The budding career of pro soccer player JAMES ORTEGA (28) is ended by a horrific on-field collision, leaving him distraught and adrift. Amid his depression two things happen: One, he encounters/is conned into adopting a scavenger dog, WILSON (4), and Two, he meets soccer/freestyling whiz MADAI ESCOBAR (13), a kid currently being victimized by schoolyard bullying. These three struggling souls not only bond but they harness James’ uncanny ball control skills to create and assemble a freestyling performance group James names simply: Futboleros.
The lineup includes ELLIOTT (14, Jewish), a computer nerd who loves freestyling. MARCUS (17, street tough) lives out of his (Pizza Delivery) car, a victim of his drunken stepfather’s physical abuse. SWAMPY (18) is a tall white country boy from Nebraska, lost and out of place in LA. FIDEL (17) is an illegal from San Salvador. SUZIE KIM (17). RAMON (17). CAITLIN KERN (18). MIGEL (15). And the hugely talented CARLOS (19). So, so different … yet they share one common thread: freestyling.
Meanwhile, the New York Sizzle are US Freestyling Champions, led by director JD PAYNE, a sleazeball connected with Freestyling Federation. They’ve got sponsors, commercials and DVDs, something the Futboleros seek. James’ kids love the camaraderie and practice but actually bagging commercial gigs is elusive. They land a few bar mitzvahs and birthday parties, and then with the help of LAPD Patrolwoman HALLIE SORTO (25, beautiful, James’ love interest) they get their first “real” job, performing for Benny’s Bail Bonds. It’s a big success, but bittersweet as Madai is absent, a victim of school hallway bullying and abuse. James and Hallie combine to concoct a way for the Futboleros to use their freestyling to diffuse the bullying. (It also helped that Marcus stuffed the lead bully into a bathroom urinal).
Not just a team, they’re family. Together, helping each other. They don’t qualify for the US Freestyling Finals but when two foreign groups cancel at the last minute the Futboleros get a chance. It’s then that Hallie infuses an edgy trashcan pounding primal beat into their performance as this underdog group of freestylers goes toe to toe with the champions. FREEZE FRAME.
OLD VIRGINIA FILMS & DREAMSTREET ENTERTAINMENT
WRITTEN BY ROCKY YOST
PRODUCED BY ROCKY YOST & GLORIA MORRISON