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(Many Paths)
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Eight Cherokees to be in Hominy Indians Documentary
by JAMI CUSTER - Cherokee Phoenix reporter
credits: photos by Jamu Custer - Cherokee Phoenix

TULSA, Okla. – Eight Cherokee Nation citizens will portray members of the Hominy Indians football team from the 1920s in the documentary “Playground of the Native Son,” which was expected to begin filming in December.

All actors portraying football players held their first meeting and practice on Dec. 2 at Veteran’s Park.

The movie is based on the story of the 1925 Hominy Indians professional football team and is a project of independent film producer Celia Xavier and Fully Funded Films.

Overall, 13 Native Americans men got fitted for uniforms and met Xavier and coach Wade Weller (Caddo), who will teach the plays that will be used in the film.

“We wanted to put the players in the positions and teach them the offense and defense plays that they ran back in that day and do a team fitting for the uniforms and get team pictures,” Weller said.

Of the 13 players on the Hominy Indians football team, eight are Cherokee.

CN citizen Kiah Smith, who will portray one of the players, said he wrote a paper on Haskell football in the 1920s, which included the Hominy Indians story.

“Anything positive that we can show our young Native kids how working together can make us successful is always good,” he said.

CN citizen Johnny Murphy said he was interested in the movie because other than it featuring an “awesome story about Native Americans” he was excited about playing football again.

“I’m ready to get on the field again. I know we will not actually be playing, but it’ll be pretty cool to suit up and what a great experience this will be,” he said.

The team was expected to have dress rehearsal of the plays in mid-December with filming beginning later in the month. However, Xavier said they are still casting for the film.

“We need a coach who will give the halftime speech in the movie,” Xavier said. “We also have a couple speaking parts that we need to cast and production assistants.”

People interested in the movie for a part, whether speaking or as extras, need to visit the Facebook page at film’s Facebook page Hominy Indians Movie or

According to a press release, the documentary has received an arts grant from the Osage Nation Foundation. However, donations can be made through the Osage Nation Foundation for the filming of the documentary, the release states.

The Osage Nation Foundation, which has contributed some to the film, will be taking donations on Fully Funded Film’s behalf. To donate by mail, make checks payable to Osage Nation Foundation and care of Playground to P.O. Box 92777, Southlake, TX 76092. To donate to the documentary by phone, call (405) 415-0383 and use a credit card.

The Osage Nation Foundation is a nonprofit organization that promotes the development of the Osage reservation and the communities influenced by the Osage Nation. Anyone with information or memorabilia about the team can contact Xavier at the film’s Facebook page.

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Hominy Heritage Association
The Hominy Heritage Association is an organization dedicated to the acquisition and preservation of historical facts and memorabilia relating to Hominy, Oklahoma, and the surrounding area.

For nearly a decade beginning in the early 1920s Hominy would be home to a professional football team.

Deemed the Hominy Indians, they would go on to defeat the New York Giants in 1927, who just prior to the event, had been named champions of the National Football League.

Other notable achievements of the ‘all Indian’ (though not all from the same tribe) team included a 28 game winning streak.

The team disbanded after the conclusion of the 1932 season, due to the Great Depression.

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