Saturday, February 7, 2004

Tim McGraw catches a movie role

Country singer Tim McGraw has landed his first studio film deal, playing the alcoholic father of a football player in a movie starring Billy Bob Thornton.

Filming starts this week on Friday Night Lights, adapted from H.G. Bissinger's book about a West Texas town's devotion to its high school football team, according to McGraw's publicist.

McGraw will play Charlie Billingsley, who tries to relive his glory days through his son, an Odessa, Texas, high school player. Thornton plays the team's coach.

"It's an amazing opportunity and of course I couldn't help but be drawn to a story about high school football," McGraw, 36, said in a statement.

His wife, country singer Faith Hill, is appearing in a remake of The Stepford Wives scheduled for release this summer.

McGraw's father, former Philadelphia Phillies relief pitcher Tug McGraw, died last month at the singer's home near Nashville.

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