Read Shockya's exclusive interview with Stephen Bishop, who plays former Major League Baseball outfielder David Justice in the upcoming biographical comedy-drama ‘Moneyball,’ which is based on the true story of Billy Beane, the general manager of the Oakland Athletics. The film, which is based on the novel “Moneyball: The Art of Winning an Unfair Game” by Michael Lewis and is set to be released on September 23, 2011, also stars Brad Pitt as Beane. Bishop discusses with us, among other things, how being friends with Justice prepared him for his portrayal, and how well his working relationship with Pitt was.
Shockya (SY): You portray former Major League Baseball outfielder David Justice in the upcoming film ‘Moneyball,’ Did being a player in the Pioneer Minor Baseball League yourself in the 1990s influence your decision to portray David, who played for the Athletics in 2002, in the film?
Stephen Bishop (SB): No, it didn’t influence the decision, but it definitely helped give me a bit of perspective. Having an idea, at least on some level, of what professional baseball players go through and the emotions they experience was a huge advantage when attempting to accurately portray David.
SY: What was your audition process like for the movie? Did you have to go through any try-out periods to prove your playing skills for director Bennett Miller and the producers?
SB: I had four auditions. One was a tryout where I had to show my skills, but the other three were strictly acting auditions.
SY: How did you prepare for the role? Did you meet David and/or do research into his life and career before you began filming?
SB: I actually already knew David from my playing days with the Braves. He and I are friends, and have been since then, so it wasn’t too hard to prepare. I idolized him as a kid and so I knew his mannerisms, etc., so that made it quite easy to transform physically. I called him and asked him some questions about his mindset during that time in his career and his relationship with Billy Beane. He was very helpful and generous with his insights.
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