Bana to write and produce Hailwood story

Eric Bana sure has come a long way since first appearing on our screens in the hit comedy series Full Frontal.

The now Hollywood A list celebrity has his own film production company and a long list of starring roles to his credit. Of course he also endeared himself to us rev-heads with the personalised story of his life-long infatuation with his XB Falcon Coupe in ‘Love the Beast’.

Bana also happens to be a handy motorcycle rider with plenty of track day experience under his belt and a distinct penchance for Italian motorcycles.

Those riding skills will be put to the test if the planned production of a new movie that details the TT comeback story of Mike ‘The Bike’ Hailwood comes to fruition.

MV Agusta Mike Hailwood
Mike Hailwood on an MV Agusta

Hailwood was a king of the Isle of Man TT as well as Grand Prix racetracks around the world, on both two wheels and four.

Hailwood at Silverstone
Hailwood at Silverstone

Hailwood had 12 TT victories to his name before retiring from motorcycle racing in 1967 only to come back to the TT in 1978 with Ducati. His return was a well fabled success.

Honda RC166 as ridden by Mike Hailwood
Honda RC166 as ridden by Mike Hailwood

The story of Hailwood does end in tragedy though. Only a couple of years after he returned to the TT he, along with his young daughter, were killed in a car accident after a truck turned in front of his Rover.

1960 Hailwood 350 Desmo
1960 Hailwood 350 Desmo

“We are absolutely thrilled that Eric Bana and Robert Connolly have taken Mike’s story to adapt into a feature film about his historic ‘comeback’ race win,” said Hailwood’s widow Pauline Hailwood, and their son David as quoted in American publication Deadline. “We are delighted that Mike will be depicted by Eric Bana, an actor with an immense passion and knowledge of motorsports, Mike’s career, and a rider himself.”

Mike Hailwood/Yamaha TZ750. ’78 marked the serious start of Mike’s racing comeback after his trying his hand in some historic races and the Castrol 6 Hour the year before. He was one of the select few TZ 750 riders to be supplied with 36 litre fuel tanks that enabled them to complete the Unlimited GP without refueling.
Mike Hailwood/Yamaha TZ750. Bathurst 1978 marked the serious start of Mike’s racing comeback after trying his hand in some historic races and the Castrol 6 Hour the year before. He was one of the select few TZ 750 riders to be supplied with 36 litre fuel tanks that enabled them to complete the Unlimited GP without refueling – Image Phil Aynsley