Raptors 'superfan' Nav Bhatia is getting a biopic

OAKLAND, CA: JUNE 13: Toronto Raptors super fan Nav Bhatia celebrates their 114-110 win over the Golden State Warriors in Game 6 of the NBA Finals at Oracle Arena in Oakland, Calif., on Thursday, June 13, 2019.  (Photo by Jane Tyska/MediaNews Group/The Mercury News via Getty Images)
Raptors 'superfan' Nav Bhatia will be portrayed by Kal Penn. (Photo by Jane Tyska/MediaNews Group/The Mercury News via Getty Images)

The life story of Toronto Raptors superfan Nav Bhatia is headed to the big screen with Kal Penn signed on to produce and portray the Canadian icon, according to an exclusive report from Deadline.

Bhatia expressed his excitement and gratitude on social media for the opportunity to share his story, and even offered to discuss his trash-talking strategy with Penn.

“I’m pinching myself. I have no clue what is going on in this life of mine right now. I am blessed to continue to share my story,” he said. “@kalpenn. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for accepting this role. It is an honour to have you play me.”

Penn, who became aware of Bhatia in 2016 while filming Designated Survivor in Toronto, also took to social media to share his reaction as well.

“Lots of us are basketball fans, but there’s only one @navbhatiasuperfan!” he said. “His story of perseverance and unity is incredible, and I’m super excited to bring his superfan story to the (super?) big screen.”

Stampede Ventures, an independent entertainment media company, won the rights to Bhatia’s story against stiff competition and will help produce the film. Industry Entertainment’s Dan Spilo and Yellow Mango Films' Rinku Ghei are on board as executive producers as well.

Since immigrating to Canada in 1984, Bhatia's commitment and passion for the game of basketball has expanded to helping his community with the establishment of the Nav Bhatia Superfan Foundation in 2018. The foundation is devoted to building and resurfacing basketball courts across Canada in hopes of uniting kids of all backgrounds through the enjoyment of the game.

From his humble beginnings as a car salesman to an inductee at the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame, Bhatia’s life story is one that seems primed for the silver screen.

In addition to the biopic film, a CBC documentary titled, “Superfan: The Nav Bhatia Story,” which details Bhatia’s journey to becoming the Raptors’ superfan, is set to premiere on Friday at 9 p.m. on CBC.

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