New Movie About Ryan Leaf Set To Debut
Filmmaker Tim Carr is set to debut his new film about former San Diego Chargers quarterback Ryan Leaf. "Leaf" will debut Wednesday night at the San Diego Library. He insists that the screening will be free of charge since the people of San Diego were part of Leaf's story.
"Leaf" is a fictional account of Ryan Leaf's life filmed in a documentary style. Carr not only wrote and directed the film, he also played the leading role. Carr has some acting experience, having appeared in 2005's "Rocky Balboa". Film and TV actors that have appeared in “The Sopranos,” “The Departed,” “The 25th Hour” and “The Wire" also play roles in the film.
Carr, however, says the film that will be screened in San Diego will not be the final product. He is working on a new ending that will integrate Leaf's recent personal problems. In November, Leaf resigned from his job as quarterbacks coach at West Texas A&M due to personal problems.
Prior to his recent setback, Ryan had a stormy NFL career. After being selected second overall draft pick in the 1998 NFL draft--behind future MVP Peyton Manning--Leaf played just 25 games in five years and racked up meager stats. During that time, Leaf earned a reputation for being hot-tempered after having confrontations with coaches, fans, and media.
After his NFL playing days ended in 2002, Leaf carved out a successful career as quarterbacks coach and golf coach for West Texas A&M.
Although San Diego fans may not want to relive Leaf's tenure with the Chargers, Carr believes that Leaf's story is ideal movie material.
Carr said what really drew him to Leaf's story was the fact he was born just 10 days after Leaf in 1976.
“So I started to think what would I do if I was in that situation?” Carr said. “When he came out he was 22, and when I was 22 I was a knucklehead, big time. So you've got to think, if I was a knucklehead and I had the keys to the kingdom, what would I do?
“Looking back, now that I'm 32, I can say, 'Well, I would have done this and this and this.' But that's a 32-year-old man talking about what I would do 10 years ago. You start to think about that and that's sort of what got me in that direction. I was inspired (to) maybe tell that story like 'Husbands and Wives' but through the eyes and ears of fans and writers and players.”