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F1 movie will be “invasive” warns Domenicali

F1 CEO, Stefano Domenicali has warned the teams that the making of the new movie featuring Brad Pitt will make life difficult but it is essential if the ongoing boom is to continue.

For a major, international sport, F1 has been poorly served over the years. The one true effort was almost 60 years ago, with John Frankenheimer’s Grand Prix, while such was the lack of cooperation from the sport that Sylvester Stallone opted to switch his 2001 movie Driven from F1 to Indycar.

Now, on the back of the success of Drive to Survive, F1 returns to Hollywood, with Pitt and the team behind Top Gun: Maverick seeking to make the sport serious box office.

Work on the movie gets underway in the coming weeks and F1 bosses have warned that shooting it around actual races is going to be invasive for those working within the sport but that if it is to be successful their full cooperation is required.

“It’s another way to show what we want to do, something different,” Stefano Domenicali told investors in a conference call. “When we started the collaboration with Netflix, the community said what’s going on? This is not our place to be. But now we understand the power of it.

Then we added the very strong presence with social media, making sure that all our drivers and teams are very active in promoting the sport.

“That’s another tool with the movie,” he admitted. “Actually, we’re going to start the shooting in Silverstone very soon, and you will see it will be the first movie when basically, they will be within the racing event.

“It will be quite invasive in terms of production,” he warned, “it’s something that we need to control in a way, but it will be another way of showing that F1 never stops.”

Meanwhile, Liberty Media CEO, Greg Maffei warned that the sport cannot rely on Drive to Survive forever, however as opposed to focussing on what’s happening on track the American believes that branching out into other mediums is what is needed to attract new fans.

“The Simpsons has gone for twenty years, but there aren’t that many shows that run that long,” he said, though many would argue that the show’s best years are long in the past.

“Drive to Survive is wonderful,” he continued, “but we cannot rely on it to be our only promotion vehicle forever. You’ve got to keep it fresh, change the game. And that’s one of the things I’d like to think we’ve done with the team entering F1.

“Credit Stefano, what we’ve done more recently around other kinds of Instagram and TikTok and the like, we’re keeping it fresh and different.

“This movie, kind of like Vegas, is going to be a whole other level. As much as Drive to Survive is enormous to a lot of people around the world, I still go places and people say, ‘Huh?’ Its audience is not that big. It may be big among this group, but it’s not that big.

“A Brad Pitt movie with Lewis Hamilton consulting, and with (Jerry) Bruckheimer and with the director from Top Gun: Maverick, we’ve already seen some of what they’re going to do, and how they’re going to skin these cars. They took the technology from Top Gun, and it’s going to be amazing.”

Though unconfirmed, initial reports claim Domenicali, Maffei and even Ross Brawn have been involved in the scriptwriting, which they believe will appeal to the widest audience.

In the main plot, the FIA accountant responsible for budget cap auditing discovers that his wife is having an affair. He murders her and her lover and is sent to a maximum security prison. Once there, he slowly establishes himself, and becomes accountant to the chief warden, helping to launder money that he has accrued through various means, whilst also assisting the prison guards with their tax returns. However, behind the scenes the former FIA man is using a rock hammer to tunnel his way out of the prison…

In a second, far more plausible plot, a leading driver is bitten by a radio-active spider…

Meanwhile, F1 and Liberty bosses have dismissed claims that in a further attempt to bring the sport to the masses, particularly the young, the likes of Charles Leclerc, Pierre Gasly and Lando Norris are to form a boy band called Track Limits.

Sources at F1 Towers have ridiculed the claim and insist that the band will be called Grand Prix (think about it!).

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