Björn Borg and John McEnroe will face off in Switzerland later this year when biopic “Borg/McEnroe” opens the 13th Zurich Film Festival. Sverrir Gudnason, the actor who plays Borg, and director Janus Metz Pedersen will attend the festival curtain-raiser.
The movie follows the famous rivalry between the titular tennis champions and their classic 1980 Wimbledon final. Shia LaBeouf stars as McEnroe.
“We are extremely proud to be opening the ZFF for the first time with a Swedish production. ‘Borg/McEnroe’ is one of the year’s most hotly anticipated movies and is sure to delight cinemagoers around the globe,” said ZFF co-directors Nadja Schildknecht and Karl Spoerri.
The Zurich announcement comes soon after the London Film Festival said it was giving another tennis film, “Battle of the Sexes,” a gala screening. The Emma Stone and Steve Carell starrer, which will also be at Zurich, just premiered at the Telluride Film Festival to favorable reviews.
“Borg/McEnroe” will have its world premiere at the Toronto Film Festival, and Neon will release it in North America in 2018. The movie is written by Ronnie Sandahl (“Underdog”) and produced by Tre Vanner and SF Studios, which is making a concerted push into English-language projects and recently opened a London office.
The Zurich Film Festival runs from Sept. 28 to Oct. 8. Titles receiving gala premieres at the festival include Luca Guadagnino’s Sundance title “Call Me by Your Name” and Cannes Palme d’Or winner “The Square.”