Movie fans were no doubt grief-stricken at the news over the weekend that Sony Pictures axed
Money Pit Moneyball, the Billy Beane biopic that, for some reason, was to star Brad Pitt. Maybe it was because they figured there’s no way a movie about sports stats would draw people to the theaters. Maybe it was because they figured there was absolutely no reason for it to cost $50 million to shoot since it’s a movie about statistics. Maybe they’re not big Oakland fans.
So now we’re all missing out on what what was sure to be one of the finest cinematic treasures in baseball movie history, the best baseball movie since, like, The Sandlot 2. Lucky for all of us, the script (or at least one of the earlier drafts, anyway) is available online for your perusal (PDF, pops to new window). Quick hint: it gets good when they go to Outback.
From BIG LEAGUE STEW:
I have to say that his adaptation of Michael Lewis‘ best-seller is pretty entertaining and worth the read if you love the book. Not only does it feature disembodied voiceovers from Bill James and a solid enemy in Joe Morgan (really), it portrays Beane as a cad about town and even includes a scene in which the Oakland GM hits up an Outback Steakhouse in Cleveland with Paul DePodesta and orders a Bloomin’ Onion.
Later, Zaillian portrays Beane doing the most logical thing after eating a plate of fried onions with tangy sauce … having sex with the waitress who served it to him.
Now, it’s important to note that Beane has spent the better part of the last decade or so dodging rumors about his sexuality, even though the actual gay baseball figure is Billy Bean, no E at the end, a former major league player who’s openly gay. Still, the rumors persist, because that’s what stupid rumors do.
So it’s not too much of a stretch to think that a conversation between Steven Zaillian and Beane went down like this:
SZ: So where did Paul and you first discuss the stats?
BB: Oh, that was at an Outback in Cleveland, actually.
SZ: (writing in a notepad) Outback… in… Cleveland… okay, anything happen there?
BB: Well, uh. Any chance you could have me bang the waitress afterward?
SZ: What? You did that?
BB: Well, no, but it’s important to me anyway. Make sure she’s super-hot.
SZ: But that wasn’t in the book–
BB: Just do it, okay?! Make her like really attracted to me so I don’t even have to do anything, I just look at her.
SZ: Fine. You pick up the Outback chick. Whatever.
BB: I’m so virile.
But we’ll never know if that had been in the final movie script; considering the almost-certain contractual obligations that the director would have to satisfy by letting Pitt have at least two minutes of shirtless scenes, it’s highly possible.
And Billy Beane, you heterosexcannon of a man, soon your libido will outshine the gay guy whose name sounds exactly like yours. Even though it would have been riotously funny if the movie version featured a scene where you and DePodesta figure out the Moneyball formula and celebrate by making out like crazy.