A Bob Costas Q-and-A with Harrison Ford, Chadwick Boseman and former Dodger great and Jackie Robinson teammate Don Newcombe has been fashioned into an MLB Network special on the movie “42” that airs Saturday (1 p.m.) and Sunday (7 p.m.).
The hour-long chat was done at Dodger Stadium last Friday as part of the media tour staged by film producer Warner Bros.
Costas gets Ford to admit that one of the visual impressions given to him as he prepared to play Dodgers general manager Branch Rickey was a kinescope episode of “What’s My Line?” that Rickey appeared in from 1959.
“Just after the show was over, he walked from the place where he sat as a mystery guest and greeted the panelists on his way off stage,” said Ford. “And from that I got the essence of the man, the courtliness, the gentility, the way he moved. You know, a picture’s worth a thousand words and a lot of those pictures helped inform me.”
Most interestingly in that clip above: One of the panelists is Chuck Connors, the actor who was a former Dodgers first baseman who later says on the show Rickey “gave me my career in baseball.”
Says Newcombe on how Boseman played Jackie Robinson and Ford played Rickey in the film: “I’m so proud to see this young man perform the way he did, emulating my great idol named Jackie Robinson, my teammate, my ex-roommate, my golfing buddy … When I first saw Harrison, I said, ‘What is Branch Rickey doing up on that screen?’ He looks so much like him and he performed like him and I said, ‘My God, what do they do in the movie business, they make it almost real.’ I’m proud of the both of them.”