SPIRIT OF THE GAME, written and directed by J.D. Scott, will be the Opening Night film of the 1st Park City International Film Festival (PCIFF) on Wednesday, August 10, at the iconic Eccles Theater in Park City, Utah.
Filmed in Australia, the movie features an international cast that includes Aaron Jakubenko, Wade Briggs, Anna McGahan and young actor Cameron Caulfield. The film also stars PCIFF Celebrity Ambassador Kevin Sorbo (GOD’S NOT DEAD, HERCULES: THE LEGENDARY JOURNEYS).
Set in the 1950s, SPIRIT OF THE GAME depicts the true story of a group of young missionaries who have journeyed to Australia to spread the gospel and discover their services are needed in another way. Their calling is to help the country’s fledgling national basketball team as it prepares for the 1956 Olympic Games. In so doing, they unite a nation still reeling from the aftermath of World War II.
It’s 1956 and twenty-year-old Delyle Condie is on top of the world. MVP of his college basketball team (University of Utah) and engaged to Emily, his high school sweetheart, life is looking pretty good.
That is, until the second round of the NCAA tournament. Midway through the most important game of his life, Emily unexpectedly breaks off her engagement to Delyle.
Heartbroken, Delyle makes the spontaneous decision to quit basketball and embark on a mission for his church. His destination: Melbourne, Australia.
A city gripped with Olympic fever, Delyle’s first encounters with the Aussies are not encouraging. He struggles to maintain his spirits when faced with the indifference of the locals, but when an opportunity arises to help train Australia’s first Olympic basketball team, Delyle sees his chance to connect with them.
His passion leads to the formation of the Mormon Yankees basketball team, and in the run up to the Games, fierce competition with the French leads to a bloody rematch, through which Delyle and his Yankees are able to prove their faith – and their mettle – to the world.
PCIFF Celebrity Ambassadors Kevin Sorbo and his wife, Sam, have been a voice for independent movies that elevate the human spirit. “I’m asked all the time to make more movies with moral values and lessons that people can learn from,” Sorbo says. “At the very core of a successful film is a real human story we can all understand and relate to – SPIRIT OF THE GAME delivers on that story. I’m glad the Samuel Goldwyn group and Purdie Distribution have come on board to open the film festival with this incredible film, it will be a stellar night.”