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The Game Plan is a 2007 family comedy film directed by Andy Fickman and starring Dwayne Johnson.

This is the last movie in which Johnson uses his ring name "The Rock."

This is also the last Disney movie to be distributed by Buena Vista, due to Disney semi-retiring the name in May 2007, making all other future Disney movies (starting with Enchanted) permanently distributed by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures.


The last game of the regular football season between the Boston Rebels and the New York Dukes ends in a touchdown by Rebels quarterback Joe Kingman after he runs it into the end zone, ignoring an open wide receiver, Sanders. The next morning, Kingman gets a surprise when an eight year-old girl named Peyton Kelly (Madison Pettis) shows up at his doorstep saying that she is his daughter and that her mother sent her here to meet him. Kingman's agent, Stella Peck (Kyra Sedgwick), thinks this will be bad for his image, and distracts him with the upcoming playoffs.

At the opening of Kingman's restaurant, he leaves without Peyton, and the next morning is on cover of a tabloid in a magazine article. As a result, Peck decides Kingman needs a new fatherly image. Later, at a press conference, the reporters make Kingman miserable, until Peyton starts speaking and says that he is new to this and is trying the best he can, and that she thinks he is the best father in the world. To pay her back for clearing his image at the press conference, Peyton has Kingman take her to a ballet academy run by Monique Vasquez. Vasquez has Kingman join their ballet performance to show him that ballet takes just as much athletic ability as football. Kingman and Peyton begin their relationship after Peyton calls his arrogant and selfish behavior to his attention. Kingman takes Peyton and her friends to the mall where he begins to get along with Vasquez.

The Rebels eventually make it to the championship game and Stella tells Kingman that if he wins, he will be offered a $25 million endorsement with Fanny's Burgers, a successful fast food restaurant run by Samuel Blake Jr. While at lunch with Peyton and Vasquez, Peyton accidentally tells Kingman that her mother does not know that she is with him, and that she was supposed to go to a ballet school program this month, but she ran away to be with him. He gets upset at her, and she has an allergic reaction to the nuts in the dessert, causing Kingman to rush her to the hospital for treatment. The doctors tell Kingman that she is going to be fine, while his former sister-in-law and Peyton's legal guardian, Karen Kelly, arrives. Kingman comes to realize that Sara, Kingman's ex-wife and Peyton's mother, had died in a car accident six months ago. After overhearing Peck explaining that Peyton would be a distraction to Kingman, Karen and Peyton return home, leaving a miserable Kingman behind. As the championship game begins, Kingman's thoughts keep drifting back to Peyton and he is distracted from performing well and he is injured near the end of the second quarter, causing him to be rushed to the locker room as a result.

However, he is surprised to discover that Peyton has arrived with Karen. Peyton tells him to never give up. Near the end of the fourth quarter, Kingman passes the ball to the running back, Webber, who gains positive yardage but fails to get out of bounds so the clock continues to run. Kingman rushes to call a final play and successfully does so. With no time left on the clock he scrambles for a few yards but as he is being hit he throws a lob pass to Sanders who catches the pass, and the Rebels win their first championship. When being interviewed after the game, Joe announces that he will take his daughter home, thus ignoring the endorsement with Fanny's Burgers, saying that he would rather stay with Peyton. The film ends with Kingman, Peyton, and Vasquez dancing together in Kingman's apartment.





Production & box office performance

Johnson's character taking ballet lessons in the movie was an indirect nod to Pro Football Hall of Famemarker wide receiver Lynn Swann, who took ballet lessons during his NFL career with the Pittsburgh Steelers. Swann later worked as a reporter for Disney-owned ABC & ESPN. Swann left Disney for a career in politics while The Game Plan was in pre-production.

Produced at an estimated cost of US$ 22m ,the movie grossed $90,636,983 in the U.S market and $56,625,444 in foreign ticket sales and bring it to a grand total of $147,262,427. It opened at #1 at the box office grossing $22,950,971 in its first weekend in 3,103 theaters and averaging $7,396 per venue. It closed on February 18, 2008 with a final domestic gross of $90,636,983, and an additional $47,129,669 in other territories bringing the worldwide total gross to $137,766,652. This as well as the $45.79 million the film earned on DVD in its stay on the Top 50 chart, clearly makes this film a profitable venture for Disney.

Critical reception

The film received mixed reviews from critics. Rotten Tomatoes currently gives The Game Plan a 27% rating on its' site, indicating "rotten reviews;" the consensus stated; "Despite Dwayne Johnson's abundant charisma, The Game Plan is just another run-of-the-mill Disney comedy."

DVD release

The Game Plan was released on Disney DVD and Disney Blu-ray on January 22, 2008. Through April 27, 2008, DVD rentals for The Game Plan were able to stay in the Top 50 chart, while earning more than $48 million. Special features include deleted scenes, bloopers, and audio commentaries.


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