Fort Worth football movie ’12 Mighty Orphans’ is heading to the big screen
Few films have been as badly affected by the pandemic as 12 Mighty Orphans, based on Jim Dent’s bestseller. But now good news – the film, which was filmed in and around Fort Worth, where the real story is based, opens in theaters in New York and Texas on June 11th, with a sneak peek in Texas on June 10th The film will hit cinemas nationwide on June 18. Sony Pictures Classics has acquired the rights to the film and has yet to announce streaming plans.
The June 11 debut comes with a starter: the film’s trailer was released on Friday and features the film’s star – Dallas’ own Luke Wilson – who looks a lot like a legendary football coach from the 1930s. The film stars Oscar winner Robert Duvall and Golden Globe winner Martin Sheen in their first film together since Apocalypse Now.
12 Mighty Orphans is a Valentine’s Day for a Fort Worth orphanage that pitched a soccer team (no less during the Great Depression) and wowed the world by ending up in the state championship game. During their amazing ascent, they even received greetings from President Franklin D. Roosevelt.
Filming of 12 Mighty Orphans around Thanksgiving – from 2019! – and then of course came the roaring force of a global pandemic that made post-production a wild challenge in 2020. The most bizarre byproduct of COVID-19 was what happened to the score.
The production team couldn’t find an American orchestra to play music that would underscore the plot, and turned to one of the few countries where something like this could actually occur in 2020 – Russia, where an orchestra in Moscow of all places provided supplies the accompaniment for a film about Texas high school football.
“It’s almost impossible to have 100 people in one room to play music, but Russia is one of the few places in the world where they can still do it,” producer Houston Hill told us in an earlier interview. “But we did it. And it sounds amazing. “
The Great Depression shadowed any frame of 12 powerful orphans and bears an “eerie parallel” to what we are going through as a nation, Hill said. That’s how up-to-date the film is. It’s about the resilient spirit of these orphans who come together and inspire the nation. You’ve got a nation in trouble, which is why the movie is so moving. “