Movie featuring Will Rogers character to film in NE Oklahoma, public meeting scheduled

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By John Dobberstein, Editor

Producers for a new movie featuring a Will Rogers character will be joined by acclaimed author Jim Stovall and screenwriter Aaron Fulkerson with an update on the movie Dec. 3.

A public meeting will be held Dec. 3 at 10 a.m. at the Will Rogers Memorial Museums in Claremore. This event is free, and open to the public.

The movie, now in development, is based on Stovall’s book with the same title. Will to Win is a female-centric, family friendly sports movie about Will Rogers High School student Sky Forest, who is devastated when softball is cut at Will Rogers High -- threatening the promise she made to her Cherokee parents before they died to win a championship and secure a college scholarship.

In the movie, the school board president tries to sabotage her last option -- pitching for the boy’s baseball team. Through her vivid imagination Sky enlists the help of Will Rogers, whose wisdom and humor helps her to discover the Will to Win.

The movie is designed, in part, to re-introduce Will Rogers to current and future generations of people around the world. Filming is scheduled to begin in 2023.

Planned locations for the movie include the historic Will Rogers High School in Tulsa, and other locations in northeast Oklahoma -- including in Claremore at the Will Rogers Memorial Museums, Will’s birthplace in Oologah and along the Route 66/Will Rogers Highway corridor.

Executives for the project, Russ Kirkpatrick and Andy Kinslow are producing from Tulsa, while Mark Heidelberger is producing from Hollywood, during development.

The movie is the first ever to be endorsed by Will Rogers family representative Jennifer Rogers-Etcheverry. It’s also endorsed by the Will Rogers Memorial Museums and the Oklahoma Historical Society.

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