The Birmingham News reported this morning of an open call for extras in the upcoming film “42,” about Baseball Hall of Fame inductee Jackie Robinson. The casting call will occur Monday, April 10 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Boutwell Auditorium. A second casting call is scheduled for Tuesday in Chattanooga, TN.
The film’s casting directors are looking for men and women ages 18 and older to play stadium crowds, fans, umpires, and coaches. Headshots and 1940s attire are encouraged. The movie is tapped to be filmed in Alabama and Tennessee later this year. Harrison Ford is slated to play Dodgers vice president Branch Rickey, and Chadwick Boseman will play Robinson.
Robinson was the first African-American to play major league baseball. He helped the Brooklyn Dodgers win the World Series in 1955 and retired in 1957 with a batting average of .311. He was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1962, becoming the first African-American to have the honor. He continued his advocacy for social change and served on the board of the NAACP until 1967. In 1972, the Dodgers officially retired his uniform number “42.” Robinson died in 1972 from heart problems and diabetes.
To perhaps help give aspiring actors that "extra" advantage, here are some materials to help prepare for the part:
• “I never had it made” by Jackie Robinson as told to Alfred Duckett
• “First class citizenship : the civil rights letters of Jackie Robinson” edited by Michael G. Long
• “Jackie Robinson of the Brooklyn Dodgers” by Milton J. Shapiro
• “Jackie Robinson : a life remembered” by Maury Allen
• “Jackie Robinson” by Richard Scott
• “Jackie Robinson : an intimate portrait” by Rachel Robinson with Lee Daniels
• “Jackie Robinson : a biography” by Arnold Rampersad
• “Jackie Robinson and the integration of baseball” by Scott Simon
• “Amazing baseball heroes : inspirational Negro League stories” by Bryan Steverson
• “Jackie Robinson: Champion for Equality” by Michael Teitelbaum (Children’s)
• “Jackie Robinson : hero of baseball” by Carin T. Ford (Children’s)
• “Jackie Robinson” by Philip Abraham (Children’s)