The man who secured Sonny Bill Williams’ return to rugby league claims Hollywood has been in touch with the Toronto Wolfpack to document the Canadian club’s rapid rise to the English Super League.
The deal makes the 34-year-old the highest-paid player in both rugby union and rugby league.
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Toronto’s acquisition of Williams significantly bolsters their playing stocks ahead of their first season in the Super League, which comes three years after the club was formed.
Two promotions in three seasons means the Wolfpack will make their debut in England’s premier domestic league in 2020, and their ascent through the divisions is enough to have spurred interest from a Hollywood producer regarding a film about the team, according to Toronto’s owner David Argyle.
“We have a really good IT department and server, and it crashed. We had 70,000 people trying to access it the minute it went live,” the Canadian businessman and Australian mining magnate told Sky Sports Radio in Australia.
“Some very large companies have contacted us to get involved. I’m meeting a producer from Hollywood who is flying out on Sunday from LA to meet with me, he wants to shoot the true, gritty behind the scenes of how and why we’re here, the story of our road to the Super League.”
— RugbyPass (@RugbyPass) November 15, 2019
It isn’t the first time the prospect of behind-the-scenes filming has been discussed since Williams’ arrival at the Wolfpack.
As part of his $5m-per-season contract, he will also take a share of the club and will play a starring role in a Netflix series about the team.
It is hoped that Williams’ presence in Canada will boost the profile of rugby league in the country as the Super League attempts to tap into the enormous North American market.
While he features frequently in headlines throughout Australasia, Williams’ signing with the Wolfpack is yet to make waves among Toronto’s sporting media websites, with the focus of sports news remaining firmly on the likes of the storied Toronto Maple Leafs NHL franchise and reigning NBA champions, the Toronto Raptors.
Nevertheless, the Wolfpack’s head coach Brian McDermott has suggested that his side’s addition of Williams is similar to that of David Beckham’s move from Real Madrid to Major League Soccer club LA Galaxy in the United States 12 years ago.
“The excitement he will bring to the sport of rugby league in this country will be incredible,” Wolfpack CEO Bob Hunter said in the statement confirming the club’s move for Williams.
“Having someone of his talent join the Wolfpack will greatly raise the profile of the club, and also help move the game forward globally. Sonny is a phenomenal athlete and we believe he is rugby’s LeBron James and his addition to our league is comparable to when David Beckham joined LA Galaxy. “
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