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If you watched the Winter Olympics in 1988 then the words "Eddie the Eagle" will probably make you smile, and then laugh out loud. The Olympics are about unlikely stories, but there may have been no more unlikely story in the history of the games than the first man to ever represent Great Britain in Olympic ski jumping. Now the story of this unlikely hero has been made into a film, and the trailer evokes all the same emotions that millions felt when they watched him jump.
Taron Egerton plays the title role, looking nearly unrecognizable if the last time you saw him was in Kingsman: The Secret Service. Eddie Edwards was far from what you’d call a sex symbol and Egerton has transformed himself for the part of one of the world's most unathletic athletes. Hugh Jackman plays the man who agrees to train the young man who has a dream of competing in the Olympics. Edwards chooses ski jumping because he doesn’t have to make a team, or really compete with anybody else in the UK. Still, there is some fear from many that Eddie will be an embarrassment to the sport. This is where the primary conflict in the film will be located. Although there does appear to be an issue with Edwards competing against his own health and wellbeing as well.
The film reunites Egerton with his Kingsman director Matthew Vaughn although Vaughn is only acting as a producer here. The film is actually being directed by Dexter Fletcher. An accomplished actor, this will only be the third film that Fletcher has directed, and it will be the first to see a theatrical release in the United States.
While the trailer basically runs you through the entire story from start to finish, the plot is not the focus here. While 1988 was long enough ago that many moviegoers were born years after the events of the film, the movie is obviously looking to attract an audience with the emotional resonance of the story. Much like Eddie "The Eagle’s" own drive to compete. It’s not about the result, it’s about being there. Sports is a popular focus for movies for exactly this reason. The cinderella story that can be created is something that appeals to a wide variety of movie fans. This story is no different. The fact that it really happens just helps make it all hit home that much more.
What do you think of Eddie the Eagle? It’s got a strong cast with Taron Egerton, Hugh Jackman , and Christopher Walken among others. It could make for a great, emotional night at the movies. The film will hit theaters on February 26, 2016.