After lightning strikes a Madden video game, Carmen ― who is super adept at playing that game ― discovers she can control her dad in real life via her game console. She secretly makes him a much better player on the field. The film largely revolves around Carmen struggling to help her dad while also trying to build her own identity with the school robotics team.
Naturally, Bobby is suddenly living his dream and harbors shockingly little guilt over why it’s happening. A suspicious hotshot young player Anderson Fisher (Rome Flynn) becomes his adversary, openly questioning how an aging player like Bobby suddenly became peak Jamal Anderson overnight.
In a brief interview with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution on set earlier this year in the bowels of Mercedes-Benz Stadium, Hardwick was just thrilled to be wearing a football outfit again.
“This has been so much fun,” he said moments after shooting a scene where he got tackled by extras who were largely former NFL players. “And getting hit like that? They’re like hugs to me. I can take it! I’m just thrilled that I’m 48 and I can play 33.”
He said he did have a crick in his neck from wearing the NFL shoulder pads. “This whole thing is surreal,” he admitted. “I’m doing all my own stunts. This is truly living out a dream.”
Indeed, Hardwick gets to ham it up, a significantly different feel from his time as the hard-nosed Ghost on “Power.”
“He’s usually in dramas so to see him in this light being in this dad zone has been so great,” said Martin.
Martin, an executive producer for the movie at just age 18, said her own father gave her pointers on how to play the Madden game. “He plays Madden all the time,” she said. “He has his own fantasy football league. He was like a professor teaching me everything. He’s a kid all over again.”
Rowland, a long-time Atlantan who was part of Destiny’s Child in the 1990s, said the opportunity to work with Martin was a gift.
“She is truly a boss,” Rowland said. “For her, the possibilities are endless. I went to a ‘black-ish’ press day and she was asked a question of who she wanted to be. ‘A legend,’ she said. She is a young Black girl able to say that with such pride and assurance. For her to have that level of self awareness speaks volumes about her parents.”
IF YOU WATCH
“Fantasy Football,” debuts on Friday, Nov. 25 on Paramount+