'42' Film Crews Pack Up and Leave Macon

10:26 PM, Jun 20, 2012   |    comments
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Put away the 1940s costumes and pack-up the baseball gear. The filming of "42" wrapped Wednesday afternoon in Macon.

Before they left town, crews allowed a news crew behind the curtain and onto the set of the final"42" scene in Macon.

For two weeks, security kept news crews at bay, behind the tape and a quarter of mile away from Luther Williams Field.

On the final day, publicist Ernie Malik at last let us inside the gates to see the lights, cameras and the action.

The scene depicted Jackie Robinson's first at-at, minus the actor playing Robinson, but with his stunt double. 

EXTRAS REFLECT ON THE HISTORICAL SIGNIFICANCE OF "42"

Malik said Chadwick Boseman and the other major stars, including Harrison Ford, already left town.

Malik said, "There was something magical about those who saw Harrison Ford here in town, those who didn't. There's kind of interesting myth that comes along with someone of his stature."

The behind-the-scenes tour showed us hundreds of dummies filling the stands, a smattering of extras and a taste of how the movie business works.

SLIDESHOW | LAST DAY OF FILMING FOR "42" CREW

13WMAZ chatted with some lesser known actors like Jamie Ruehling. He is an assistant school principal from Colemont, Tennessee and plays Robinson's friend and teammate, Spider Jorgenson.

Ruehling said, "If something like this leads to other things, that would be great."

The extras and actors offered a few tidbits, such as that last week, Jackie Robinson's 89-year-old widow, Rachel, came to watch filming.

Extra Paul Bronson said, "She is amazing, very humble, happy to see this film being made."

Ernie Malik said Mrs. Robinson wanted to meet many of the actors. He said, "When each of these actors stepped-up and said, I'm playing Ralph, or I'm playing Spider, She said, 'Oh yeah.' You could see the sparkle in her eye of the memories that brought back."

Malik said Mrs. Robinson owns the rights to her late husband's story, and that many producers have tried over the years to get her to consent to making a movie. She finally agreed in 2010 to the "42" script. Malik said a movie about his story was almost made in the 1970's, and she wanted Sidney Portier to play Robinson.

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The film crews planned to leave town Wednesday afternoon, after cleaning-up their gear and restoring the sets to the original form.

Malik would not tell us the budget for the film, but said it's less than $60 million. He said this is not a big budget film, but the producers got a lot of bang for their buck, and people will be able to see that when "42" hits theater's next April.

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