In 1993, Disney’s Cool Runnings put Olympic bobsledding in the spotlight with its tale of an underdog team from Jamaica that defied the odds to compete on the same track as the world’s greatest athletes, and now Eddie the Eagle seems poised to do the same for ski jumping.
Kingsman: The Secret Service star Taron Egerton portrays celebrated Olympic ski jumper Eddie “The Eagle” Edwards in the 2016 film, and now you can watch the first trailer for the comedic biopic that co-stars Hugh Jackman and Christopher Walken.
A skier who became the first athlete to represent Great Britain in Olympic ski jumping, Michael Edwards became a national hero when he made it to the 1988 Winter Olympics in Calgary despite a long list of physical, financial, and political hurdles he had to overcome en route to competing against the world’s best jumpers. Hailed as a “heroic failure,” Edwards found himself in the spotlight due to the perseverance that kept him competing despite being outclassed — and more often than not, outperformed — by his competitors.
In the debut trailer for Eddie the Eagle, Egerton dons the famous, thick-lensed glasses that became one of Edwards’ most defining features — a necessary accessory due to his extreme far-sightedness, which often rendered him blind once he took to the skies during a jump. (He wasn’t able to see the ground due to his sight limitations and the way his glasses would fog up under his goggles.)
The film casts Jackman as Edwards’ mentor, Chuck Berghorn, who trained Edwards for the Olympics. Walken plays Berghorn’s own mentor in the film.
Eddie the Eagle is directed by actor-turned-director Dexter Fletcher (Sunshine on Leith), a frequent collaborator of Kingsman and X-Men: First Class director Matthew Vaughn, who also serves as a producer on the film. The screenplay was penned by Simon Kelton and Sean Macaulay.
Eddie the Eagle hits theaters February 26, 2016.