So the Fox-owned cable network FX is developing a made-for-TV movie about the Salt Lake Olympic bid scandal.

The thinking apparently is that instead of creating their own scandal — remember the Fox broadcast network's special "Who Wants to Marry a Multi-Millionaire?" — the folks at FX will try to make ratings hay out of somebody else's scandal. (At least nobody in Utah made anyone marry Rick Rockwell.)

The bid-scandal script isn't even written yet, but let the casting game begin! Imagine what fun it would be if we could choose the movie's stars ourselves.

Speaking of games, how about Regis "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?" Philbin as defrocked Salt Lake bid committee chairman Tom Welch? Or priceline.com pitchman William "You want it, you got it!" Shatner?

More conventionally, maybe John Goodman or Jim Nabors (in full Gomer Pyle mode).

And in the role of Welch's No. 2, Dave Johnson, we need sort of a golden boy allegedly gone bad. James Spader would be perfect; David Hyde Pierce of "Frasier" might work.

The possibilities seem endless for former Salt Lake mayor Deedee Corradini, including Anne Heche, Dyan Cannon, Christine Baranski and Susan Sullivan ("Dharma & Greg"). Joan Collins is a bit old for the role but otherwise perfect. (Too bad Margaret Hamilton of "The Wizard of Oz" is no longer with us.)

Every movie needs a hero, and SLOC President Mitt Romney will have to be ours. He'd probably like to see Tom Cruise play him, but Tommy doesn't do TV. George Clooney would be perfect, but other possibilities include David James Elliott of "JAG" and Pierce Brosnan, any of whom could ride up on a white horse.

KTVX-Ch. 4 reporter Chris Vanocur, who first broke the story, no doubt thinks he should be the hero. But reporter as hero? Not gonna happen. Keanu Reeves won't do TV, but both Robert Downey Jr. ("Ally McBeal") and Charlie Sheen ("Spin City") are currently laboring on the small screen.

Certainly not all the real-life counterparts are going to be happy with who plays them. IOC President Juan Antonio Samaranch no doubt sees himself as Antonio Banderas; Ricardo Montalban is more like it. Gov. Mike Leavitt would certainly be thrilled to see Tom Hanks get the part; somebody like Russell Johnson (the professor on "Gilligan's Island") or game-show host Wink Martindale might be more likely.

Ex-bid president Frank Joklik (whose role might be a tough one to find anyone for unless his name is changed) would no doubt like to see Sean Connery play him; Frank Langella would be closer to reality. When it comes to Joklik, however, it's too bad both Laurence Olivier (as seen in "Marathon Man") and John Banner of "Hogan's Heroes" ("I know nothing, nothing!") have passed on.

There will be no shortage of villain roles to cast, however, so why not have some fun with Jean-Claude Ganga, the ex-IOC member from the Congo who had his hand out more than most? Wouldn't "Today Show" weatherman Al Roker be a hoot?

And as various other members of the IOC, we could raid the casts of HBO's Mafia series "The Sopranos" or its prison drama "Oz." And we could look to the casts of "The X-Files" ("The truth is out there") plus "America's Most Wanted" host John Walsh as federal investigators.

On the other hand, this being a Fox-owned network, why not make it an animated movie? Think Hank Hill of "King of the Hill" for Welch. ("That boy ain't right.") Or the most perfect casting of all — Homer Simpson as Welch. ("D'oh!")

Actually, various characters from "The Simpsons" cry out to be cast.

How about Ned Flanders ("Okily-dokily") as Leavitt? Mr. Burns as Samaranch? Bart as Dave Johnson? Miss Krabappel or one of Marge's sisters, Patty or Selma, as Corradini?

Kent Brockman as Vanocur? Kwik-E-Mart owner Apu as an avaricious IOC member? Krusty the Clown and Sideshow Bob as Welch and Johnson?

Who wouldn't tune in to watch that?


E-MAIL: pierce@desnews.com