Marsai Martin and Omari Hardwick play to win in ‘Fantasy Football’



The new movie “Fantasy Football” capitalizes on the natural talent of some of its stars.

Marsai Martin channels a lot of girl-boss energy in the role of Kelly Coleman, a tech-savvy young woman whose father’s long career in the NFL has landed him with the Atlanta Falcons team.

His production company is behind the family-friendly film. (Martin, 18, set a Guinness World Record in 2020 as the youngest Hollywood executive producer to work on a major production.)

He and costars Omari Hardwick (Bobby Coleman), Rome Flynn (Anderson Fisher), along with the film’s director Anton Cropper, recently spoke to CNN when they appeared at a Falcons game held at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta, Georgia.

It was a familiar environment as the group had shot many scenes for their film there.

The plot centers around Kelly’s father, played by Hardwick, seemingly at the end of his career when his daughter discovers that she can control her moves by playing the Madden Football video game.

Martin sees the role in which his character also befriends members of the robotics club team at his new school as not having fun with its positive message about diversity in technology.

“I’ve met a lot of girls who are into technology and STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) or all black girls are into coding,” she said. “It’s important to shine a light on it because it’s such a big deal. It’s all about representation.”

For Hardwick, the project gave him a chance to lean into his football roots.

Before becoming famous for roles like James “Ghost” St. Patrick on “Power,” the Georgia native played defensive back at the University of Georgia and later had a tryout with the San Diego Chargers as an undrafted free agent. agent

“It feels incredible to be back home here,” Hardwick said. “It’s obviously my hometown team… but I never got to play for the Falcons. I have to do my own thing with this film.”

Hardwick also pointed out that it was fitting that they were attending a game in which the Atlanta Falcons were playing the Chicago Bears because Rom Flynn, who plays Bobby Coleman’s rival, hot shot young quarterback Anderson Fisher, was playing Chicago Bears. grew up in

Flynn told CNN that unlike their characters, there was no competition between him and Hardwick as leading men.

“It’s all love,” he said, smiling. “We respect each other and we bring out the best in each other.”

“Fantasy Football” debuts Friday on Paramount+.

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