Daily Variety reports that Yankee third-baseman Alex Rodriguez is set to make his big-screen debut in Will Gluck's romantic comedy, Friends With Benefits, alongside Mila Kunis and Justin Timberlake. Filming starts this month in New York, but New York fans won't have to worry about shooting clashing with A-Rod's day job, as the production will be working around the baseball schedule.
The New York Daily News says that, in a bit of a stretch, Rodriguez will not be playing himself, which would seem to be a riskiy option. If the road to cinematic hell is not quite paved with sporting figures who fancied themselves as masters of the dramatic arts, they have certainly caused a few pot-holes. Ken Norton in Mandngo, anyone? Shaq in Kazaam!? Any movie starring a WWE wrestler? [Honorable exception: Roddy Piper in They Live]
However, it's an avenue largely devoid of baseball players. A lot of them appear in films about baseball - who can forget Randy Johnson stirring portrayal of, er, a pitcher, in Little Big League. But we've been blessedly spared the sight of, for example, Milton Bradley being paired with Jean-Claude Van Damme in an action movie. Who would ever green light that kind of nonsense?
Of course, perhaps A-Rod has an inside track, having been romantically linked to several well-respected actresses: Kate Hudson, Cameron Diaz, Sofia Vergara and Mado... Ok, Kate Hudson, Cameron Diaz and Sofia Vergara anyway. Maybe he was just interested in getting acting lessons? I must admit, however, I'd be more inclined to go watch a movie with that trio than A-Rod. Especially if there was a pillow-fight involved. Oops. Did I say that out loud?