Ben Foster stars as Lance Armstrong in the ‘The Program.’ The first trailer of the biopic of the disgraced cyclist has quickly gone viral. Watch the first glimpse of the Armstrong journey from triumphant seven-time Tour de France winner to disgraced champion brought down in a performance-enhancing drug scandal.
The much anticipated movie was directed by the famed British director Stephen Frears (“My Beautiful Laundrette,” “Dangerous Liaisons”) and is based on the book, “Seven Deadly Sins: My Pursuit of Lance Armstrong” by sports journalist David Walsh who was instrumental in uncovering the drug scandal that led to the cyclist’s downfall. It was adapted for the screen by John Hodge (“Trainspotting”).
Ben Foster is riveting as he transforms himself into the intensely ambitious and unrelenting Lance Armstrong who, once a hero and an inspiration to many, has suffered a self-inflicted fall from grace that saw him stripped of all of his titles including the seven Tour De France victories, and banned from the sport of cycling for life.
The trailer draws us into his unstoppable ambition. It’s haunting to hear Ben Foster’s Lance Armstrong in a press conference, uttering with more than noticeable coldness, “I’m the most tested athlete on the face of the planet. I have never tested positive for performance enhancement drugs.” For yes, it is clear in retrospect never testing positive and never having used drugs are two entirety different circumstances.
Our vantage point as an audience informs how we see these scenes, of Armstrong beating cancer, cycling with a superhuman intensity on a stationary bike in a laboratory, and always, with a focus and a determination that, in other circumstances would be admirable.
Later in the trailer, we hear him repeating the line, with an almost sociopathic chill: “I have never tested positive for performance enhancing drugs.” No, he never committed murder or any such violent crime. But it was a crime nonetheless, as it took planning, deception and concealment. Foster’s Armstrong makes it clear we are witnessing someone who had the cunning to perpetuate a fraud for many decades.
But not everyone is convinced. Chris O’Dowd portrays the sports journalist David Walsh who voices unbridled skepticism as he observed that Armstrong is “a man transformed.” We hear him say, “He’s recovered from cancer and turned into bloody Superman. He wins and wins and celebrates. He meets the President, he gets more sponsors, more money, more fame.” He exclaims, “The man is cheat!”
Costars in the movie include Dustin Hoffman, Lee Pace, Jesse Plemons, and Guillaume Canet.
For now, just a glimpse as the first trailer for ‘The Program’ is below!
Pictures: PR Photos