Jesse Owens

Jesse Owens biopic

Plenty of American heroes never quite get their due, especially cinematically, but it seems as if Olympic champion and beloved national superstar Jesse Owens is about to get an embarrassment of riches when it comes to big screen portrayals. The track and field star and four-time Olympic gold medalist rose to prominence during the 1936 games — held in Berlin, Germany — when Adolf Hitler reportedly “snubbed” Owens by refusing to shake his hand alongside other (German) winners. Although the exact nature of the snub has been debated, it is clear that Hitler meant to use the Olympics to show off his Nazi Germany and prove the superiority of German athletes, which Owens’ winning streak pretty handily derailed. However, what is clear is that our own president, Franklin D. Roosevelt, did snub Owens, who later commented: “Hitler didn’t snub me – it was FDR who snubbed me. The president didn’t even send me a telegram.” FDR also didn’t invite him to the White House, as was commonplace at the time.  Owens, who was previously the subject of a 1984 television movie (an Emmy winner, no less), may now be the subject of no less than three brand new feature films. Although it remains to be seen if all of these projects will make it to the big screen — and it seems safe to assume that not all of them will — it’s unclear who will emerge the victor of this cinematic race to the finish, so let’s get to know each […]



After being blown away by The Hurt Locker, I was lucky enough to talk to Mackie about his role, the experience of the Middle East during Ramadan, his work with Matt Damon, his friendship with Wynton Marsalis, and his confidence in Kathryn Bigelow’s Oscar chances.

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published: 01.29.2015
published: 01.28.2015
published: 01.28.2015
published: 01.28.2015

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