The League, Get Ready For Sam Pollard’s All-American Blackbuster Movie This Summer

July 3, 2023

By Marc Peoples

Happy Summertime Harlem. It’s the time of year to enjoy your time off from school, hang out outdoors with friends and family, and check out those summer blockbusters at theaters.

Speaking of the movies there’re a lot of highly anticipated films being released in the coming weeks, including Oppenheimer, and of course Mission Impossible: Dead Reckoning Part One.

Still, there’s one that’s flying under the radar that deserves recognition and that’s The League, a documentary film by Harlem native, Oscar Nominee, and Emmy Award winner, Sam Pollard. 

Sam Pollard produced Spike Lee’s acclaimed 1997 historical documentary, 4 Little Girls. Which follows the story of four African-American girls who lost their lives in the 16th Street Baptist Church bombing in Birmingham, Alabama on September 15, 1963. It was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Documentary. In 2010, he won an Emmy for Outstanding Picture Editing for Nonfiction Programming for the film By The People: The Election of Barack Obama.

The League is executive produced by Oscar-winner, Questlove and gives us an inside look into the challenges and accomplishments of the Negro League of Baseball. Admittingly most of us millennials and Gen-Zs have very little knowledge of the Negro Leagues. Honestly, some may not even know what that is.

This film is a history lesson for those of you who want to learn more about American history this summer. Some of the names mentioned should sound familiar like the great Jackie Robinson, Buck Leonard, the legendary Satchel Paige, of course, Willie Mays, Cool Papa Bell, Hank Aaron, Oscar Charleston, Josh Gibson, and the first woman to be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame, the trailblazing Effa Manley. If you’re not familiar with the names or their faces the film will show you through archival footage and interviews.

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Summer is the time when movie theaters are overrun by superheroes and other blockbusters, but if you want to see one that feels meaningful.

The film will be released on July 7th exclusively in AMC Theaters. Take a trip to the AMC Theater 2309 Frederick Douglass Blvd, on 124th Street, and check it out. Learn how the Negro League made a huge impact not only on African Americans alone but worldwide.

Marc Peoples is a writer, film, and game enthusiast with a full range of electronic or digital games experience, who lives on the west coast in Los Angeles, CA.

He graduated with honors from the Los Angeles Film School (LAFS), where he studied film and screenwriting.

Photo credit: 1) Sam Pollard. 2) Source.

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