Happy Madison Plans Baseball Comedy

About a Little League coach/ bank robber

Happy Madison Plans Baseball Comedy

by Helen O'Hara |
Published on

Adam Sandler's Happy Madison and Columbia have brought the rights to one of those true stories that seems to have been made for the movies. Based on the life of former Baltimore Orioles baseball star Rick Dempsey, it's the tale of a Little League coach who turned out to be a bank robber.

Little League is, of course, the none-more-American phenomenon whereby young kids get used to a competitive sports by playing in a children's baseball league. Many a star got his start there, including Dempsey, whose coach John Jennings was a star on the field - leading his team to a Little League World Championship in 1963 - but also a bank robber off it.

The film got its start when Rick Dempsey sat down for a chat with lifelong Orioles fan and improbably handsome That Thing You Do! star Jonathan Schaech*, who then wrote this script with Richard Chizmar and Josh Wolf. Schaech described the story to Varietyas "'Catch Me if You Can' meets 'Bad News Bears' with a touch of 'Bad Santa'". Now that's a description to get us on board.

*Note the hat he's wearing in this pic.

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