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Ebbets Brings Historic Feel to ’42′

sports mediaLast Friday, the film ’42’ was released in theatres in anticipation of Jackie Robinson Day, which the baseball world celebrated on Monday.

The film is based on the life story of Jackie Robinson and his history-making signing with the Brooklyn Dodgers under the guidance of team executive Branch Rickey.

The film has already received rave reviews and one of the highlights from the film is the authenticity of the uniforms worn by the actors.

From the uniforms of the Dodgers to those of the Montreal Royals, the garments and their authentic nature are unbelievably done.

The uniforms for the film were produced by Jerry Cohen and his staff at Ebbets.

Cohen – who grew up the son of a Brooklyn Dodgers fan – and Lisa Cooper founded Ebbets in 1988.  The company prides itself on remaining as authentic as it can when it comes to the uniforms they produce and they tried to achieve as authentic a feel as they could for the picture.

“Jackie Robinson brings everything together; Brooklyn origins, Negro leagues and Montreal in the minor leagues.  People seem to forget that Robinson broke the minor league colour barrier as well,” said Cohen when asked why he was so happy to work on this film.

“Working on the film was exhilarating and nerve wracking.”

Cohen explained that the toughest challenge of working on the film was staying as close to historically accurate as possible while still maintaining the look and feel the costume designer was trying to achieve, while still meeting the tight deadlines that were laid out for him and his company.

“We initially cut all jerseys in standard sleeve length, but the sleeves had to be redone, all Montreal jerseys had to be re-cut and made perfect to achieve what was needed for the film. We really had to go the extra mile,” said Cohen.

“We were thrown a lot of curveballs during production process. The costume designer was very specific and not always historic. There was some give and take to get her what she wanted for effect and remain historically accurate as well.”

Ebbets has been focussing on minor league historic uniforms for 25 years and it was a meeting in London, England that earned Cohen this unique gig.

“The production company knew about us and called last February. Their costume designer was in London when I just so happened to be. We met in London with research and fabric swatches in hand and we got the job. It was good fortune,” said Cohen.

“It was really exciting. It was great to see my work on screen. I was very proud of it.”

‘42’ is currently in theatres, so go check it out if you get a chance. Check out the trailer for the film below:

 Photo Courtesy of: dawn.com

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