The A-Team Movie: Rampage is A+

Posted: June 13, 2010 in Marketing, UFC

In addition to being a MMA fan, I’m also a movie junkie.  I have more DVDs in my home than I’d care to admit.  I’m also guilty of loving all things 80’s, so when I heard there was a remake of one of my favorite childhood shows and it would star a top-tier MMA fighter, I had to see it on opening night (6/11/10).  How was it?  The A-Team movie delivers on all fronts.  It is action packed, funny – and hits a number of nostalgic items for fans of the old show.  But I’m not writing a full movie review here, I’m here to discuss the performance of former UFC light heavy weight champion, Quentin “Rampage” Jackson.

Jackson had the tough task of filling the shoes of 80’s icon Mr. T as Bosco “B.A.” Baracus and I have to admit he did a great job.  Unlike other MMA athletes that have tried a hand in the movie business this marks (to my knowledge) the first time a member of the MMA community had a starring role in a big budget picture.  In my opinion, Rampage did an excellent job in his debut performance.  Don’t get me wrong, this guy will likely never win an Oscar, but he has proven he can hold his own in a big budget action movie.  His dialogue was spot on among Hollywood elite like Liam Neeson and Bradley Cooper.

Although some of argued that making this movie is the reason Jackson lost a recent decision to rival “Sugar” Rashad Evans, I have to say this film can mean a lot to MMA as a whole and to Jackson specifically.

For MMA, this movie proves a few things:

  • The sport is legit. For those that though MMA was a passing fancy, get over it.  The move of a professional fighter into the Hollywood community shows that its popularity and fan base carries a cache that can bring out the movie industry’s favorite color: Green.
  • MMA athletes are not animals. Although Rampage may not be as eloquent as say Rich Franklin, he has proved there is a level of intelligence within every fighter.  Although there is a running joke about the ‘smarts’ of actors, there is no joke in what it takes to pull off an acting job.  Its tough and it can’t always be done. (May I remind you of Shaq in Kazaam or Steel?)
  • Larger, More Mainstream Sponsors. We’ve already seen Hollywood creep into the PPV events with movies paying to have a trailer shown between fights or a star interviewed by Joe Rogan at ringside.  However, if the A-Team does well it could mean more movies starring MMA stars (this could be good or bad) and larger brands looking to be associated with sponsoring PPV events. 

For Jackson this movie can mean:

  • An Increase in fan base. Rampage is already one of the most popular fighters in MMA history, but this movie has the potential to skyrocket him to new heights in popularity.  This means he could hold higher value in PPV main events
  • Attracting Larger sponsors. If this movie catapults Rampage, it will propel the number of companies that want to associate with him.  This means larger brands on his shorts when in the ring and larger products he’ll be able to hock on TV, Radio and print ads.  This means more ‘cheddar’ for Rampage.
  • A potential post-fighting career. No matter how much a fighter loves to fight, or how big their heart is, they can’t fight forever.  One must only look to boxing to see what kind of damage can occur when a fighter doesn’t get out of the business early enough.  The A-Team movie presents Rampage with the same opportunity that “The Mummy” series brought to Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson.  I have often joked with my friends that Rampage is a real-life version of “The Rock” so here is hoping he can follow Johnson’s success outside of the ring.

Now, the only thing that could hurt both MMA and Jackson is his mouth.  Although he is one of the funnier fighters when it comes to his post-fight mic skills, he is also one of the brashest.  His recent comments have come across to some as gay-bashing and have left a sour taste in their mouths.  I’ll tackle this subject in more detail in an upcoming post on whether fighters should be seen or heard from the media.

What did you think of Rampage in the A-Team?

  1. […] So Much Posted on August 23, 2010 by mixedmarketingarts As I’ve looked at MMA movies and MMA stars in Movies, this post should be of no surprise.  What is a surprise however, is the review.  For months […]

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