In 1970, Pittsburgh Pirates pitcher Dock Ellis threw a no-hitter during a game against the San Diego Padres. The rare feat, one of only 276 recorded in baseball history, signaled a high point in his career, one that became even more legendary when he said that he accomplished it while on LSD. Though many sports fans remember him for this outrageous claim, Ellis is better noted as a rebel who challenged authority in a time when professional black athletes still experienced unfair scrutiny and persecution. On August 26th, Melwood Screening Room will honor the late Bucco’s legacy with a sneak peek of the film No No: A Dockumentary.
Directed by Jeffrey Radice, No No chronicles the life of one of baseball’s most controversial figures. During his 12 years in the major leagues, Ellis lived the expression “Black is Beautiful!” He wore curlers on the field. He stepped out of his Cadillac wearing the widest bell bottoms and the broadest collars. When he put on his uniform, the “Muhammad Ali of Baseball” was one of the most intimidating pitchers of the 1970s. He was an outspoken leader of a new wave of civil rights in sports, when black athletes were no longer content to accept second-class treatment or keep their mouths shut about indignities. For this, the press labeled him a militant. After Dock retired from baseball, he was as open about his addictions to alcohol and amphetamines as he had been about racial prejudice during his career. He spent his last decades using that blunt honesty as a counselor helping other addicts, until his death from liver disease in 2008. This will be the first time his legend – and the story of the man behind it – will be told in a feature film.
No No screens at 7:30 p.m. Radice will be on hand to answer any questions about the film. Tickets are $10 and are available for purchase at Showclix.