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Notes from a Darkened Theater: The NFL Embraces Pelham 1 2 3, Anvil Gets Thunderstruck

Despite the movie’s early mixed reviews, the NFL is rolling out the red carpet for Denzel Washington’s latest thriller, The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3.

Here in the Bay Area, San Francisco 49ers stars Alex Smith and All-Pro linebacker Patrick Willis will be joined by Nnamdi Asomugha, Darrius Hayward-Bey and Michael Huff of the Oakland Raiders to host a special Wednesday night screening of the film at the Great Mall in Milpitas. The players will arrive to walk the carpet at 6:30 p.m., with the movie, a remake of Joseph Sargent’s 1974 subway heist, to follow.

Although the screening is closed to the public, curious onlookers arriving early enough should catch a glimpse of their gridiron heroes and possibly more.

Directed by Tony Scott (True Romance), Pelham 1 2 3 pits Washington’s besieged subway dispatcher against a daring hijacker played by John Travolta. And if you’re curious what that has to do with professional football, well, join the club.

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