Saturday, December 20, 2014 · 11:45 p.m.

Major motion picture about Jackie Robinson filming in Chattanooga

Production is casting now for local baseball players to portray 1947 Brooklyn Dodgers

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A movie about Jackie Robinson's baseball career will be filming in Chattanooga this summer. (Photo: MGNOnline)

A feature film about the life of baseball hall-of-famer Jackie Robinson will be shooting in Chattanooga this summer, and a casting call for local baseball players and extras has just been announced.

Few details are available about the project and which Hollywood stars have already been cast, but representatives with Catrett Locke Casting in Atlanta said the film will begin shooting at historic Engel Stadium in May.

"We are trying to build a baseball team out of Chattanooga," Rose Locke said.

The team assembled here will portray the Brooklyn Dodgers in the film, Locke said.

Although Locke would not confirm the name of the film or the lead actors, IMDb lists Harrison Ford as playing Brooklyn Dodgers President Branch Rickey, who approached Robinson about joining the team.

The site also lists the film with the title "42," the number on Robinson's uniform issued in 1947 when he pioneered the integration of professional athletics in America.

Chadwick Boseman has been cast as Robinson, according to IMDb.

"The life story of Jackie Robinson and his history-making signing with the Brooklyn Dodgers under the guidance of team executive Branch Rickey" is all that is stated about the film on IMDb.

According to Robinson's website, "The major leagues had not had an African-American player since 1889, when baseball became segregated.  By breaking the color barrier in baseball, the nation's preeminent sport, he courageously challenged the deeply rooted custom of racial segregation in both the North and the South."

An open casting call for experienced Caucasian baseball players between the ages of 25 and 38 will be held on March 26. Details about the location of the upcoming open call were not released.

Athletes will be interviewed by the film's sports coordinator/coach and be asked to participate in a field tryout as well.

"By experienced, we mean at least college-level baseball for sure. These men will be representing a major league baseball team," Locke said.

From there, approximately 40 men will be chosen to attend a baseball training camp for the on-screen "team" that tentatively begins in April.

Locke said all of the speaking roles for members of the team have already been cast, but depending on who auditions in Chattanooga this month, some individuals may be invited to audition for additional speaking roles.

Catrett Locke Casting is also casting up to 1,000 extras who will fill the stands during the games. Locke said they are also looking for vintage cars from 1947 or older.

Shooting starts in May, and Locke said the production could be here through July. Additional calls announcing opportunities for a local crew to work on the production of the film will be announced at a later date, officials said.

Casting call for baseball players
Please send three photographs that show head and body. Include age, height, weight and a list of baseball experience, including position played. Send to clcbaseball@gmail.com.

Casting call for extras
Please send three photographs that show head and body. Include actual age, height, weight and all contact information. Please also put ethnicity and age in the subject line. Send to clcastingtn@gmail.com.

More information can be found by following the casting company's Facebook page here.

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