The Express (also known as The Express: The Ernie Davis Story) is a 2008 American sports film produced by John Davis and directed by Gary Fleder. The storyline was conceived from a screenplay written by Charles Leavitt from a book titled Ernie Davis: The Elmira Express, authored by Robert C. Gallagher. The film is based on the life of Syracuse University football player Ernie Davis, the first African American to win the Heisman Trophy, portrayed by actor Rob Brown. The Express explores civil topics, such as racism, discrimination and athletics. The motion picture was a co-production between the film studios of Relativity Media and Davis Entertainment. It was commercially distributed by Universal Pictures theatrically, and by Universal Studios Home Entertainment for home media. Following its cinematic release, it failed to garner any award nominations from mainstream motion picture organizations for its production merits or lead acting. In the film, veteran actors Dennis Quaid and Charles S. Dutton star in principal supporting roles. The original motion picture soundtrack with a musical score composed by Mark Isham, was released by the Lakeshore Records label on October 28, 2008. The Express premiered in theaters nationwide in the United States on October 10, 2008 grossing $9,793,406 in domestic ticket receipts. It earned an additional $14,718 in business through international release to top out at a combined $9,808,124 in gross revenue. Since the film had a $40 million budget, it was a financial failure. However, preceding its initial screening in cinemas, the film was generally met with positive critical reviews. The Blu-ray version of the film, featuring deleted scenes and the director's commentary was released on January 20, 2009.
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