He wasn’t a machine, but he was Borg just the same. Like many European athletes at the time, Bjorn Borg was reserved when in the public eye, a man of few words who chose to express himself instead on the tennis court. Quite the opposite was John McEnroe, seemingly always outspoken, and his hallmark became a courtside tantrum when frustrated, often yelling at the referees and smashing more than a few rackets. Both players were the best of the best.
A new movie coming this Fall focuses on the infamous rivalry between John “You Cannot Be Serious” McEnroe played by Shia LaBeouf (Transformers, The X-Files, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull) and Bjorn “Iceman” Borg, played by Sverrir Gudnason (Gentlemen & Gangsters, Blowfly Park), as the two players headed toward their showdown at Wimbledon in 1980. Alternately titled Borg/McEnroe and Borg vs. McEnroe, the film’s publicity boasts a battle of wills and personalities greater than Mayweather vs. McGregor. Directed by Janus Metz Pedersen, whose credits include directing an episode of True Detective, the film also stars David Bamber (The King’s Speech, A&E’s Pride and Prejudice, Valkyrie, Doctor Who), Tuva Novotny (A War, Slim Susie), and Stellan Skarsgard (The Hunt for Red October, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, The Avengers).
Both lead actors look the part, and the cinematography by Niels Thastum (When Animals Dream, The Girl and the Dogs) shown in the first two trailers evokes the realism of Ben Affleck’s Oscar winner, Argo. If you don’t remember Wimbledon of 1980, don’t look up the summary, just wait for the film. Suffice it to say, millions watched the finals via television, and it was, indeed, a great event, and when all is said and done, these two were truly equals. A review of their compared stats is simply stunning in similarity.
Check out these previews for the film:
Look for Borg vs. McEnroe in theaters beginning in September in Europe. The U.S. date of release has not yet been released.