1. Welcome to SportsJournalists.com, a friendly forum for discussing all things sports and journalism.

    Your voice is missing! You will need to register for a free account to get access to the following site features:
    • Reply to discussions and create your own threads.
    • Access to private conversations with other members.
    • Fewer ads.

    We hope to see you as a part of our community soon!

"The Express": The Ernie Davis story

Discussion in 'Anything goes' started by BigSleeper, Jul 22, 2008.

  1. BigSleeper

    BigSleeper Active Member

    I just came across the trailer for a movie called "The Express," the story of Ernie Davis, the first black player to win the Heisman Trophy. It stars Dennis Quaid and the kid from "Finding Forrester" (I think that's him). It's scheduled to be released in October.

    Watch the trailer here: http://www.theexpressmovie.com/

    The trailer starts slow, but looks solid. Check it out.
  2. Simon_Cowbell

    Simon_Cowbell Active Member

    Trailer I saw this weekend left off a PRETTY significant part of the story.
  3. DanOregon

    DanOregon Well-Known Member

    How does it end?
  4. BigSleeper

    BigSleeper Active Member

    Coach finally lets him play. Sacks the Georgia Tech quarterback. Crowd goes wild.
  5. slappy4428

    slappy4428 Active Member

    Heisman? Leukemia? Minority? Jim Brown?
  6. DanOregon

    DanOregon Well-Known Member

    I'm no expert at making trailers, and God knows I hate those that give you 4/5ths of the plot points, but I think if you included the big H, the big L, and the fact that a lot of people may not know of Ernie Davis today, people will be able to fill in the blanks.
  7. slappy4428

    slappy4428 Active Member

    The Big Lead is in the Ernie Davis story?
  8. StormSurge

    StormSurge Active Member

    I'm looking forward to seeing this & I'm pretty sure I'll be bawling my eyes out. I've always been fascinated with The Elmira Express.
  9. markvid

    markvid Guest

    I resurrect this thread to post a story about how the movie has West Virginia folks pretty mad...

    New movie shows WVU fans in false, ugly light By Matthew Thompson CHARLESTON DAILY MAIL

    A movie about the first African-American to win college football’s Heisman Trophy includes a dramatic scene from Morgantown, where fans hurl garbage and racial epithets at the player and his Syracuse teammates.

    However, the ugly incident did not happen, according to players on both sides.

    Opening Friday in theaters across the nation, “The Express” is a film about Ernie Davis, who won college football’s most coveted award in 1961 and died of leukemia two years later. It stars Rob Brown as Davis and Dennis Quaid as Syracuse coach Ben Schwartzwalder.

    A review in the show business publication Variety says the movie’s “most electrifying sequences portray Schwartzwalder’s unbeaten
    1959 Syracuse U. team playing West Virginia and Texas — not exactly two bastions of racial tolerance — with a level of racist vitriol pouring out of the stands that is a topical reminder of America’s racial heart of darkness.”

    However, West Virginia and Syracuse did not play in Morgantown in 1959.

    Davis and the Orangemen visited Mountaineer Field only once, on Oct.
    22, 1960.

    Dick Easterly, 69, of Tampa, Fla., was the Syracuse quarterback that day, when Davis rushed 14 times for 125 yards before a sparse crowd of 20,000.

    Easterly saw “The Express” at a critics’ preview last week in Tampa.

    “I apologize to the people of West Virginia because that did not happen,” Easterly said.

    “I don’t blame people in West Virginia for being disturbed. The scene is completely fictitious.”

    Now in his 62nd year of writing about WVU football, Mickey Furfari was in the press box, covering the game for the Morgantown Dominion-News.

    “It’s stupid,” Furfari said of the scene. “It’s pure fiction.
    The moviemakers should be absolutely ashamed.

    “I am a strong believer in the First Amendment, and, of course, it gives people the right to express themselves in truly idiotic and embarrassing ways. This is certainly an example.”

    Furfari noted Schwartz-walder was proud of his West Virginia roots.
    Schwartzwalder was born in Point Pleasant and coached at Sistersville and Parkersburg high schools in the 1930s.

    “Ben Schwartzwalder would be turning over in his grave about this,”
    he said.

    West Virginia’s quarterback was Dale Evans, who’s a retired high school and college coach now living in Spartanburg, S.C.

    “It was 48 years ago, but something that ugly — I would have remembered that,” Evans, 71, said. “I don’t recall anything negative happening.”

    Evans, a native of Thomas in Tucker County, did recall one encounter with Davis in that 45-0 WVU loss.

    Evans was hit late out of bounds and instinctively started to retaliate against the Syracuse player when Davis intervened.

    “He grabbed my arm and said, ‘Don’t lose your composure,’”
    Evans said. “Ernie was a very composed and an in-control football player.”

    Syracuse teammate Patrick Whelan joined Easterly at the preview last week.

    Whelan, 71, of Safety Harbor, Fla., played center for the Orangemen.

    “It’s not important to the people who weren’t there,” Easterly told the St. Petersburg Times. “But we’re sitting watching this thing, saying, ‘Jeez, where did they get that from?”’

    Clendenin High School’s Donnie Young was being recruited by WVU coach Gene Corum in 1960.

    The next year, he enrolled at WVU, where he played linebacker and defensive guard.

    “That’s just awful,” he said of the scene. “I was there in the early 1960s and there was simply nothing like that happening in Morgantown, either in athletics or otherwise.

    “I’ve been involved in West Virginia football as a player, assistant coach and administrator for 43 years and I’ve never seen anything like that happen.”

    Cabell County extension agent and WSAZ-TV personality John Marra, 64, grew up in Morgantown and was a Morgantown High student in 1960.

    “I would boycott the movie,” Marra said. “I’m very embarrassed that a producer would put that type of scene in the movie.”
  10. Steak Snabler

    Steak Snabler Well-Known Member

    Not surprising. I always have low expectations of films that are supposed to be based on fact, particularly sports movies.

    Most reviews I've seen of "The Express" have been so-so. There's apparently not much character development of Davis — he's portrayed as just a really, really nice guy who gets sick and dies.
  11. slappy4428

    slappy4428 Active Member

    It's a biopic... expect nothing more, however this is really shitty and lazy.
  12. DanOregon

    DanOregon Well-Known Member

    Considering they relied heavily on Jim Brown, who had trouble with the coach, and probably had bigger brushes with racial problems when he played, I'm not surprised the movie rings less than true. At least the team isn't shown wearing Nikes and the facemasks are a lot more realistic than they were in Remember the Titans.
    What is it about movies featuring running backs,
    Brian's Song, Something for Joey, The Charlie Wedeymeyer Story (a TV flick that featured Friday Night Lights Peter Berg and Kyle Chandler), that always seem to be tear-jerkers?
Draft saved Draft deleted

Share This Page