The Real Story: Eddie the Eagle

Posted on February 26, 2016 at 9:49 pm

Here’s the real Eddie the Eagle telling his story.

Smithsonian Magazine wrote:

A quarter century ago British plasterer-turned-ski jumper Michael Edwards made a name for himself—Eddie the Eagle—by not skiing or jumping very well at the Winter Olympics in Calgary. Short on talent but long on panache and derring-do, he had no illusions about his ability, no dreams of gold or silver or even bronze. Blinking myopically behind the bottle glass of his pink-and-white-rimmed glasses, he told the press: “In my case, there are only two kinds of hope—Bob Hope and no hope.”

Undeterred, Edwards sluiced on. Wearing six pairs of socks inside hand-me-down ski boots, he stepped onto the slopes, pushed off down the steep ramp and rag-dolled through the air. When he touched down, broadcasters chorused: “The Eagle has landed!” By taking a huge leap of faith, Edwards captured the world’s imagination and achieved the sort of renown that can only come overnight….Edwards, after all, did what Englishmen do surpassingly well­—coming in gloriously, irretrievably and spectacularly last. Of the 58 jumpers in the 70-meter event, he just missed being 59th. He also brought up the rear at 90 meters, though technically he aced out three jumpers who were scratched—one of whom, a Frenchman, failed to show because he had broken a leg on a practice run the day before.

He’s had something of a demi-celebrity life since, making two pop records, some reality television, and public appearances. This movie should keep that going for another few decades.

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The Real Story
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