‘Moneyball’ helmer knows topic well

Past experience gave background for film

“Moneyball” director Bennett Miller knows how difficult it is to play baseball professionally.

Miller noted Friday night at the pic’s world premiere that he had a crystal-clear recollection of when he diiscovered that he lacked the skills to be a major league baseball player.

“When I was 13, I realized that I was not going to make it as a professional ballplayer,” he told the audience at night in introducing the premiere of Sony’s “Moneyball” at Roy Thomson Hall on day two of the Toronto Film Festival.

Instead, his high school coach asked him to be a statistician for the team — a post that didn’t endear him to the players. “Moneyball” deals with the revolution in how statistics are used, particularly by Oakland A’s GM Billy Beane.

Miller was joined on stage and introduced cast members Brad Pitt (who portrays Beane), Phillip Seymour Hoffman, Jonah Hill, Steven Bishop and Chris Pratt — along with Beane, who Miller said was at the premiere “very reluctantly.”

He also introduced former MLB player David Justice, who was in the audience and is portrayed by Bishop.

“Everyone here on stage has suffered for this film,” he added.

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