On Feb. 6, 1958, the team plane for Manchester United’s professional soccer team landed in Munich, Germany, to refuel. Onboard were players, managers, staff personnel and journalists, who were returning home from a European Cup match.
Once the plane was refueled, its first two takeoff attempts were aborted.
On the third attempt, the plane crashed.
In what Manchester United’s website calls “the darkest day in United’s history,” 23 of the 44 people onboard -- including eight players -- were killed.
Twenty-six years later, Sir Matt Busby, manager of Manchester United at the time of the crash and who was seriously injured as a result, came out of retirement to help a troubled 11-year-old boy fulfill his dream.
This story, inspired by actual events, is told in “Believe,” a movie being distributed in the United States by Excel Entertainment.
Starring Brian Cox -- known for his roles as Ward Abbott in the Bourne series and William Stryker in “X-Men 2” -- as Busby, “Believe” won best children’s film honors at both the Zurich Film Festival and the Buster International Children’s Film Festival.
“We think that the film’s uplifting and redemptive story makes it the perfect film for mothers, fathers and grandparents to watch with their children and grandchildren,” said Robin Grbich of Trinity Film, which handled the United Kingdom distribution of “Believe.”
“(The film) tells the story of how (Busby) is finally healed, while continuing to inspire generations of dreamers and leaving the world’s greatest football team as his legacy,” according to a press release from Deseret Book.
Although the story centers around Busby and the young football team, the film will appeal to more than just soccer fans.
Arthur VanWagenen, product director for film with Excel Entertainment, highlighted the mentor aspect of “Believe.”
“I hope (people will) come away appreciating the role that mentors play in helping us raise our children to be good human beings,” VanWagenen said.
“Believe” will be released Sep. 12 in 37 theaters, mostly in the western United States. To find a theater or to buy tickets, visit believesoccermovie.com.