The Robin Friday Story Kicks Off
In The Greatest Footballer You Never Saw
A famous George Best yarn tells of the wildly gifted footballer ordering a nightcap from hotel room service. When the bellboy appeared with yet another bottle of champagne, he took in the sight of Best strewn across a bed with fluttering bank notes and an even-more-fluttering Miss World. Pausing for a moment, the bellboy looked up at his hero and murmured: "George, where did it all go wrong?"
It's probably no coincidence that Oasis named one of their album tracks "Where Did It All Go Wrong?, or that the band's former bass player Paul "Guigsy" McGuigan is indirectly helping bring the story of another footballing maverick, Robin Friday, to the screen in the shape of The Greatest Footballer You Never Saw.
Friday, a Reading and Cardiff striker in the '70s, may not have had Best's profile but he definitely shared the great man's penchant for off-pitch craziness. All that boozing, smoking, womanising and drug-taking took its toll - he died at a tragically young age of 38 - but should make for a compelling character piece.
"When I was writing The Robin Friday Story [in 1998] with Guigsy all those years ago", says co-biographer Paolo Hewitt, "I kept saying it would make a great film". Hewitt and Julian Stone have penned the script, with Film Agency Wales contributing to funding.
No word on casting yet, but keep your eyes peeled for more on what could be an intriguing additional to perm-heavy '70s fare like Once In A Lifetime and Best.