Former Don Prudhomme driver Ron Capps and reigning NHRA Mello Yello Funny Car champ Jack Beckman will be on hand Saturday, Oct. 26, when the feature film Snake & Mongoose begins a two-week engagement at the Century Orleans Theater at the Orleans Casino in Las Vegas during this weekend’s NHRA Toyota Nationals.
Snake & Mongoose tells the tale of the extraordinary rivalry and friendship of legendary drag racers Don “the Snake” Prudhomme and Tom “the Mongoose” McEwen, two of the sport’s biggest stars. The film stars Jesse Williams (Grey’s Anatomy) as Prudhomme and Richard Blake (Dragonball: Evolution) as McEwen.
“We wanted the film to play in conjunction with the penultimate NHRA event of the season at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway, which begins Thursday, Oct. 24,” said Robin Broidy, the film’s producer. “We also wanted it to still be in Las Vegas during the SEMA Show so that the car enthusiasts, both the exhibitors and the customers, can see it.”
The film also features Noah Wyle, Tim Blake Nelson, and Fred Dryer and contains cameos from Capps and fellow, current Funny Car star Alexis DeJoria as well as from the real-life Prudhomme and McEwen. Capps, who races for Don Schumacher Racing, plays famous crew chief Lou Baney in the film and will be attending the 7 p.m. showing. The Century Orleans 18 is the only theater playing the film in Las Vegas.
“I love the film,” said Capps “I’m glad I get to show it to some of my family members who live in Las Vegas, including my brother, Jon, who was a technical consultant for the film.”
Beckman, who also drives for Don Schumacher Racing, will be joining Capps at the screening. Beckman particularly relates to McEwen because in 2004 he endured a difficult struggle with leukemia, a disease that affected McEwen’s son, Jamie, in the late 1970s. Beckman, now in remission for eight years, is an advocate for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society as was McEwen.
“Tom McEwen is definitely one of my heroes. NHRA issues permanent competition numbers to competitors. Goose is 713, Snake 712, so I chose 711 to be right next to two of the biggest legends this sport has ever had,” said Beckman. “Like many kids who grew up in the ‘70s in Southern California, the hot rod scene was vibrant and highly influential. These two were iconic on and off the track, and the partnership with Hot Wheels made them household names and gave us children an attachment to the sport that helped nurture a passion that would one day carry many of us to the track.”
The film opens at the Century Orleans 18 theater at the Orleans Resort Friday, Oct. 25, and the first 400 to see the film will be able to get a copy of the film’s poster either in 11x17 or 8x11 size.
For more on Snake & Mongoose or to view the trailer, visit, http://www.snakeandmongoosemovie.com.