A new documentary called "John Henry: a Steel Driving Racehorse" has been rolled out by Open Sky Entertainment, in cooperation with Launchpad Releasing.
The film, about the blue collar horse who defied his modest pedigree and became a multiple champion, made its theatrical debut at the Kentucky Horse Park May 2. It is now available for purchase on DVD at the film’s official website, www.johnhenrymovie.com as well as several other major online retailers and retail chains to be announced.
Open Sky producers Glenn Garland and Christopher Duddy describe their documentary as “a great American hero rag-to-riches story with great inspiration for all generations.” The film is directed by Cameron Duddy and Christian Koby, both noted music video directors. Rebecca Gebhard served as producer. Max Eisenberg (“A Call to Remember,” “Beverly Hills 90210,” Home Improvement”) is both a writer and producer.
On the track, John Henry was a two-time Horse of the Year and won 39 of 83 races and $6,591,860. Sixteen of those wins came in grade I races.
Bred in Kentucky by Golden Chance Farm, John Henry was foaled March 9 1975, and was a son of Ole Bob Bowers—Once Double, by Double Jay. For most of racing career, he was owned by Sam and Dorothy Rubin's Dotsam Stable and was trained by Ron McAnally.
In all, John Henry earned seven Eclipse Awards, two for Horse of the Year (1981 and 1984), four as turf male (1980, 1981, 1983, 1984) and one as top older male (1981). He was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1990.
John Henry died in 2007 at age 32 at the Kentucky Horse Park, where he had been stabled since his retirement in 1985.
The John Henry film chronicles the life and legacy of the great gelding and includes interviews with celebrities, dignitaries, and other notables that knew him (or won big money from his successes), as well as interviews with the jockeys who rode him, including Chris McCarron and Laffit Pincay Jr.
"We are very excited to share the story of this legendary racehorse and the life and times of this true American hero,” said Duddy in a release. “We hope this film will inspire all generations with its timeless, true, rags-to-riches American story. I think not only the racehorse fan, but all Americans who have a dream should see this inspirational film."