’12 Mighty Orphans’ Trailer: Feel-Good Football Drama Has Luke Wilson Teaching Kids To Win On And Off The Field

Sometimes, all you need is an uplifting feel-good sports movie. 12 Mighty Orphans is a film you might not have heard of before now, but it looks to deliver on the well-worn, proven formula, and with a cast that includes Luke Wilson, Robert Duvall, Vinessa Shaw, and Martin Sheen.

When we say this thing has all of the comforts of the underdog sports drama, just check out the story. Wilson plays a superstar coach who gives it up to coach a bunch of misfit kids on a Fort Worth football team, turning them into winners both on the field at the game of life. Did I mention this was based on a true story? What’s not to like?

The film is directed by Ty Roberts (The Iron Orchard) who also co-wrote the script. Others in the cast include Wayne Knight (“Newman!!!”), Jake Austin Walker, Treat Williams, and Ron White.

12 Mighty Orphans opens in select theaters on June 11th.

12 MIGHTY ORPHANS tells the true story of the Mighty Mites, the football team of a Fort Worth orphanage who, during the Great Depression, went from playing without shoes—or even a football—to playing for the Texas state championships. Over the course of their winning season these underdogs and their resilient spirit became an inspiration to their city, state, and an entire nation in need of a rebound, even catching the attention of President Franklin D. Roosevelt. The architect of their success was Rusty Russell, a legendary high school coach who shocked his colleagues by giving up a privileged position so he could teach and coach at an orphanage. Few knew Rusty’s secret: that he himself was an orphan. Recognizing that his scrawny players couldn’t beat the other teams with brawn, Rusty developed innovative strategies that would come to define modern football.


Travis Hopson has been reviewing movies before he even knew there was such a thing. Having grown up on a combination of bad '80s movies, pro wrestling, comic books, and hip-hop, Travis is uniquely positioned to geek out on just about everything under the sun. A vampire who walks during the day and refuses to sleep, Travis is the co-creator and lead writer for Punch Drunk Critics. He is also a contributor to Good Morning Washington, WBAL Morning News, and WETA Around Town. In the five minutes a day he's not working, Travis is also a voice actor, podcaster, and Twitch gamer. Travis is a voting member of the Critics Choice Association (CCA), Washington DC Area Film Critics Association (WAFCA), and Late Night programmer for the Lakefront Film Festival.