Well, that didn’t take long, did it? Yesterday, word arrived that Ben Affleck and Matt Damon were angling to set up a first-look production deal with Warner Bros. Now, Deadline Hollywood is reporting that the first project under the arrangement could be The Trade, a true-life tale of baseball and wife swapping.
The pair are said to have long been pursuing a film about New York Yankees players Fritz Peterson and Mike Kekich who, in 1973, shocked America by announcing during spring training that they were engaging in wife-switching. Seems they’d become enamoured of each other’s spouses and, instead of resorting to fisticuffs, the two friends had simply traded partners.
Apparently, the situation worked out well for Peterson and Kekich’s wife, Susanne, as they’re still together. Kekich and Marilyn Peterson, however, have since split.
Back when Ben and Matt were working with Sean Bailey (he had to leave their company when he got the big production job at Disney recently), the trio convinced Seinfeld and Curb Your Enthusiasm writer Dave Mandel to pen the script, but delays set in when they couldn’t secure life rights to the story. Since then, Mandel has become a writer in demand, but was willing to still crank out the script provided he could do it when he had spare time.
He’s obviously found it, and created something that landed on 2009’s Black List of hot screenplays. And though Richard Linklater had expressed the desire to direct The Trade, it now seems like Affleck wants to do the job and star as Peterson, with Damon possibly reuniting on screen with his old mucker to play Kekich.
We’ll see if the two lifelong Boston Red Sox fans can actually manage to stand wearing Yankee uniforms long enough for this to become a reality…