NEW JERSEY TURNPIKES
Release Date: TBA 1999
Distributor: Universal Pictures
Cast: Kelsey Grammer, Lee Majors, Jim Brown, Dave DeBusschere, Orlando Jones
Director: Bryan Buckley (debut)
Writers: Michael Berg & Hank Perlman
Based upon: This is true story of the American Basketball Association, which was established in 1975. There was, however, no team called the Turnpikes... that part is fictional.
Premise: In 1975, a new league of basketball teams was established outside the NBA (National Basketball Association). This movie takes a look at one of the (fictional) teams that belonged to the ABA, the New Jersey Turnpikes, in a documentary-comedy format, not unlike a sports-version of This is Spinal Tap.
Greg's Thoughts: As the NBA lockout continues, the looming release of this movie has got to raise an eyebrow. Is the lack of professional basketball on TV an obstacle or a boon for this movie? The likely answer is the latter, especially if people perceive it as a parody of the system that led to the lock-out, if even just a little bit.
The premise of this movie is promising, in that there's not really been a "Spinal Tap for sports" yet. That is, of course, if the actual movie follows through on this promising concept.
For star Kelsey Grammer, he's got to be hoping this one is a surprise hit, considering the disappointment of his starring debut, Down Periscope.