Indians’ football movie to show three Saturdays at Constantine

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”Playground of the Native Son,” a docu-drama about the 1920s Hominy Indians football team, will be shown each of the next three Saturday afternoons at the Constantine Theatre. Movie promo poster

Announcement that a Bartlesville movie festival would be screening the recently-completed film about the Hominy Indians football team provided a cause to celebrate for many Osage Countians who had been anxiously awaiting an opportunity to see the historical docu-drama.

Now, there’s even better news.

The independent film, entitled “Playground of the Native Son,” will be also be presented Saturday afternoon at Pawhuska’s Constantine Theatre. Repeat performances have been scheduled on the next two Saturdays, June 21 and 28, with a 3 p.m. start set for each.

Tickets (at $8 for adults/$5 for children) are to be available at the Constantine Theatre box office on the day of all three “Playground” screenings. On June 21, there also will be a 7 p.m. showing of “August: Osage County,” the R-rated 2013 production — much of which was filmed in and around Pawhuska and Bartlesville.

Following this week’s debut showing, the historic local theater will be hosting a reception and Celia Xavier, the California-based executive producer of the film, is expected to attend. The movie project was initiated in late 2012 and a considerable amount of its filming took place in the area, using actors from Oklahoma and nearby.

Xavier — whose company is Fully Funded Films/Indie N Productions — also has been working with actor Adam Beach to promote a feature film based on the Hominy Indians’ story.

“Playground” tells of the glorious decade-long achievements of the Hominy Indians, a semi-professional 1920’s football team composed of all-Native American players. In addition to compiling win streaks of 20 and 28 games, the Indians were known to have defeated several professional opponents.

In a legendary contest played in Pawhuska on Dec. 26, 1927, the Hominy squad defeated the New York Giants, the reigning champions of the pro league that would become the NFL. That signature victory provides one of the focal points of the movie.

Although the building had once been a hotel, the Constantine Theatre was going strong when that storied game was played The Constantine is (and was) located 110 W. Main.

“Playground of the Native Son” also is scheduled for a special Saturday screening in downtown Bartlesville. It will be shown at around 2 p.m. inside the Theater Bartlesville building, 312 S. Dewey as part of the Native Film Festival. An all-access pass for the festival costs $20, or there is a $10 charge per film, organizers said.

Bartlesville’s movie-appreciation series is being sponsored by Oklahoma Indian Summer 2014 in conjunction with the OK Mozart Festival, which kicked off there last weekend. “The Dead Can’t Dance” will be the first film shown after the festival begins at 11 a.m. and “Playground” is scheduled for the 2 p.m. slot. The films are expected to conclude around 8 p.m.

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