In a wave of recent announcements by Focus Features, Bobby Farrelly’s newest film, Champions, is now set for a wide theatrical release on March 24, 2023. Farrelly, known for his previous collaboration with his brother Peter Farrelly on classic comedies such as There’s Something About Mary and Dumb and Dumber, will be directing the film. The screenplay for Champions will be written by Mark Rizzo who previously worked on the animated Netflix series Green Eggs and Ham.
The film will star Woody Harrelson as a minor-league basketball coach. Kaitlin Olson, known for her role as Dee Reynolds in It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia will co-star with Harrelson in an undisclosed role, alongside Ernie Hudson, who plays Winston Zeddemore in the Ghostbusters franchise. Joining the cast, Cheech Marin of Cheech and Chong will also appear in the film alongside Matt Cook (Being the Ricardos).
While specific plot details of Champions remain unknown, it will be based on the Spanish comedy-drama film Campeones, released in 2018, according to an earlier report from Deadline. The film, which was well received by critics, is inspired by the true story of the Special Olympics team Aderes of Valencia, which would win 12 Spanish championships in the span of 15 years.
The positive critical response of the film would lead to three Goya Awards for Best Film, Best New Actor for Jesús Vidal, and Best Original Song for “Este es el momento” by Coque Malla. Now with an English-language adaptation of the movie on the way with a set of talented actors and a recognized director with a history of comedy at the helm, Champions can be a film for fans of the sports genre to look out for when it releases next spring.
Paul Brooks and Scott Niemeyer of Gold Circle Entertainment will be producing the film alongside Jeremy Plager of 7 Deuce Entertainment. Harrelson will be co-executive producing the film with Brad Kessell, Alexander Jooss, Álvaro Longoria, Javier Fesser, and Luis Manso.
Champions will be released exclusively in theaters on March 24, 2023. Check out the official synopsis for the upcoming film below:
In CHAMPIONS, Harrelson stars in the hilarious and heartwarming story of a former minor-league basketball coach who, after a series of missteps, is ordered by the court to manage a team of players with intellectual disabilities. He soon realizes that despite his doubts, together, this team can go further than they ever imagined.