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Anthony Mackie is a busy man, but apparently he's not busy enough. With some spare time in-between Marvel movies like Captain America: The Winter Soldier and his upcoming project with Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Seth Rogen, he's lined himself up to be in two different biopics. The first is Jimi, one of two upcoming biopics about famed guitarist Jimi Hendrix. The second, more recent project, is one that Mackie himself is developing and presenting to studios and will have him starring as famed Olympian Jessie Owens. While the project doesn't have a title as of yet, it does have two other films to compete with, and proves to be a golden opportunity for whomever gets it right.
Deadline ran the story about how Anthony Mackie is teaming with writer Jamie Linden (who shares the film We Are Marshall as a common link between himself and Mackie) to co-produce a film from a script by writer George Olson. With three films on his plate, and this one aiming to start shooting this fall, Mackie is going to have a lot of of running to do before he stars in a movie where he'll literally have a lot of running to do. If Joss Whedon listens to his pleas and casts him in a role for The Avengers: Age Of Ultron, you may as well stop calling him The Falcon and start calling him The Flash.
If there were an actor that could be sympathetic to Anthony Mackie's workload, it would have to be up and comer John Boyega, who in addition to featuring in the current run of 24: Live Another Day has landed himself a part in J.J. Abrams' new independent science fiction drama Star Wars: Episode VII. In fact, if it weren't for the length of time and commitment that project requires, Boyega might have been racing Mackie to the finish line in Race. The Wrap reports that Race is currently being looked over by Focus Features as a possible distributor, and Steven James (who is also set to star in the civil rights drama Selma) has filled the title role of the Olympian who defied Adolf Hitler himself by winning four gold medals at the 1936 Olympics in Berlin.
The race to make a film about racing against race is on. (Say that five times fast.) There's no clear winner as to who will get the head start, but if the films are staggered enough, we may see very different films and with great actors nominated for the various awards that a biopic like this tend to attract. No release dates have been set, but you can next see Steven James in When The Game Stands Tall and Anthony Mackie in A Many Splendored Thing. John Boyega, as mentioned previously, is hard at work on Star Wars: Episode VII.