What Professional Sports Teams Are in the Most Movies?

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I asked that question at a dinner party recently and it caused a ruckus. At first, it sparked guesses and then rejecting of guesses because they seemed to betray a list of rules we hadn’t made and then it devolved into a fight about why people should watch sports. I, being unable to refuse a list-making exercise, compiled one to answer my own question. I learned several things by doing so: there are thousands of football movies but almost all of them take place in high school, college or prison; movies about professional basketball are necessarily terrible; hockey is not popular in America.

Rules for making the list:

1) The Mighty Ducks do NOT count. The sports team came after the movie and was created by the Disney corporation. Fail.

2) The movie doesn’t have to be about the team but it has to prominently feature it and the team has to play a role in the plot. This means “Silver Linings Playbook” counts for the Eagles and “Fever Pitch” counts for the Red Sox.

3) Featuring the stadium is not the same as featuring the team. “The Town” doesn’t count as trying to rob Fenway has little to do with The Red Sox.

4) This list doesn’t include documentaries.

(Ed. note: I changed the rule about no made-for-tv movies as there are some quality ones like “Brian’s Song” and “61.” Thanks to commenters for raising the flag on that.)

Here’s my preliminary shot at this. I need your help in adding more!


imageBaseball

THE YANKEES
1) Damned Yankees
2) Pride of the Yankees
3) The Scout
4) The Babe
5) Mr. Baseball
6) 61*
7) Safe at Home! (Thanks, ObitoftheDay!)
8) That Touch of Mink
9) The Trade

THE RED SOX
1) Fever Pitch
2) Fear Strikes Out
3) Game 6
4) Field of Dreams (Thanks, @ProducerLos!)

THE TIGERS
1) For Love of the Game
2) One in a Million
3) Tiger Town
4) Cobb (Thanks, SBNation!)

THE INDIANS
1) Major League
2) Major League 2
3) The Kid from Cleveland

THE PIRATES
1) Chasing 3000
2) Angels in the Outfield (1951)
3) Million Dollar Arm

THE CARDINALS
1) The Pride of St. Louis
2) Death on the Diamond
3) It Happens Every Spring

THE CUBS
1) Rookie of the Year
2) Elmer, the Great
3) Bleacher Bums

THE WHITE SOX
1) Eight Men Out
2) The Stratton Story
3) Field of Dreams

THE (BROOKLYN) DODGERS
1) The Jackie Robinson Story (Thanks, @jackshafer!)
2) It’s Good to Be Alive
3) 42 (Thanks, TheReelist!)

THE BRAVES
1) Trouble with the Curve
2) The Slugger’s Wife

THE TWINS
1) Major League 3
2) Little Big League

THE ANGELS
1) Angels in the Outfield (1994)
2) Naked Gun

THE PHILLIES
1) Summer Catch
2) The Winning Team (Thanks, Dad!)

THE As
Moneyball

THE GIANTS
The Fan

THE REDS
Hu$tle

THE METS
Frequency

THE BREWERS
Mr. 3000

THE DEVIL RAYS
The Rookie

THE NATIONALS
How Do You Know?

THE ASTROS
Night Game

THE PADRES
The Kid from Left Field

THE (LOS ANGELES) DODGERS
The Sandlot (Thanks, Chris!)

THE MARINERS
The Comrades of Summer


imageFootball

THE EAGLES
1) Invincible
2) Silver Linings Playbook
3) The Garbage Picking Field Goal Kicking Philadelphia Phenomenon (Thanks, Toney Combs!)

THE CARDINALS
Jerry Maguire

THE BEARS
Brian’s Song

THE LIONS
Paper Lions

THE RAMS
Heaven Can Wait

THE DOLPHINS
Ace Ventura

THE SAINTS
Number One

THE GIANTS
Big Fan

THE BROWNS
The Express

THE REDSKINS
Everybody’s All-American

THE COWBOYS
Black Sunday (Thanks, Keith!)

THE STEELERS
Black Sunday

imageBasketball

THE NETS
1) Just Wright
2) The Cookout

THE CELTICS
Celtic Pride

THE KNICKS
Eddie

THE LAKERS
Love and Basketball

THE SUNS
Mixed Company

THE THUNDER
Thunderstruck


imageHockey

THE PENGUINS
1) She’s Out of My League (Thanks, @theumpires!)
2) Sudden Death (Thanks, GameTimeArt!)

THE RANGERS
Mystery, Alaska