Sports films based on actual events

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  1. Biographical films about sportspeople

    Biographical films about sportspeople

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  1. 3: The Dale Earnhardt Story

    3: The Dale Earnhardt Story (2004)


    3: The Dale Earnhardt Story (sometimes referred to as The Dale Earnhardt Movie) is a 2004 television movie produced by ESPN documenting the life of NASCAR driver Dale Earnhardt, his poor upbringing in Kannapolis, North Carolina, his rise to dominance in NASCAR, his relationship with his father Ralph Earnhardt and Dale Earnhardt's son, Dale Earnhardt, Jr., and his death in the 2001 Daytona 500. It was first broadcast on December 11, 2004, and was subsequently released on DVD. Barry Pepper stars as Dale Earnhardt, also with Sean Bridgers as Neil Bonnett.

  2. 61*

    61* (2001)


    61* is a 2001 American made-for-television film directed by Billy Crystal. The film stars Barry Pepper as Roger Maris and Thomas Jane as Mickey Mantle and their quest to break Babe Ruth's 1927 single-season home run record of 60 during the 1961 season of the New York Yankees. The film was first released on HBO on April 28, 2001.

  3. 8 Seconds

    8 Seconds (1994)


    8 Seconds is a 1994 American biographical drama film directed by John G. Avildsen. Its title refers to the length of time a bull rider is required to stay on for a ride to be scored. It stars Luke Perry as American rodeo legend Lane Frost and focuses on his life and career as a bull riding champion. It also features Stephen Baldwin as Tuff Hedeman, and Red Mitchell as Cody Lambert. Notably, there is an early appearance by Renée Zellweger.

  4. A League of Their Own

    A League of Their Own (1992)


    A League of Their Own is a 1992 American comedy-drama film that tells a fictionalized account of the real-life All-American Girls Professional Baseball League (AAGPBL). Directed by Penny Marshall, the film stars Geena Davis, Tom Hanks, Lori Petty, Rosie O'Donnell, and Madonna. The screenplay was written by Lowell Ganz and Babaloo Mandel from a story by Kelly Candaele and Kim Wilson.

  5. A Winner Never Quits

    A Winner Never Quits (1986)


    A Winner Never Quits is a 1986 TV movie based on the true story of baseball player Pete Gray, the first one-armed man ever to play major league baseball, hired in 1943 as a "freak attraction" and wartime morale-booster by the Memphis Chicks, Class-A minor league ball club.

  6. Ali

    Ali (2001)


    Ali is a 2001 American biographical film directed by Michael Mann. The film tells the story of the boxer Muhammad Ali, played by Will Smith, from 1964 to 1974 featuring his capture of the heavyweight title from Sonny Liston, his conversion to Islam, criticism of the Vietnam War, banishment from boxing, his return to fight Joe Frazier in 1971, and, lastly, his reclaiming the title from George Foreman in the Rumble in the Jungle fight of 1974. It also discusses the great social and political upheaval in the United States following the assassinations of Malcolm X and Martin Luther King, Jr. during the presidency of Lyndon B. Johnson.

  7. As One

    As One (2012)


    As One (Hangul: 코리아; RR: Koria; lit. "Korea") is a 2012 South Korean sports drama film starring Ha Ji-won and Bae Doona. It is a cinematic retelling of the first ever post-war Unified Korea sports team which won the gold at the 1991 World Table Tennis Championships in Chiba, Japan. Director Moon Hyun-sung used the foundation of true events to tell the story of a team that united a divided nation for the first time in its painful history.

  8. Beautiful Boxer

    Beautiful Boxer (2003)


    Beautiful Boxer (Thai: บิวตี้ฟูล บ๊อกเซอร์) is a Thai biographical sports film by Singapore-based director Ekachai Uekrongtham. It tells the life story of Nong Thoom, a famous kathoey (trans woman), Muay Thai fighter, actress and model. She was portrayed by male kickboxer Asanee Suwan.

  9. Berlin 36

    Berlin 36 (2009)


    Berlin 36 is a 2009 German film telling the fate of Jewish track and field athlete Gretel Bergmann in the 1936 Summer Olympics. She was replaced by the Nazi regime by an athlete later discovered to be a man. The film, based on a true story, was released in Germany on September 10, 2009.

  10. Bhaag Milkha Bhaag

    Bhaag Milkha Bhaag (2013)


    Bhaag Milkha Bhaag (English: "Run Milkha Run") is a 2013 Indian biographical sports drama film produced and directed by Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra from a script written by Prasoon Joshi based on the life of Milkha Singh, an Indian athlete who was a national champion runner and an Olympian. The film stars Farhan Akhtar, Sonam Kapoor, Meesha Shafi, Divya Dutta, Pavan Malhotra, Yograj Singh and Prakash Raj. Sports was coordinated by the American action director Rob Miller of ReelSports.

  11. Breaking the Surface: The Greg Louganis Story

    Breaking the Surface: The Greg Louganis Story (1997)


    Breaking the Surface: The Greg Louganis Story is a 1997 TV-movie about diver Greg Louganis based on the best-selling book Breaking the Surface co-written by Greg Louganis and Eric Marcus that stayed on top of the New York Times Best Seller list for 5 weeks.

  12. Brian's Song

    Brian's Song (2001)


    Brian's Song is the 2001 remake of the 1971 television film Brian's Song, which re-tells the story of Brian Piccolo (Sean Maher), a white running back who meets, clashes with and befriends Chicago Bears and fellow running back Gale Sayers (Mekhi Phifer), an eventual Hall of Fame African American football player on the same team. The movie was adapted from Sayers own words in his autobiography, I am Third. The television movie, produced by Columbia TriStar Television, was first broadcast in the US on The Wonderful World of Disney on ABC.

  13. Chak De India!

    Chak De India! (2007)


    Chak De! India (English: Go India!) is a 2007 Hindi-language Indian sports drama film about field hockey in India. Directed by Shimit Amin and produced by Yash Raj Films, with action by Rob Miller of ReelSports, the film stars Shah Rukh Khan as Kabir Khan, the former captain of the Indian hockey team. In the plot, after a disastrous loss to the Pakistan hockey team, Khan is ostracised from the sport. He and his mother are further forced from their ancestral home by angry neighbours. Seven years later in an attempt to redeem himself, Khan becomes the coach for the India women's national field hockey team with the goal of turning its sixteen contentious players to win the women hockey world cup. His team at first hates him due to his strict training regime (and attempts to make them work as a team) and pressurises him to resign.But soon his team realises its mistake and apologises to him. He then convinces the administration to allow the women's team for world cup and wins the world cup astonishing everyone and leading the women's team to the Gold, Khan restores his reputation and returns with his mother to their home, welcomed by those who had shunned them years before.

  14. Chariots of Fire

    Chariots of Fire (1981)


    Chariots of Fire is a 1981 British historical drama film. It tells the fact-based story of two athletes in the 1924 Olympics: Eric Liddell, a devout Scottish Christian who runs for the glory of God, and Harold Abrahams, an English Jew who runs to overcome prejudice.

  15. Cinderella Man

    Cinderella Man (2005)


    Cinderella Man is a 2005 American drama film by Ron Howard, titled after the nickname of heavyweight boxing champion James J. Braddock and inspired by his life story. The film was produced by Howard, Penny Marshall, and Brian Grazer. Damon Runyon is credited for giving Braddock this nickname. Russell Crowe, Renée Zellweger and Paul Giamatti star.

  16. Coach Carter

    Coach Carter (2005)


    Coach Carter is a 2005 American biographical drama film directed by Thomas Carter. It is based on a true story of Richmond High School basketball coach Ken Carter portrayed by Samuel L. Jackson, who made headlines in 1999 for benching his undefeated high school basketball team due to poor academic results. The story was conceived from a screenplay co-written by John Gatins and Mark Schwahn, who created the TV series One Tree Hill. The film also recycles a handful of plot devices from another television series, The White Shadow, which director Carter also co-starred in. The ensemble cast features Rob Brown, Channing Tatum, Debbi Morgan, and musical entertainer Ashanti.

  17. Cobb

    Cobb (1994)


    Cobb is a 1994 biopic starring Tommy Lee Jones as the famed baseball player Ty Cobb. It was written and directed by Ron Shelton and was based on a book by Al Stump. The original music score was composed by Elliot Goldenthal.

  18. Cool Runnings

    Cool Runnings (1993)


    Cool Runnings is a 1993 American sports film directed by Jon Turteltaub, and starring Leon, Doug E. Doug, Rawle D. Lewis, Malik Yoba and John Candy. The film was released in the United States on October 1, 1993. This was the last film featuring Candy to be released in his lifetime.

  19. Der ganz große Traum

    Der ganz große Traum (2011)


    Lessons of a Dream (German: Der ganz große Traum) is a German drama film directed by Sebastian Grobler, loosely based on the life of German football pioneer Konrad Koch. In the film, Koch, a young English teacher at a secondary school in late 19th century Braunschweig, German Empire, introduces his students to the new sport of football to enthuse them for the English language and culture. Koch's liberal methods alienate his conservative colleagues, parents and local dignitaries.

  20. Egaro

    Egaro (2011)


    Egaro, the Immortal Eleven is a 2011 Bengali sports film based on a historical event. It was directed by debutant director Arun Roy. The film is based on the historical events leading to a football match between Mohun Bagan and East Yorkshire Regiment on 29 July 1911, a time when India was under the British rule. This was the first time when Mohun Bagan, or any native team won the IFA Shield. The film commemorated that event in its centenary year, i.e., 2011.

  21. Eight Men Out

    Eight Men Out (1988)


    Eight Men Out is a drama film based on Eliot Asinof's 1963 book 8 Men Out. It was written and directed by John Sayles. The film is a dramatization of Major League Baseball's Black Sox scandal, in which eight members of the Chicago White Sox conspired with gamblers to intentionally lose the 1919 World Series. Much of the movie was filmed at the old Bush Stadium in Indianapolis, Indiana.

  22. Fear Strikes Out

    Fear Strikes Out (1957)


    Fear Strikes Out (1957) is a dramatic film depicting the life and career of American baseball player Jimmy Piersall. It is based on Piersall's biography Fear Strikes Out: The Jim Piersall Story, written by Al Hirshberg. The film stars Anthony Perkins as Piersall and Karl Malden as his father, and it was directed by Robert Mulligan. This film is a Paramount Picture. Gary Vinson had an uncredited role in the film as a high school baseball player.

  23. Final Shot: The Hank Gathers Story

    Final Shot: The Hank Gathers Story (1992)


    Final Shot: The Hank Gathers Story is an American 1992 sports drama biography television film about the life of Loyola Marymount basketball player Eric "Hank" Gathers, written for Tribune Entertainment by Fred Johnson, Don Enright and Ed Fields, and directed by Charles Braverman.

  24. Follow the Sun

    Follow the Sun (1951)


    Follow the Sun is a 1951 biographical film of the life of golf legend Ben Hogan. It stars Glenn Ford as Hogan and Anne Baxter as his wife. Many golfers and sports figures of the day appear in the movie.

  25. Forever Strong

    Forever Strong (2008)


    Forever Strong is a sports film directed by Ryan Little and written by David Pliler and released on September 26, 2008. The film stars Sean Faris, Gary Cole, Neal McDonough, Sean Astin, Penn Badgley and Arielle Kebbel. The film is about a troubled rugby union player who must play against the team his father coaches at the national championships. Forever Strong is based on a compilation of individual true stories.

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