Brad Pitt to star in new F1 movie (5th Update)

Richard Trenholm of CNET spoke with Kosinski and Bruckheimer in London recently as they did press for Top Gun 2. While they couldn’t say much about the as-yet-untitled Formula 1 movie, they described it as “percolating,” with Maverick screenwriter Ehren Kruger working up Kosinski’s idea.

The film will see Pit play a retired F1 driver getting back onto the track with a hotshot young racer. Unusually, Apple is reported to be giving the film a monthlong theatrical release before releasing it on streaming service Apple TV Plus.

Seven-time Formula 1 champion Hamilton gave the filmmakers the inside track on the sport. “His expertise is phenomenal,” said Bruckheimer. “It’s just great to listen to him, picking his brain with a writer and Joe on Zoom messages as they pitch the story. It’s the same thing as working with our fighter pilots [on Top Gun].”

Kosinski added, “He is like a fighter pilot — 12 inches off the ground!”

 Word is they hope to release the film in 2023.

June 8, 2022 

We had this rumor as ‘fact’ back in April, but today Apple announced that Apple Original Films has emerged as the highest bidder for Brad Pitt’s upcoming movie about Formula One racing. The photo above was also released and Apple is reported to be throwing a ton of money at the movie.

According to Deadline, Apple paid between $130 million – $140 million to secure the deal.

You saw what Liberty Media has done for F1 with the Drive-to-Survive Series, now they are behind what could turn out to be a blockbuster movie that will take F1 to even greater heights.

And the movie has some kings of Hollywood behind it.

Besides Pitt as the lead actor, Joseph Kosinski, who just steered “Top Gun: Maverick” to blockbuster success, is directing the yet-to-be-titled film, which will be produced by Jerry Bruckheimer, Pitt’s Plan B Entertainment and seven-time Formula One champion Lewis Hamilton.

Brad Pitt is playing a driver who comes out of retirement to compete alongside a rookie driver and the titans of the sport. Ehren Kruger, one of the three screenwriters on “Top Gun: Maverick,” is responsible for penning the screenplay.

Additional producers are Kosinski and Chad Oman of Jerry Bruckheimer Films. Copper CEO Penni Thow serves as executive producer.

Apple is planning to release the movie in theaters, and not as a small run to make it eligible for awards. Apparently, the plan is for a global run of 30-60 days, at which point it would move to Apple TV+

April 14, 2022 

Apple, Paramount Pictures, Universal Pictures, Disney, Netflix, MGM, Sony Entertainment, and Amazon reportedly had been trying to gain the rights to produce the blockbuster movie. Film industry insiders claim Apple has eventually won the bidding war.

Deadline reports, “Apple is in exclusive negotiations and will close the first big film package of the New Year. That’s the highly competitive race to acquire an untitled pitch package that will have Brad Pitt playing a racer who comes out of retirement to mentor a younger driver and take his final stab at glory on the track as the younger driver’s teammate.”

The untitled project is said to revolve around a retired driver who returns to racing in a bid to mentor a young racer to victory, insiders told The Sun.

Pitt will play the veteran racing star of the story.

Deadline cites sources saying the untitled Pitt F1 movie package was “in the $130 million-$140 million range, before above-the-line compensation.” The blockbuster budget foreshadows that we can probably expect something in the vein of Ron Howard’s Rush and the above-mentioned Ford V Ferrari.

Talking with The Sun, Hamilton said, “I don’t know if I am ever going to be good at movies, but I’ll give it a try.” Hamilton has also been showing interest in music and fashion for quite a while. Maybe, just maybe, it would be better for the Mercedes driver to focus on driving, especially seeing the team’s 2022 season so far.

January 4, 2022 

Apple is currently “in exclusive negotiations” for Brad Pitt and Joseph Kosinski’s untitled racing film.

According to reports, the title will mark the first big film deal of 2022 and is priced at somewhere between $130 million USD to $140 million USD. Pitt will portray a racer who comes out of retirement in order to mentor a young driver and be their teammate. Top Gun: Maverick’s Kosinski will direct the film while Ehren Kruger will pen the script, Jerry Bruckheimer will produce and British F1 driver Lewis Hamilton will be involved. Whether F1 racing will be shown is yet to be confirmed.

The racing film is Pitt’s latest movie deal with Apple; the tech giant recently acquired Jon Watts’ untitled movie starring Pitt and George Clooney.

December 6, 2021 

This rumor is upgraded to ‘fact’ today.

From the Hollywood Reporter: Hollywood can’t get enough of fast cars.

A bidding war erupted Friday for a racing project featuring bold-faced names that has studios and streamers burning rubber to get their gloves on it.

The untitled project has Brad Pitt attached to star and Joseph Kosinski, the filmmaker behind the upcoming Top Gun: Maverick, attached to direct.

Veteran mega-producer Jerry Bruckheimer and screenwriter Ehren Kruger, who worked with Kosinski on Maverick, are also part of the blockbuster pitch package.

According to sources, offers have been coming in from studios Paramount, MGM, Sony and Universal as well as streamers Netflix, Apple and Amazon. Even Disney, which normally sits out these kinds of races, is on the course for this one.

The story or take isn’t clear but sources say that Lewis Hamilton, the British modern racing legend, is also involved with the project.

Pitt and Kosinski have long tried to make a racing movie. In 2013, Pitt circled Go Like Hell, which had Kosinski attached along with Tom Cruise. That project eventually morphed into Ford v. Ferrari with a whole new actor and director combination.

December 3, 2021 

On Friday afternoon, a bidding war kicked off amongst Hollywood’s major studios over an untitled racing film that has Brad Pitt attached to star, Deadline has confirmed.

The film will be helmed by Top Gun: Maverick‘s Joseph Kosinski, with that Paramount blockbuster’s screenwriter Ehren Kruger and its producer Jerry Bruckheimer also in the mix.

While no information has been provided yet as the story the film will examine, we hear that British Formula One driver Lewis Hamilton is involved in some capacity, as well. Paramount is joined in the bidding war by studios including MGM, Sony, Universal and Disney with Netflix, Apple and Amazon also competing to lock the film down.

NASCAR has had some very successful movies over the years, Le Mans, and more recently F1.

IndyCar needs a movie, but for some reason, IndyCar seems hell-bent on staying at the same level as Formula 2 – a grid of F1 wannabes.