Watch Chadwick Boseman, Nicole Beharie As Jackie Robinson & Wife In First Trailer For '42'

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by Courtney
September 20, 2012 8:09 PM
38 Comments
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WB set an official release date of April 122013 for 42, its Jackie Robinson biopic that Brian Helgeland is directing for Legendary Pictures.

Relative newcomer Chadwick Boseman (who's worked primarily in television on shows like FringeJustified and Castle) is playing Jackie Robinson in the film, with Nicole Beharie as Robinson’s widow, Rachel Robinson, née Rachel Isum.

Also Harrison Ford co-stars as Branch Rickey in the film - the Brooklyn Dodgers' manager who made history by signing Robinson as the first black player in the history of the Major League Baseball organization.

Brian Helgeland directs from a script he also wrote, which tells Robinson's story, as the first African-American to play in the major leagues.

The WB has just unveiled the film's very first trailer, and poster - both embedded below:

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38 Comments

  • Nadell | September 24, 2012 3:05 PMReply

    I agree w/ everyone's sentiments. Initially, I thought I'd be the only one who felt it odd & ill-placed the trailer's background music. It kinda dampered the overall affect....nonetheless, I do want to see this film! Very pleased w/ who are cast!

  • Derek | September 21, 2012 4:45 PMReply

    Jay's Music just showed up in 4 trailer in the past 6months.. All "Warner Bro's" Pictures! Something Strange going on. (Good for him though) & I dig the Trailer regardless!

  • Darkan | September 21, 2012 2:02 PMReply

    And the blogs are ON FIRE about why would a studio put Jay Z music to a historical film trailer? Again, my question in the beginning was who is this film being pushed to? Young audiences? Black audiences? It doesn't make any sense. Black people hardly favor baseball let alone support historical films. The lackluster box office of Red Tails proves that. Putting hip hop in a trailer causes white America to tune out and will not encourage the urban generation to go see a film about baseball when baseball is not on the list of things they admire. The Help was a historical film and did not need hip hop music in it's trailer to sell the film and it was a HUGE box office hit. YOUNG & OLD alike supported that film. I still believe it was a VERY bad move and they should hit with another trailer as soon as possible.

  • Ralph Speil | September 22, 2012 9:14 AM

    Not true. Some of the highest paid baseball players are people of color. Many blacks love baseball. I have three sons and they all play baseball. My daughter plays softball. It's also not true that blacks do not support "historical" films. It depends on the subject. More importantly, this is NOT a black film. It's an american story and baseball IS America's game. Also, the music is the least of it's problems. Who is not going to see a movie because of it's music score? The music will attract who it's suppose to (and you'd be surprised who that is) Plan and simple, the first attraction for most is the genre (subject) , the actors and then the director. For many the director comes first.

  • Akimbo | September 21, 2012 2:15 PM

    Seems to me that they're going for "cool," framing him as a legendary badass. Off the top of my head, trailers for Django Unchained and American Gangster used rap music to the same effect. Was just about to bring up A Knight's Tale, too, but I see I've been beat to it. It used anachronistic "cool" music both in its trailers and in the actual film.

  • mstradford | September 21, 2012 1:35 PMReply

    This looks promising. While I understand the complaint about modern music, I believe it's smart to try something to make the film appealing to people under 75 years of age. Historically, most black oriented films that aren't set in the present day don't make money, for whatever reason, so it makes sense to try a different marketing approach. It can't hurt. Now, before someone says 'Ray' and/or 'Dreamgirls' made money, I'd argue that by the time 'Ray' came out, Ray Charles was a beloved American figure, not just a black one, and 'Dreamgirls' had achieved legendary status as a play long before becoming a film. But look at films like 'Devil in a Blue Dress', with Denzel AND Don Cheadle, 'Talk to Me', 'Cadillac Records', and countless others, hardly any were financial successes, unfortunately. Critical acclaim often, but soft box office. I'm hopeful that '42' will help usher in a new day of opportunity for films of color from all eras.

  • Priss | September 21, 2012 9:01 AMReply

    Hard to make a trailer about dated material and someone most younger people have no clue about. They did it. Hope the film is as EXCELLENT. I don't see how people can hate on this trailer. Oh, yeah. Haters gon' hate. Regardless.

  • CareyCarey | September 20, 2012 11:43 PMReply

    This smells like a sappy B-Flick, better suited for the lifetime channel. All the white folks can stand and cheer good ol' Branch Rickey. Come to think of it, they should name this "42: Blindside 2012". And until she shows me something different, Nicole Beharie is overrated by the black community. Yeah, wishful thinking. Seriously, other than American Violet (2008), which btw Alfre Woodard pulled her up, what has she really brought to the table?

  • CareyCarey | September 23, 2012 8:11 PM

    Misha, I was just thinking how new and improved you have become. Because of your many "exchanges" with some of the more insightful, courageous and well written debaters such as Jug, Bondgirl, Blutopaz and Nadine, you were forced to pick-up your game. Your words are more measured (thought out) and you stay on point. But then... to my surprise... out of nowhere... you went back to the most lamest of lame rebuttals--> "Carey, how could you make that declaration about Django when you haven't even seen the film". Now come on Misha, although I haven't seen the film, we have agreed (for the most part) on what constitutes a "white savior". First, it's generally someone to be admired. In many cases it's someone others would love to be or emulate. In the case of "Blindside", Sandra Bullock was the attractive, rich and caring white woman. Many harbor a desire to be just like her. Branch Rickey is the wise and caring grandfatherly businessman who endured the scorn of many to enrich the lives of the less than. Again, many would love being associated with him. But now we're left with the gun-totting killer who also happens to be a BOUNTY HUNTER! That's not an admirable profession, nor is he someone we'd want our children to emulate. Consequently, having said all of that, I don't have to "see" Django Unchained to discern whether or not Dr. King Schultz (Christoph Waltz) fits the mold of the quintessential "White Savior". @ DONELLA, say it loud girl! Unfortunately, I believe your point may flown over their heads

  • Donella | September 23, 2012 3:22 PM

    LOVE the summation of key plot points! ****Let's see, "nigga, you can't eat there"... true that. Black man gets called nigger, darkie and coon throughout the whole damn movie.... true-true- true story. "Nigga, you can't play baseball with these white boys"... true that. "Jackie, listen to me b/c i'm the white savior, Branch Rickey"... ***

  • misha | September 23, 2012 11:45 AM

    "Misha, you can see the "white savior" in Django but not in 42??>>> Huh? Where did even imply such a thing? I said Django was the ultimate white savior film and while 42 will certainly have its "white savior moments," Rickey isn't getting more or as much shine as Robinson thus far. Hence, why the Blindside/Django comparison is unfounded.

  • misha | September 23, 2012 11:32 AM

    "Is that the case in Django unchained"? NOPE! No way. Is that the case in "42"? Huuuuummmm, could be." >>> LOL Carey, how could you make that declaration about Django when you haven't even seen the film? All we have to base our opinons on thus far, are the trailers and posters for both films. And from what I've seen, Django is sharing the spotlight with his white savior/mentor while Jackie is showcased as the lead/star of 42. Perhaps each film will depict something different but frankly, I don't expect much different from Django.

  • bondgirl | September 23, 2012 10:21 AM

    Misha, you can see the "white savior" in Django but not in 42?? Say what now? I realize I'm relunctantly dipping my toe in the 4008th debate on this subject, but I can't resist asking: how would Jackie Robinson have made it into mainstream baseball without white permission/approval/vouching? More importantly, the fact that it takes white men to assist him constitutes your own definition of a white savior, correct? @Carey: You speak the truth more often than you're given credit for, so I always got love for ya! @Jug: Good points about Scorsese & Malcolm X. Wasn't Mary J Blidge salty because she didn't get Oscar nominated for her Original Song in The Help? It wasn't historical, but it was a period drama with a modern song nonetheless.

  • CareyCarey | September 22, 2012 8:32 PM

    Okay, this might be the time that I have to concede. However, let's establish some guidelines. First, I believe we're both agreeing that there is merit to the words "white savior film". To that point, in it's basic form, the savior assists a person of color in overcoming a pressing issue. Sometimes it's a life changing issue that they could not accomplish without the help of the white person in question. However, the plot thickens when the focus of the film shifts to the DO GOOD QUALITIES of the white person, not the accomplishments of the black person. There we have "Blindside". Is that the case in Django unchained"? NOPE! No way. Is that the case in "42"? Huuuuummmm, could be. I don't care what the poster is saying, nor what we saw in this short clip (but I did see a little white savioring going on) the proof will be in the film. I don't care how much time Jackie is on the screen nor how many home runs he hits, or how many times he endures the rants of racists, if his decision (right decisions) are at the behest, insistence and guidance of the good ol' caring, honest and wise white man, it's a white savior flick disguised as a historical drama. So we will see if Harrison Ford is Sandra Bullock who moved from the gridiron to the baseball diamond.

  • misha | September 22, 2012 7:32 PM

    "Beside, in respect to Django, I wasn't arguing the merits of the word "white savior" I was simply saying it was not a white savior movie." >>> I know and I don't get it all, considering that Schultz literally saves/rescues Django from slavery. Hence, why I said it's the ultimate white savior film. As for 42, both the trailer and the poster showcase Robinson/Boseman as the star, not Ford/Rickey. So yeah, your Blindside comparison appears unfounded to me.

  • CareyCarey | September 22, 2012 5:22 AM

    DUH DUH DUH on me. You guys have probably read the script, yet I'm up in here flappin' my big fat soup coolers. Hit me in the back-lot if so. Misha, no pictures this time :-). Btw, for anyone who's interested, I just saw Noel Clark's 4-3-2-1. Listen, ask me no serious questions because I cannot lie :-( WOW

  • CareyCarey | September 22, 2012 12:52 AM

    NOW GAWDDAMN... I've died and gone to heaven... I have arrived! My best-est, most favorite, realest of real peeps, Misha, Jug and Bondgirl have all come out for the party. I'll be damn, were y'all been hiding? @ Bondgirl, I was beginning to believe you didn't love ol' CareyCarey no mo' *lol*. But yeah, I understand what you're saying in respect to Rickey and the poster, so I was just running my mouth. However, I can't help but believe Harrison Ford's involvement has to be justified. @ Misha, you got me :-). I am not a big fan of Nicole Beharie. But if I was, that wouldn't change my feelings on this movie. Put Viola Davis in the role, it would still smell like a sappy made-for-tv B-Flick. re: White Savior, now come on, you can't compare the dynamics of Django Unchained to this slow historical drama. Beside, in respect to Django, I wasn't arguing the merits of the word "white savior" I was simply saying it was not a white savior movie. But this one has white Rickey saving the day (written all over it). That reminds me... JUG, whatspoppinbaby!? I'm still waiting for those front row tickets at your break-out film. But in the meantime, I don't know if Rickey needed Jackie more than Jackie needed him. The story goes that Jackie was becoming disenchanted with the negro league (at least that's what I read) so I believe it's safe to say 50/50 might be the call. I mean, although the story IS about Jackie's journey, it's driven by Branch's inclusion, his constant involvement ( tutoring Jackie and his family, ownership of the team, facing the media, talking to his clubhouse "players and such", discussions with other team owners... Some teams threatened to strike) re: The music. "mood" & tone. It's called "Creativity" for a reason. That song's lyrics are made FOR the movie, not that they just picked any jay song. It had to support the movie vs stand alone. In essence, the song "We Shall Overcome" would not fit the whole movie :-). YEP... and all the other chatter is pure poppycock. And btw, I remember you said your boy, Boseman is in this so I know you're rooting for his success. It sho was good talking with y'all again. I've missed all of you.

  • Jug | September 21, 2012 7:04 PM

    And yeah, that 42:Blindside 2012 was funny as hell LOL

  • Jug | September 21, 2012 7:04 PM

    Hey Hey Carey & Bondgirl! What's shaking?! I look at it like this. You're going to be hard-pressed to have a a movie pre-60s without white people being in the picture. At some level. In the script (don't know what happened come Ford jumping on board), but on the page I'd give it 60/40, maybe even 70/30 Robinson. The movie is more about him, his decisions, his life, his marriage & what he endured on the field. Rickey "needs" him more than the other way around & once Jackie agrees, Branch just goes a long for the ride. Now of course, come awards Ford would get "best Actor" notice cuz that's how it goes-the bigger star gets to choose what category-but he is def not the lead of the movie. The Trailer, wow! Folks are upset? People are interestingly "upset" about modern music being used for a period film but nobody screamed bloody murder when Scorsese uses it, whether in "period" or in the present, to underscore "mood" & tone. It's called "Creativity" for a reason. Theme song for BOARDWALK EMPIRE uses a song made in the 90s, but it accurately conveys a lawless, jukejoint feel (steel guitar & all). EVERY project he does uses "Gimme Shelter"...coulda sworn I heard it in LAST TEMPTATION LOL I kid, but "Revolution" by Arrested Development became THE theme song of MALCOLM X? I can't remember if any commercials/trailers used it, but that song is now synonymous with that movie, more than Beans & Cornbread" or "Someday We'll All be Free". Tho everybody remembers "A Change is Gonna Come", it was key to a certain scene, but not the essence of the whole film. Derek above has a point, there's more to it than just picking a song. That song's lyrics are made FOR the movie, not that they just picked any jay song. It had to support the movie vs stand alone. Doubt "Hawaiian Sophie" would've worked as well. But for real, nobody is noticing that Jay-Z is the hot shit at the moment? What other rapper is hanging with the PRESIDENT and The PRESIDENT has HIM on his iPod in rotation? Hell, they just took a picture together at their fundraiser all brushin' their shoulders off LOL Ron Howard & Brian Grazer are falling all over themselves to film the doc of Jays "Made in America" tour. There's one thing to be said for creative intent, and there is business/product placement & they don't have to be mutually exclusive. I do see the displeasure with anachronism, but I personally loved the song, because knowing the small bit of what Jackie went thru, a song with a refrain of "We Go hard Brooklyn" & a beat that's more of military drum beats than anything else, fits that "we're going to war" theme of the movie. Not sure it will work for all movies, but like Curry powder a dash here & there can't hurt, can it? :-D

  • misha | September 21, 2012 6:55 PM

    "Look, I don't know what bias you're referring to" >>> Well Carey, that would be your bias against Nicole Beharie for one. Let's be real...you've been downplaying her ever since her role in Shame and that is no coincidence of course. I also have to note the irony of you criticizing this film when a few months ago, you were trying to call out the critics of the ultimate white savior film, Django Unchained. Ironic, indeed!

  • bondgirl | September 21, 2012 6:09 PM

    42: Blindside 2012? LOL! I don't know if that's true, but it was still funny as hell. Boseman does look like the real deal, so I'll check it out next year. Interesting that this film received so many unfounded assumptions about Rickey being the front story, even though the title of the film clearly shows who's the priority, when the trailer and poster tell differently.

  • CareyCarey | September 21, 2012 8:12 AM

    42: The true story of an American White Savior. Synopsis: . Long before President Lyndon B. Johnson signed into law the historic Civil Rights Act, before Dick Clark's American Bandstand and before President Bill Clinton played the saxophone on the Arsenio Hall Show, Branch Rickey braved the turbulent winds of Brooklyn, New York to shine a light on black folks and help a poor negro from Cairo, Georgia. Although the other aforementioned white gentlemen displayed tremendous courage, Mr. Rickey did the unthinkable. The year is 1947, times were tough for the average american but more so for black americans. However, Branch Rickey, played by Harrison Ford, withstood side-eyes from good white folks and threats of being stripped of his golf club membership on Long Island, to let the son of sharecroppers join his baseball team, the Brooklyn Dodgers. This true story tells the journey of a good white man who went out of his way to pad his pockets with gold and win World Series Championships. Side note: On April 15, 1947, Robinson made his major league debut at Ebbets Field before a crowd of 26,623 spectators, including more than 14,000 black patrons. Black fans began flocking to see the Dodgers when they came to town, abandoning their Negro league teams and Rickey never offered compensation to the Monarchs, which he knew could not win a court battle in the 40's. YEA!!! Another one (black man) bites the dust (but that will not be in this movie). Nevertheless, this is a great **wink-wink** true story that every black American should support with their green money.

  • CareyCarey | September 21, 2012 1:32 AM

    Misha!!! Whatsup girl... I've missed you too.... where you been? Look, I don't know what bias you're referring to, but bump that, the movie still reeks of sappiness. I mean, what are we going to get out of "true" story that we don't already know. Let's see, "nigga, you can't eat there"... true that. Black man gets called nigger, darkie and coon throughout the whole damn movie.... true-true- true story. "Nigga, you can't play baseball with these white boys"... true that. "Jackie, listen to me b/c i'm the white savior, Branch Rickey"... Yep, true that. Jackie Robinson gets mad as hell but he can't say a damn thing... that's true . But wait, Jackie takes his anger out on the white ball. He knocks the cover off that SOB. YEA!!! The black folks win in the end... true story over. Misha, I don't know what the official poster is saying but that's the true story... SAPPY-SAPPY-CORNY-CORN. I rather see the story of Bingo Long and The Traveling All-Stars. Now THAT was a good heartwarming true story :-)

  • misha | September 21, 2012 1:04 AM

    lol Carey, oh how I've missed your commentary! "Blindside 2012?" Really? The fact that Boseman/Robinson features prominently in the trailer and is the lone star in the official poster is enough to dismiss said comparison. I'm afraid your obvious bias is showing!

  • lauren | September 20, 2012 10:44 PMReply

    Excellent trailer!

  • Lis | September 20, 2012 10:39 PMReply

    That is an awesome trailer. I usually hate it when they use music from a different time period in a trailer but it totally works in this one. Everything from the lyrics to the beat and the way they have cut the action to the music is so dynamic. Acting from Boseman and Ford and the cinematography looks excellent. Good to see they are not sugarcoating the segragation issue. I hope this is a big success especially for Mr Boseman. This is a great opportunity for him.

  • misha | September 20, 2012 10:29 PMReply

    Oh, I like it! Don't have a problem with the modern music. It's obviously an attempt to widen the audience which isn't a bad move at all for a period piece of this kind, I don't think. Chadwick definitely looks like he has the gravitas/screen presence to pull this off. I'm rooting for him. And of course I'm looking forward to seeing the dynamic between he and Nicole. Can't wait!

  • D.C. Kirkwood | September 21, 2012 11:44 AM

    Co-Sign. We definitely need some new and up an coming actors out here. I love these two together. I hope this film really opens more doors for the both of them. We need to remember that acting is a muscle that has to be trained. You get better and better with each quality role that you choose and the level of acting talent you work with on set. I think Ms. Beharie is doing good by switching between Commercial, Indie, and TV. She definitely has range in my opinion. They both have laid a solid foundation for their acting careers so far. He definitely looks like Jackie Robinson.

  • starry118 | September 20, 2012 10:44 PM

    I agree Misha & I'm looking forward to seeing Boseman & Beharie together as well. I was impressed with him on Lincoln Heights & Beharie in everything I've seen her in thus far. I've been looking out for this film since I saw Boseman "rumored" for the part on IMDB. 7 months!

  • starry118 | September 20, 2012 10:24 PMReply

    The writer/director of this film, Brian Helgeland, also wrote/directed "A Knight's Tale. " That movie was set in medieval times, but featured rock music, so I wouldn't be surprised if "42" also features contemporary music like that in the trailer.

  • Skrim | September 21, 2012 2:19 PM

    If it works, then it was worth it. You just never know, but it's the trend in period films now. Sophia Coppola did it with Marie Antoinette & so did Madonna for W.E.

  • Darkan | September 20, 2012 10:06 PMReply

    What audience are they trying to reach? Change that stupid music on the trailer and put something epic and orchestrated on it. Do they want this film to fail? SMH.

  • misha | September 20, 2012 10:37 PM

    LOL It's just one trailer, Darkan. I like the music myself. Now if there aren't mutilple trailers or if they include that "stupid music" in the movie instead of something "epic and orchestrated" then, I'm with you.

  • AccidentalVisitor | September 20, 2012 10:03 PMReply

    Hate, hate, HATE the modern music used to score the second half of the trailer. Is it there to bring in the kids? Hopefully there isn't any such songs as that in the actual film because I never liked it when directors inject present day music in period movies. Breaks the spell IMO. Other than that the only other thing I didn't like in the trailer was the shot of the young boy pointing to the air in one hand (ala Babe Ruth) with a bat in the other hand. Was that supposed to be a young Jackie? It's a little too corny, syrupy and on the nose. Small complaint but, therer it is. I liked mostly everything else about it. It looks great in terms of cinematography. There is a great exchange between Jackie and Branch Rickey near the end(and by the way that guy might as well be Rickey...it is uncanny how much he looks like him). And Boseman appears to be dynamite in the role. The trailer alone would open more doors for him if this was a world of true equality. I mean when a young white actor gets a major role in such a film people in Hollywood start lining up outside his door to offer him big roles in other films even before seeing the finished product. In the end the lack of talent or lack of luck may catch up and cause that actor to fall back towards the middle of the pack but at least he gets multiple chances at bat (pun intended). But I am not aware of any other upcoming projects for Boseman. For non-white people I suppose the Hollywood moguls want to see the finished product first and then guage the raction. And even then they may not offer anything to the actor. Hopefully things will work out for Boseman better than that. Also there was that quick shot of Rachel looking at the "Whites Only" sign of that Ladies room which is such a powerful reminder considering that the wife of a player on the team doesn't have access to the same facilities that white people do. If they do show Rachel finding a bathroom however I hope they make it one of those unisex closet spaces that black people were so often stuck with in such venues. No sugarcoating please.

  • D.C.MovieCritic | September 22, 2012 9:53 AM

    AccidentalVistor, I do not believe you can support your statement. What white actor had "big roles" waiting for him upon merely receiving a major role in a film "such as this"? Shouldn't you take into account the previous exposure of both actors? I do not know of any white actor (I've been critiquing films for 20 years) with Chadwick Boseman's background who received a big role before the reviews and statictics of his initial film were tabulated.

  • AccidentalVisitor | September 20, 2012 10:12 PM

    Wait. Harrison Ford is the one playing Rickey?!? Get out of here. That's a great makeup job.

  • Taz | September 20, 2012 8:20 PMReply

    I am excited about this movie!

  • AccidentalVisitor | September 20, 2012 10:11 PM

    Wait. Harrison Ford is the one playing Rickey?!? Get out of here. That's a great makeup job there.

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