Everyone's Hero is a 2006 computer animated comedy film, directed by Colin Brady, Christopher Reeve (who was working on this film at the time of his death), and Daniel St. Pierre, with music by John Debney. The majority of this film was produced by IDT Entertainment in Toronto with portions outsourced to Reel FX Creative Studios. It was distributed by 20th Century Fox, and released theatrically on September 15, 2006. Everyone's Hero had a moderate performance at the box office, earning only $16 million worldwide during its theatrical run, but the film was not released in several major countries. The film is also dedicated to the memory of director Christopher Reeve.
In 1932, the dawn of the Great Depression, young baseball fan Yankee Irving (Jake T. Austin), whose father Stanley (Mandy Patinkin) works as a janitor for New York City's Yankee Stadium, dreams of playing for the New York Yankees but can't even play sandlot baseball well enough to avoid being picked last. One day beside the sandlot, he finds and befriends a talking baseball he names Screwie (Rob Reiner). While father and son are in the stadium, a thief steals Babe Ruth's famous bat Darlin' (Whoopi Goldberg). Yankee's father, who was working his shift at the time, is blamed and accordingly fired. The true thief is Lefty Maginnis (William H. Macy), a pitcher for the Chicago Cubs. Lefty works for Cubs owner Napoleon Cross (Robin Williams), who desires to see the Cubs defeat the Yankees during the 1932 World Series. Stealing the bat back, Yankee decides to return it to Ruth—and thereby exonerate his father—by journeying across the country to Chicago, where the next World Series' games will be played. Darlin' is able to speak, as does her counterpart Screwie, with whom she constantly argues and bickers (though near the end, they finally become friends). Much of the plot is driven by Lefty's comic attempts to retrieve the bat from Yankee, with slapstick results. Other scenes involve Yankee meeting others who will help him in his quest: several hobos (Ed Helms, Richard Kind, and Ron Tippe); Marti (Raven-Symoné), an African American girl; her baseball player father Lonnie Brewster (Forest Whitaker); and in Chicago, Babe Ruth himself (Brian Dennehy). A series of improbable coincidences allows Yankee himself to bat for the Yankees, resulting in the archetypal home run (technically, a series of errors after an infield pop-up that allow him to round the bases). This restores the morale of the Yankees, who score 7 more runs to take the lead and win the World Series. Cross tries to talk Babe Ruth out of accepting the victory, saying that Yankee is too young to be eligible to play. This leads to the arrest of Cross, and also Lefty. Yankee also successfully exonerates his father. Yankee returns home, now knowing what is truly important in baseball.
- Jake T. Austin as Yankee Irving
- Rob Reiner as Screwie
- Whoopi Goldberg as Darlin
- Robin Williams as Napoleon Cross
- William H. Macy as Lefty Maginnis
- Brain Dennehy as Babe Ruth
- Forest Whitaker as Lonnie Brewster
- Raven-Symoné as Marti Brewster
- Mandy Patinkin as Stanley Irving
- Dana Reeve as Emily Irving
In its opening weekend, the film grossed $6.1 million in 2,896 theaters in the United States and Canada, ranking #3 at the box office, behind Gridiron Gang and The Black Dahlia. By the end of its run, Everyone's Hero grossed $14.5 million in the US and $2.1 million internationally, for an approximate total of $16.6 million worldwide.
At Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating out of 100 to reviews from mainstream critics, the film received an average score of 51% based on 20 reviews, which indicates "mixed" reviews. Another aggregator, Rotten Tomatoes, scored the film 41% based on 69 reviews. The website's critical consensus reads, "Everyone's Hero is such a predictable and bland tale that it'll appeal mostly to little kids; others seeking something in Pixar's league are looking in the wrong ballpark." Jack Matthews of the New York Daily News wrote, "Whoever wanders into the theater should leave a winner". L.A. Weekly called the themes "fairly pro forma" and cited the film's "antique Rockwellian look" as "its greatest pleasure". Gregory Kirschling of Entertainment Weekly rated it B− and wrote, "Everyone's Hero re-creates Depression-era America with surprisingly agreeable anachronistic panache", though he criticized the character designs.
In the United States, Cartoon Network aired Everyone's Hero on April 12, 2009. Cartoon Network later added the movie to its rotating lineup again on November 5, 2016, treating it as the network premiere of the movie. In Latin America, Cartoon Network Latino aired the film on November 23, 2011. In Asia, Disney Channel premiered May 29, 2012. It also aired on Disney XD in the United States on April 8, 2013, and March 7, 2014.
The soundtrack, released on the Columbia Records/Sony Music Soundtrax labels, features tracks by the star of the film Raven-Symoné, Grammy-winners Wyclef Jean, Brooks & Dunn, Mary Chapin Carpenter, and various other artists.
- The Best – John Ondrasik – 3:49
- Keep On Swinging – Brooks & Dunn – 4:12
- Dream Like New York – Tyrone Wells – 3:44
- Chicago (That Toddling Town) – Chris Botti featuring Lyle Lovett – 2:16
- The Best Day of My Life – John Randall featuring Jessi Alexander – 3:13
- Keep Your Eye on the Ball – Raven-Symoné – 2:27
- What You Do – Wyclef Jean featuring Kontrast – 3:12
- Swing It – Brooks & Dunn – 3:34
- Take Me Out to the Ballgame – Lonestar – 2:43
- The Bug – Mary Chapin Carpenter – 3:48
- The Tigers – John Debney featuring Paris Bennett – 1:46
- At Bat – John Debney – 3:44
- List of animated feature films
- List of computer-animated films
- Everyone's Hero. AFI Catalog of Feature Films. Retrieved on 2017-05-27.
- Everyone's Hero at Box Office Mojo
- Everyone's Hero Blu-ray. Blu-ray.com. Retrieved on March 22, 2015.
- Everyone's Hero (2006). Box Office Mojo. Retrieved on July 26, 2011.
- Everyone's Hero. Metacritic. Retrieved on March 22, 2015.
- Everyone's Hero. rottentomatoes.com (September 15, 2006). Retrieved on March 22, 2015.
- Matthews, Jack. "'HERO'A BIG-LEAGUE HIT", New York Daily News, 2006-09-15. Retrieved on 2017-05-27.
- "Film Reviews", L.A. Weekly, 2006-09-13. Retrieved on 2017-05-27.
- Kirschling, Gregory (2006-09-13). Everyone's Hero. Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved on 2017-05-27.
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