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Michael Bay and Leonardo DiCaprio are making a movie about Rwandan cyclists

Rwandan Olympic cyclist Adrien Niyonshuti

In a surprising new direction for one of the world’s most financially successful and critically reviled action directors, Michael Bay is teaming up with Leonardo DiCaprio to produce a film about Rwanda’s national biking team. Based on true events, the film promises to have at least 75 percent fewer explosions and jive-talking robots than Bay’s usual fare. So it’s not terribly surprising to learn that Bay won’t actually be directing.

Those duties will be passed on to Orlando von Einsiedel, who directed Virunga, a DiCaprio-produced, Oscar-nominated documentary about gorillas in the Congo. DiCaprio won’t be starring in the film, just co-producing. But fear not, because the movie promises to have what every film set in Africa needs: a white guy in the lead role.


Yes, the story will focus not on actual Rwandans, but on Jacques Boyer, best known as the first American to race in the Tour de France. After retiring from cycling, Boyer was pushed out of a business partnership and jailed for an affair with a teenager. His life a shambles, Boyer traveled to Rwanda, recruiting boys who had survived genocide and extreme poverty to become the war-torn country’s national cycling team. After competing worldwide in races, one of Team Rwanda’s members, Adrien Niyonshuti, competed in the 2012 Olympics.

No word yet on casting, or when the film is expected to start shooting. Meanwhile, Bay will prepare for this serious drama about political strife and inspiring achievement by directing a time-travel action movie and the conservative fever dream-turned-thriller BENGHAZI!!!!!

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