Run! Don’t Walk, to go See McFarland, USA! #McFarlandUSA

Run! Don’t Walk, to go See McFarland, USA!

By Erin

Disney’s newest film McFarland, USA has hit the ground running today. Mcfarland, USA is the true story of how a cross country coach Jim White (Kevin Costner) rounded up a very unlikely group of Latino teens with uncertain futures and made them into true champions. McFarland is in California and is a predominantly Hispanic farming town where residents worked in the fields as “pickers.” With the odds stacked against them, this high school cross country team has a heart of gold and the determination of a tiger, they would not give up. With obstacles such as a non-existent budget, widespread prejudice, and the boys families needing them to help out in the fields everyday, White was able to show that “champions can come from anywhere.” The team became state champions in 1987. This film is truly an enjoyable one filled with many inspirational and motivating messages. You can do anything your heart desires, if you are willing to put in the time, dedication, and heart to make it happen.


The scenic and awe inspiring beauty of California is highlighted by Director Niki Caro, creatively making use of the cross country courses, from the urban landscape of McFarland, including the state prison right next door, to the surreal surroundings of the cross country meets that winded through hills, lush trees and other greenery.   The production took the cast and crew to some of the most beautiful spots in Southern and Central California, from Lake Castaic to Malibu to the Griffith Park Observatory, in addition to the fields and neighborhoods of Bakersfield and McFarland.


Here are a few more interesting facts to note about McFarland, USA as you run out to go see this inspiring film.

  • Coach Jim White is retired now, but if you go to McFarland, chances are you will see him out there on his bike, keeping up with the kids every evening with a lot of his original team running alongside as well. White retired in 2002 after teaching in McFarland schools for 40 years and coaching for 25 years.
  • Many of the original runners on the championship 1987 cross-country team have returned to or have stayed in their hometown to give back to the town that gave so much to them. A lot of these boys have become educators in the McFarland school district. The former teammates are not only working in their hometown, but also raising their families there and actively supporting the cross-country teams of today by coaching, helping out with the meets and practices and donating goods or money so the teams have what they need.

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Dreams Do Come True in McFarland, USA!

Dreams Do Come True in McFarland, USA!

By Erin

It’s not very often a movie comes out that is as inspiring, touching, real, filled with as much heart and is as heartwarming as this one is. Be prepared to go on a very real and heartfelt adventure with this special group of boys in the most inspiring sports drama about a Mexican-American cross-country team from rural California.

Based on a true story, Kevin Costner stars as the team’s coach, Coach White, who’s determination to guide a bunch of farm workers’ kids into a team full of champions with big dreams and goals is evident from the start. Coach White isn’t perfect by any means but his heart is in the right place and he is passionately devoted to his runners. A couple of weeks ago I had the great privilege to attend a press junket with some of the film’s creators and actors to gain a little bit more insight into the film, its history, background and setting dreams and goals.


First off, there is a LOT of running in this movie. So, what kind of training did they have to go through to become cross country runners for the film? Carlos Pratts gave us a great description of what that was like.

Carlos Pratts:  I would say in the mornings, we went to Santa Clarita and I would run five or six miles with these guys, and I cried more than I cried when I saw Bambi. Then we would go to the studio and rehearse the film, and then after that I would make the fun drive in the Hyundai Elantra, which I’m very thankful for because my car was in a bad place; thank you, Disney and I would make the fun drive to Redondo Beach. In Redondo Beach, I would then go through a lot of pain from the great people at Brick Fitness – thank you, Brian Gwen –he would help with the strength, and then the nutrition and all that. So for about three months, I couldn’t have a carb and I didn’t wear a shirt in my apartment. So… I’m kidding about that part.

World Premiere Of "McFarland, USA" At The El Capitan Theatre The World Premier of McFarland, USA

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2015 Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures Slate!

2015 Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures Slate!!!

By Erin

2015 Disney Movies

It’s a new year! Which means; new movies, new adventures, new loves, and many new memories to be made. Let’s take a peek into what Disney has in store for us in 2015! I hope to be able to bring you more special insider information and to meet some of the cast and directors from this years amazing line up. What movies are you most excited for this year?

January 23, 2015 – Strange Magic (Touchstone Pictures / Lucasfilm)

Strange Magic

“Strange Magic,” a new animated film from Lucasfilm Ltd., is a madcap fairy tale musical inspired by “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.” Popular songs from the past six decades help tell the tale of a colorful cast of goblins, elves, fairies and imps, and their hilarious misadventures sparked by the battle over a powerful potion. I have always loved seeing live productions of ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ as a kid and I am very curious to see how this was weaved into the storyline.

February 20, 2015 – McFarland, USA (Walt Disney Studios)


MacFarland, USA is based on a true story from 1987. Disney’s “McFarland, USA” follows novice runners from McFarland, an economically challenged town in California’s farm-rich Central Valley, as they give their all to build a cross- country team under the direction of Coach Jim White (Kevin Costner), a newcomer to their predominantly Latino high school.

March 13, 2015 – Cinderella (Walt Disney Studios)


Cinderella is one of my favorite Disney Princesses and the one I can most relate to, I am very much looking forward to seeing this movie! Coming to the big screen as a live-action feature inspired by the classic fairy tale, bringing to life the timeless images from the studio’s 1950 animated masterpiece as fully-realized characters in a visually-dazzling spectacle for a whole new generation to cherish and enjoy.

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