On Sunday afternoon, friends, family, and fans of the De La Salle high school football team gathered at Blackhawk theatre in Danville for a red carpet premier of "When the Game Stands Tall." The film, an adaptation of the 2003 book by Contra Costa Times columnist Neil Hayes, depicts the 151-game winning streak of the De La Salle high school football team which ran for 11 years, from 1992 to 2003. The evening served as an opportunity to celebrate the legend of the De La Salle football team and as a means to honor the memory of Richmond native Terrance Kelly, one of the team's star players.
The heart of the film surrounds the players, focusing in particular on Kelly who was tragically killed two days before he was to attend University of Oregon on a scholarship. Kelly's death spurred the formation of the Terrance Kelly Youth Foundation (TKYF), which offers programs to promote a focus on education, athletics, and nonviolence. Sunday's event served as a benefit for the foundation.
Three showings of "When the Game Stands Tall" were staggered over the course of an hour to assure that everyone in attendance had a chance to enjoy the film. The Kelly family had a chance to see the movie before Sunday's premier, an experience described as very emotional in an article for the Contra Costa Times. "We cried the first half of the movie. ... There are a lot of parts in that first half that have to do with Terrance," Landrin Kelly, Terrance's father, told the publication. "Just to see him on the big screen and how well they portrayed him, and then what really inspired me, they put the funeral in there. I think they did a really good job with that, too." A "5th Quarter" reception was held after the movie to reflect upon the movie and the history rendered.
Photo credit: Sony Pictures
Watch the trailer for the movie here.