Newcomer Chadwick Boseman in Talks to Play Jackie Robinson in Biopic 42

by     Posted 2 years, 132 days ago

Legendary Pictures is moving quickly on their Jackie Robinson drama 42. Written and to be directed by Brian Helgeland (L.A. Confidential), the film chronicles how Brooklyn Dodgers general manager Branch Rickey and Robinson worked together to eradicate segregation in baseball in 1947. Just yesterday we reported that Harrison Ford was being eyed for the Rickey role, and now Variety reports that the studio has settled on relative newcomer Chadwick Boseman (The Express) to take on the role of famed ballplayer Robinson.

There’s no update on Ford’s involvement, but I’d really like to see him sign on. It’s been so long since he’s done any heady dramatic work, and I think the role of Branch Rickey would be a nice challenge for him. With the role of Robinson set, hopefully we’ll hear more casting news soon.

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  • Hiro the Eighth Samurai (and 14th Assassin)

    I hope he does Jackie Robinson proud, and the same goes for the movie. He does share a resemblance to the real deal.

  • Jason

    As usual, Hollywood cannot make a big movie about a nonwhite person’s story without somehow sticking in a white person also as the lead.

    Interesting Ford’s name is being thrown around as Harrison Ford was executive producer on film he did called “Extraordinary Measures” where casted himself as “Dr. Robert Stonehill” who according to Ford’s movie cured Pompe disease even though in real life the person who did was a Taiwanese doctor by the name of Dr. Yuan Tsong Chen.


    • Peter

      Harrison Ford is being eyed to play Branch Rickey, who was white. Know your history.

      • Jason

        Did I say that Rickey wasn’t white?

        Or did I write, “Hollywood cannot make a big movie about a nonwhite person’s story without somehow sticking in a white person also as the lead.”

        Me bringing up “Extraordinary Measures” was to give an example of how Hollywood will try to find a way to put white people in a nonwhite story even if that means they have to change races of the leads.

        Learn how to read.

  • tazmaniak

    I think you mean “relative unknown”, as opposed to “relative newcomer”.Boseman has been acting on TV and film for at least 8 years, so while he is an unknown, he isn’t a newcomer.

  • Strong Enough

    I know what Jason is saying. You can’t have a biopic of someone who isn’t Caucasian without having a Caucasian in the same spotlight as the minority. Look at Invictus. Stick Matt Damon in there and BAM hollywood gold. But what can you do tho.

  • Elitist Prick

    I agree that any story of a non-white historical figure has a tendency to be “whitewashed” in Hollywood films by the inclusion of a white lead (The Last King of Scotland and Invictus being prominent examples). It’s a symptom of a major problem in the film industry concerning representing race with honesty and maturity. However, to be fair, the whole point of the Jackie Robinson story, at least the one most people are interested in, is one that involves him being surrounded by white people. You know, he was the ONLY African American in the Majors, which is kind of the point.

    • Jason

      I’m not saying that there shouldn’t be any white people in a Jackie Robinson story. What I’m saying is that if you look at the fact that Ford is being considered for a role and the fact that Robinson is to be played by a relatively unknown then it is highly likely that Rickey will get equal amount of time as Robinson in this movie and both will be main characters rather than Robinson being the main character.

      Going by the history of Hollywood it’s being done because the bigots on top can’t stand to see a movie about a nonwhite person without another main character that is white also.

      • Ringbearer1420

        That’s been american history, everybody has to work together or it doesn’t work. Would you say a john brown movie is whitewashed because john brown’s white?
        Robinson broke barrier and was able to do so because he had support. When all the ‘fans’ are yelling slurs at you and hoping you die, you need support and for me at least that’s part of the beauty of the story. Not wanting to see the teamwork/commeradery aspect is to want to see a glorified version that teaches no lesson.
        Elenor Roosevelt was rich and white, yet in her 70′s she was driving through the south to register blacks to vote even though the KKK was trying to kill her.
        Seriously at least wikipedia history or don’t bother, it’s been a team effort since Washington made a clear effort to free all his slaves before he died and set a standard tyat slavery is wrong.

  • the truth

    Hey they already made a Jackie Robinson story staring Jackie Robinson and ruby Dee lol all other movies would just suck

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