F1 confident Hamilton-Pitt film will dwarf “enormous” popularity of Drive to Survive

2023 F1 season

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Formula 1 has high expectations for the potential of its forthcoming film which Lewis Hamilton and Brad Pitt are involved in.

The as-yet-untitled feature, production of which is due to begin this year, involves some of the creatives behind last year’s successful ‘Top Gun: Maverick’. They include director Joseph Kosinski and producer Jerry Bruckheimer.

F1’s Netflix series Drive to Survive has won praise for attracting new viewers to the sport since its launch five years ago. However Liberty Media president and CEO Greg Maffei said he expects the forthcoming film to have a much greater impact, comparing it to the forthcoming Las Vegas Grand Prix.

“This movie, kind of like Vegas, is going to be a whole other level,” Maffei told a Liberty Media investor Q&A in Las Vegas yesterday. “As much as Drive to Survive is enormous to a lot of people in this room and 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 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. It’s going to be amazing.”

Maffei said F1 is aware it needs to begin looking beyond Drive to Survive for potential sources of new viewers. “The Simpsons has gone on for [over] 20 years, but there aren’t that many shows that were on that long,” he said.

“Drive to Survive is wonderful. But we cannot rely on Drive to Survive to be our only promotion vehicle forever. You’ve got to keep it fresh. Change the game.

“That’s one of the things I’d like to think we’ve done with the team entering Formula 1, credit to Stefano [Domenicali, CEO]. What we’ve done more recently around other kinds of Instagram and TikTok and the like, we’re keeping it fresh and different.”

Hamilton has previously said the film will be “the best racing movie that’s ever existed.”

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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31 comments on “F1 confident Hamilton-Pitt film will dwarf “enormous” popularity of Drive to Survive”

  1. The Simpsons series has actually been on the air for over 30 (34 this year) years, with the likes of South Park 26 this year, & Family Guy 24, not to mention some anime franchises have been around even longer, still getting new episodes & feature films, but I get his general point about DTS.
    I don’t expect the new film to be much different from DTS in principle.

    1. 😂🤦‍♂️🤷‍♂️

  2. It could be the biggest hit movie and it still wouldn’t have anything close to the influence of DTS because people love reality schlock and they generate ongoing conversation and buzz nearly year-round rather than for a month or so.

  3. Racing movies are very difficult. You can get the racing right (Le Mans) or you get the story right (Days of Thunder) but it’s rare to get both of them together.

    Driven (2001) was supposed to be the mega Hollywood blockbuster that brought open-wheel racing to the modern silver screen. But it was awful. It didn’t get the story or the racing right. It also had major Hollywood names behind it (Stallone, Harlin, Reynolds) and used current-generation drivers (Hakkinen, Villeneuve, Salo, Coulthard, Alesi, Papis, Brack, C. Fittipaldi, and Paul Tracy) as consultants.

    1. I enjoyed Driven, but mostly due to the uncanny performance of Daniel Brühl.

      1. I think you’re thinking of Rush.

  4. Will Pitt play Christian Horner? Despite the best efforts of Raikkonen and Alonso, a driver in his sixties just doesn’t ring true.

    1. Vanity will put him in a car nevertheless I suspect

  5. I fear the movie will try to force some completely contrived woke messaging down the audience’s throat. Hope I’m wrong, could do with a decent f1 movie.

    1. What is woke messaging?

    2. Thanks for the view from under your bridge

    3. I am sure there will be a character fighting against all odds who found nothing but adversity and discrimination on his endeavours but he became the biggest nevertheless against expectations, while everyone was against him. Classic.

  6. Don’t worry, I’m sure you’ll find something to get upset about!

  7. I’m not really interested in the movie. What I am interested in is Keanu’s Brawn GP documentary. Just give that already!

  8. What’s drive to survive?

    1. An mid 00’s video game in which you are being chased and have to get away in a car

  9. Hmmmm is casting complete?
    If not and they are going to have someone portray a “Bernie” like person, I’m available. Right stature, getting or lack of it, hair , closing in fast on age and a “don’t ask Bernie for anything ,
    He’s that mean he wouldn’t” give a dead fly to a blind spider..” attitude.

    1. Bernie has already agreed to play himself for $1,5bn.

  10. The most effective way to get more viewers is to have the best races on the most freely accessible platforms.

    Movies may have big names attached that attract a bunch of people – but at the end of the day, simply the premise of a car racing movie is going to turn people off.
    Already, at least two of the big names involved have turned me off.

    1. The most effective way to get more viewers is to have the best races on the most freely accessible platforms.


  11. Driven was a fictional story. Rush was a docu-movie about niki lauda vs james hunt basically. How are we supposed to get things right when our fans cant remember the movies and their names right hahaha! 😜

  12. Electroball76
    15th April 2023, 9:43

    Brad Pitt as Barney Thunderstone, President of Formula Racing

    1. BLARNEY …

  13. So the races in England, Japan and Brazil, to name just a few audience favourites, are on a “whole other level” than the as of now never run Las Vegas race. That’s nice. And Netflix’ fake drama show, which has been one of the main drivers of online enthusiasm for F1, is “not that big”. But hey! F1 is on Chinese TikTok!

    His pr person must love working with this guy.

  14. Films are very hit and miss. There is no certainty this film will be any good. Having good people involved makes it more likely it will be good, but is no guarantee.

  15. Might download it to have a laugh, who knows. Wont be a boxoffice hit for sure

  16. I look forward to the standard racing film troupes. Like the extra bit of accelerator pedal they haven’t been using until now or the driver telling the engineers they need to make the car lighter because that thought had never occurred to them before. It’s always good for a laugh, as the great line goes ‘granny shifting not double clutching like you should’ (in drag race FFS, why on earth would you double clutch in a drag race! You’d flat shift if anything!)

  17. As with any film project, the proof’s in the pudding- notwithstanding all the hyperbolic pre-release declarations of the insiders. Pitt’s participation is not a given game changer if you take into account all the wooden, off-target performances he’s offered up in recent years, and while Hamilton can certainly offer verisimilitude and insider accuracy, he’s no film maker. Which of us didn’t question a bit Ron Howard (Opie!) taking on the challenge of ‘Rush’, yet that film is a solid entertaining representation of F1 during the Lauda years.

  18. harsh vardhan harsh vardhan
    17th April 2023, 9:35

    America please leave Formula One as is

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