The Sochi Games are still seven-plus months away, but apparently it’s already time for the film world to start capitalizing on the world event.
Enter: Gerard Depardieu. The French actor is set to star in the tentatively-titled Sports Without Borders, a “low-budget comedy” taking place during Sochi, in which he’s team director for what we can only assume is a misfit group of Russian Alpine skiers. He also fires the whole coaching staff and replaces them with an eccentric Austrian.
While it doesn’t quite remind us of famous Olympics film classics like The Cutting Edge, Miracle, or Cool Runnings, it’s probably going to be better than Blades of Glory, Pentathlon, and both Prefontaine biopics. And to his credit, Depardieu has become rather popular in Russia after threatening to renounce his French citizenship, taking up a new residence on Moscow’s Democracy Street, and making friends with President Vladimir Putin.
NBC Sports will air coverage of 87 Alpine skiing races at 22 resorts across the globe this fall and winter, from October through March, in the final full season before the 2018 Olympics.
Highlights include fall and winter stops in the U.S. with races in Killington, Vt.; Beaver Creek, Colo.; Squaw Valley, Calif.; and the World Cup Finals in Aspen, Colo., in March.
Lindsey Vonn‘s highlighted World Cup stop will be downhill and super-G races in Lake Louise, Canada, the first weekend of December.
The world championships in February will be in St. Moritz, Switzerland, where Ted Ligety and Mikaela Shiffrin will look to defend titles.
ALPINE SKIING SEASON PREVIEWS: Men | Women
Canadian skier Phil Brown was fortunate to walk away from an airborne crash at the World Cup season opener in Soelden, Austria, on Sunday.
Brown failed to finish his first run, losing contact with the snow early on and falling hard onto his side.
He tweeted a video of the crash, with slow-motion replays, with a soundtrack of Irish singer Enya‘s “Only Time.”
The World Cup season continues with men’s and women’s slaloms in Levi, Finland, in three weeks.
MORE: Ted Ligety recovers to finish fifth in first race in 9 months