Emmy nominee Will Arnett has officially signed on to join Oscar winner Taika Waititi’s forthcoming sports dramedy film Next Goal Wins. The 30 Rock alum will be replacing Armie Hammer for the role of an unnamed executive at the Football Federation American Samoa. Arnett reportedly filmed his parts during the project’s reshoots, where his role was changed from an initially planned cameo to a slightly more developed character.
Hammer’s exit from Waititi’s next directorial effort comes after the Golden Globe nominee was caught in a social media controversy, where he was accused of sexual assault. Because of this, he left a number of high-profile projects last year including Lionsgate’s romantic comedy film Shotgun Wedding and Paramount+’s The Offer.
Based on the 2014 British documentary from Mike Brett and Steve Jamison, Next Goal Wins is an underdog sports tale following the infamous American Samoan soccer team, who were known for their terrible performance at their 2001 FIFA match. In hopes of saving the team, Coach Thomas Rongen takes on the challenge of making the world’s worst soccer team into a FIFA World Cup-qualifying unit.
The film stars Michael Fassbender, Elisabeth Moss, Frankie Adams, Oscar Kightley, David Fane, Beulah Koale, Lehi Falepapalangi, Semu Filipo, Uli Latukefu, Rachel House, Kaimana, Chris Alosio, Rhys Darby, and Angus Sampson.
Next Goal Wins is directed by Taika Waititi from a screenplay he co-wrote with Iain Morris. Garrett Basch of Film Rites, and Jonathan Cavendish of Imaginarium Productions are producing along with Brett and Jamison of Archer’s Mark.