The Express: The Ernie Davis Story
Was originally released on Oct. 10, 2008
and now is available on DVD
The life of  Heisman Trophy Winner Ernie Davis was featured on the silver
screen in 2008.  Davis' life was tragically cut short by Leukemia soon after
his Heisman season.  The Express will be distributed by Universal Pictures
was released in the fall of 2008.
Ernie Davis: 1961 Heisman Winner
While Ernie Davis possessed the many athletic feats often
forever be remembered for other reasons as well.  When the
Syracuse Orangemen won the award in 1961, he became the
first African-American to win the award.

Following his Heisman season that also included a national
championship for undefeated Syracuse, Ernie Davis was
selected with the first pick of the 1962 NFL Draft.  Davis signed a
record contract with the Cleveland Browns and was set to join
former Orangemen Jim Brown in the Cleveland backfield.  

Tragically, Ernie Davis didn’t have the opportunity to celebrate his
crowning achievement for very long.  Before he ever took an NFL
snap, Davis was diagnosed with Leukemia and never played
football again.  Although he is reported to have fought a
courageous battle against the disease, Davis died in 1963.  In
honor of Davis, the Cleveland Browns retired the #45 jersey, the
number that Davis ws to have worn for the
Browns                                                          

Ernie Davis wore the famed #44 jersey for Syracuse, a number
also made famous by other Orangemen such as Jim Brown and
Larry Czonka.    Davis broke many of Jim Brown’s school rushing
records and burst onto the Heisman scene with his stellar 1961
performance.  That season saw Davis rush for 823 yards, score
15 touchdowns and lead Syracuse in receiving.  Davis edged out
Ohio State’s Bob Ferguson for the award.

Ernie Davis’ life story is chronicled in a novel called Ernie Davis:
The Elmira Express.  The book written by Robert C. Gallagher,
gives great detail about the courageous athlete from Elmira, NY.
Gallagher’s book illustrates the great affection for Ernie Davis as
more than 10,000 mourners filed by his coffin as it lay in state in
Elmira, NY.

The author also writes about a heartfelt telegram that President
Kennedy sent to Ernie Davis’ mother.  The letter of sympathy
spoke of how impressed the President was with Davis when he
had met him shortly after his Heisman season.  President
Kennedy noted what a tremendous inspiration Ernie Davis was
to people throughout the country.

To further celebrate the life of Ernie Davis, a movie is being
scheduled for production.  The movie will be called The Express
and will feature Dennis Quaid as Davis’ collegiate coach.  An
announcement on who will play Ernie Davis in the movie has not
been made at this time.        
.
Ernie Davis - 1961 Heisman Trophy WinnerErnie Davis: 1961 Heisman Winner
The Life of Ernie Davis is Featured in the movie "The Express."
The Express Synopsis
The movie features the true story of Ernie Davis who was the first black American
football player to win the Heisman Trophy. The running back was drafted into the NFL,
but his career was cut short when he was diagnosed with leukemia.
Actor Rob Brown will star as Ernie Davis  in the movie titled The Express.  Rob Brown was born in
Harlem and raised in Brooklyn, New York. A natural who never studied acting and who had no
professional acting experience, made his acting and motion picture debut in Finding Forrester (2000).
Brown shot into the spotlight after starring opposite Sean Connery in the 2000 film.  He had no acting
experience prior to taking this role, neither professional nor amateur. In search of extra money to pay
off a $300 cell-phone bill, Brown tried out as an extra after receiving a flyer in the mail. Several
callbacks later he won the lead role of Jamal Wallace.
Playing the Key Roles in "The Express"
Actor Rob
Brown plays the
role of Ernie
Davis
Rob Brown (as Ernie Davis) with
Dennis Quaid who plays the role as
Syracuse head coach Ben
Schwartzwalder
Playing the role of Ernie Davis,
Rob Brown is off to the races as
the Syracuse Heisman Winner in
the movie, "The Express."
The movie featuring the former
Syracuse Orangemen star was
released in October 2008.
Ernie Davis - 1961 Heisman Trophy WinnerErnie Davis 1961 Heisman Trophy Winner
Ernie Davis enjoys
picture day as a
Syracuse Orangemen
Starring Roles in The Express:
The Ernie Davis Story
Ernie Davis
Actor Rob Brown will star as Ernie Davis  in the upcoming movie titled The
Express.  Rob Brown was born in Harlem and raised in Brooklyn, New
York. A natural who never studied acting and who had no professional
acting experience, made his acting and motion picture debut in Finding
Forrester (2000).
Brown shot into the spotlight after starring opposite Sean Connery in the
2000 film.  He had no acting experience prior to taking this role, neither
professional nor amateur. In search of extra money to pay off a $300
cell-phone bill, Brown tried out as an extra after receiving a flyer in the mail.
Several callbacks later he won the lead role of Jamal Wallace.
Davis' College Coach
Well known actor Dennis Quaid is featured as former Syracuse coaching
legend Ben Schwartzwalder.  He was the head football coach at Syracuse
University who watched Davis come in and restore the Orangemen as a
national power.
Davis' Mother
Playing Marie Fleming will be Aunjanue Ellis.  The 38-year-old Ellis, a
native of San Francisco, has appeared in more than 30 movies and TV
series. She was in eight episodes of "Justice," and her movie credits
include the 2004 film "Ray," starring Jamie Foxx, and 2006's
"Freedomland," starring Samuel L. Jackson.
Davis' Grandfather
Veteran actor Charles S. Dutton has been cast as Willie Davis, Fleming's
father.  Dutton, 56, is a native of Baltimore who has 74 credits as an actor
in movies, TV and the theater, plus four as director and two as producer.
Dutton is an ex-convict who served 7 1/2 years in prison for fatally stabbing
a man in a street fight; he came to love the theater while behind bars.
He has twice been nominated for Broadway's Tony Award as best actor --
in "Ma Rainey's Black Bottom" in 1985 and "The Piano Lesson" in 1990.  
Dutton appears in two movies scheduled for release this year:
"Honeydripper," starring Danny Glover, and "The Third Nail," starring Trey
Deonte.
Playing the role of Jim Brown
Darrin Dewitt Henson, a choreographer, dancer and actor, was cast as
Brown. He has acted in productions such as the Showtime series "Soul
Food," the ABC-TV movie "Double Platinum" and the film "Stomp the Yard."
Brown preceded Ernie Davis at Syracuse and was slated to play in the
same NFL backfield with Davis in Cleveland.  Brown retired as the NFL's
all time leading rusher.
Playing the role of Floyd Little
Chadwick Boseman plays Floyd Little. He has appeared in the TV series
"CSI: New York," "Third Watch" and "Law & Order," and he played the male
lead in the 2006 short drama "LadyLike."  Little was another great running
back that came out of the Syracuse program.
Playing his college roommate
Omar Miller (Eight Mile & Get Rich or Die Trying) fills this role for the movie
that takes place in the late 1950s.  In the movie, Miller helps Ernie Davis
overcome racism that he faced.
Miller is quoted in an article on WETMTV.com about how the whole country
will soon know the Ernie Davis story.
"People in Syracuse and Elmira know he's a legend, but to the rest of the
county you kind of sleep on him," said Miller.  "They'll wake up when the
movie comes out."
The Express
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Schutt Syracuse Orange Mini
Authentic Throwback Helmet
The same style that Ernie
Davis wore
Ernie Davis Movie
The Express
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