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December 10, 2011

Harrison Ford Joins Jackie Robinson Biopic

Hollywood megastar Harrison Ford has been tabbed to play famed baseball executive Branch Rickey in an upcoming biopic about Hall of Famer Jackie Robinson.

According to Variety:

Pic follows the iconic story of Robinson, the first African-American to play in the major leagues. Rickey, the innovative Major League Baseball executive who is best known for breaking MLB's color barrier by signing Jackie Robinson to a minor league contract in 1945. Two years later, at the start of the 1947 major league baseball season, Robinson was signed to the Brooklyn Dodgers major league baseball team with the help of Rickey.

As for who will play Robinson in "42"...that honor goes to the relatively unknown Chadwick Boseman.  Ironically, Boseman also appeared in "The Express"...which was based on the true story of Ernie Davis, the first African-American to win the Heisman Trophy.

On tap to direct is Brian Helgeland, whose many screenwriting credits include “L.A. Confidential" and "Mystic River”.  In 1998, Helgeland became the first person to win both an Academy Award ("L.A. Confidential") and a Razzie ("The Postman").

This isn't the first time Robinson's story has been brought to the silver screen.  In 1950, "The Jackie Robinson Story" was released with Robinson himself playing, um...himself. 

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