Thursday, May 26, 2022

Jesse Owens’ Daughters Didn’t Know He Was Famous Until Their Teens

Jesse Owens’ daughters, from left, Marlene Owens Rankin, Beverly Owens Prather and Gloria Owens Hemphill, stand in front of a statue of their father at the Jesse Owens Memorial Park in Oakville, Alabama, Thurs., Oct. 27, 2006, at a gathering to pay tribute to his legacy.
Jesse Owens’ daughters, from left, Marlene Owens Rankin, Beverly Owens Prather and Gloria Owens Hemphill, stand in front of a statue of their father at the Jesse Owens Memorial Park in Oakville, Alabama, Thurs., Oct. 27, 2006, at a gathering to pay tribute to his legacy.

*A long overdue biopic about pioneering track star Jesse Owens will arrive in theaters nationwide on Feb. 19.

Aptly titled “Race,” the film follows the African American athlete who overcame adversity to win a record-breaking four gold medals at the 1936 Berlin Olympic Games – while simultaneously destroying Adolf Hitler’s myth of Aryan supremacy.

Jesse Owens
Jesse Owens

The Owens family has given the film its full blessing, with two of Owens’ daughters – Marlene O. Rankin and Beverly Prather – currently promoting  its theatrical release next month.

“What we would like people to take from the movie is his strength and his attitude toward people, that everybody is the same,” Marlene said of her dad during a recent roundtable. “You work with what you have, you do the best with what you have.”

The Owens Daughters back in the day
The Owens Daughters back in the day

Below, Marlene explains why she and her siblings didn’t realize their dad was famous until they were teenagers.

In “Race,” Stephen James takes on the title role (which initially went to John Boyega, until he dropped out to join “Star Wars: The Force Awakens”). The film is directed by Stephen Hopkins and written by Joe Shrapnel and Anna Waterhouse. Jason Sudeikis, Jeremy Irons, William Hurt and Carice van Houten co-star.

Watch the trailer for “Race” below, ahead of its Feb. 19 release.

YOU MAY LIKE

SEARCH

THE CULTURECALENDAR: WHAT'S NEW & BLACK ON TV

- Advertisement -

TRENDING