Emilio Estevez: Catch-Driver
Published: November 16, 2012 1:26 pm ET
Last Comment: November 21, 2012 2:29 pm ET | 6 Comment(s) | Jump to Comments
“Look, I can’t really fake it. I mean if I’m faking it out there people are gonna know. I’ve really got to be doing it, so my goal now is to get my racing license and start driving as much as I can.”
If you're watching harness racing at Ohio racetracks in 2013, you might just see the name of a Hollywood star listed on a horse, and it won't be a misprint. According to the Dayton Daily News, Emilio Estevez will be getting his driver's license in conjunction with his upcoming movie "Johnny Longshot". Estevez had come into Ohio to scout locations for shooting as much of the movie will be shot in the Buckeye State. Racing footage will reportedly be shot at Ohio's tracks as well, with Lebanon Raceway, Scioto Downs or Northfield Park all being options as well as The Red Mile in Lexington, Ky.
“I took my first spin around a track at Lebanon last year and the other day we were over in Columbus at Scioto Downs and Virgil Morgan Jr. took me around the track,” Estevez said. “In a perfect world now I’m going to apply for my Ohio racing license and start driving.”
Estevez, who recently concluded the critically-acclaimed film "The Way", told The Daily News that "Johnny Longshot" will be a film for all ages.
“This will be sort of a Mom and Poppy movie. It’s not about gambling. It’s about the sport, the people. It’s a very family friendly film," noted Estevez. “When I thought about a movie, I knew there had been a lot with thoroughbred — “Seabiscuit,” “Secretariat” — but no one has ever really done one about harness racing. Standardbreds are kind of the unsung heroes of the horse world and they’re a beautiful breed."
The premise of "Johnny Longshot" surrounds a washed-up thoroughbred jockey who gets a second chance in horse racing as a harness driver.
“It’s the story of a retired thoroughbred jock who can’t make the weight anymore and is too old. No one really wants to see him on a thoroughbred anymore, so he reinvents himself," continued Estevez. “It’s really about second chances in life. That’s the theme of the whole movie — about finding some level of redemption. That’s what the character finds himself needing and desperately looking for. We all deserve a second chance.”
Estevez has been fond of horses since he was a kid.
“My dad took me to the races when I was young and I loved it,” he said. “I don’t think there’s anything more exciting than those two minutes on the track."
The actor-director notes "Johnny Longshot" will look to capture and showcase that excitement.
“Look at the chariot race in 'Ben Hur,' how exciting that is. Now with the new technology of film making, I think we’re going to be able to make these harness races really exciting.”