It’s a mission to bring everyone home safely in the new movie, ‘Devotion.’
The film stars Jonathan Majors and Glen Powell, and tells the story of Jesse Brown, the Navy’s first Black fighter pilot who became best friends with fellow pilot Thomas Hudner Jr. while fighting in the Korean war. In real life, the two became heroes who demonstrated risk taking and true loyalty.
Hudner Jr. was born in Fall River, and lived in Concord for much of his life after the war. 7NEWS spoke with his son, Tom Hudner III, to talk about the film and what it meant for him to see this story come to life on screen.
“I truly think one of the most meaningful aspects of the film itself, for my father, would be that so many more people are going to know Jesse’s story,” he said. “And what he experienced as the first Black Naval aviator, I think is one of the most important parts of the film and the entire experience.”
Majors discussed his ability to relate to Brown and his struggles.
“He mirrors trials and tribulations that I’ve experienced in my life, and he has far exceeded expectations and has put himself, you know, from the mud into the sky,” Majors said of the former pilot. “This is my hero.”
Hudner III also said the two stars in the movie made sure the story was told right.
“Everyone was invested in the story and getting it right. And that started with Glenn, who really committed to the family and to my father that they would take this project on with integrity,” Hudner III said.
Powll said in order to get the former pilots blessing to make the film, he flew to Masschusetts to talk with Hudney Jr. before he passed away in 2017.
Fresh off his breakout role in Top Gun: Maverick, Powell knew a thing or two about the challenges of flying.
“In terms of flying, these planes are brutal,” Powell said. “We’re ripping and roaring on some very old aircraft.”
Majors was determined to get things right. As he said part of filming was “trying to keep my lunch down, stay in this thing and honor Jesse Brown.”
Hudners family enjoyed being involved with the movie, he said, and went so far as to incorporate real, personal items to help tell his dad’s story.
“During the medal of honor scene in the movie, they actually use my father’s real medal of honor. So the medal that President Harry Truman hung around father’s neck in April of 1951 is the same exact medal that is hung around Glen Powell’s neck.”
‘Devotion’ is out now, playing exclusively in theaters. Anyone interested in reading more about the movie, purchasing tickets, or watching the trailer can do so on the movie website.
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