When the Baltimore Ravens take on the San Francisco 49ers in this weekend’s Big Game in New Orleans, a real Hollywood-and-Vine moment will emerge. Ravens right tackle Michael Oher was the subject of the 2009 blockbuster film, The Blind Side.
The award winning film captures the story of the Tuohy family, who adopted the trouble teen from a broken home. Sandra Bullock won an Academy Award for playing the matriarch of the family, who overcame a litany of issues to assure that Oher would succeed in life, including a lingering bigotry of African-Americans from her Memphis neighbors; to NCAA allegations that the Tuohy parents were illegally influencing the high school football sensation to attend the University of Mississippi, their alma-mater. Now, the Tuohy clan is joining the actress on Sunday at the Super Bowl XLVII to support their son.
The Baltimore Ravens selected Oher from Ole Miss in the first round of the 2009 NFL Draft. His life through his final year of high school and first year of college is a subject of Michael Lewis’s 2006 book, The Blind Side: Evolution of a Game. In fact, Lewis grew up in New Orleans and went to high school with Sean Tuohy, Oher’s adopted dad. Both have returned to the Big Easy, hoping for a Hollywood-style ending to the Super Bowl.
Inspired by the public’s response to The Blind Side, the Tuohys created the Making it Happen Foundation, which offers financial help to those committed to improving the lives of children living in poverty and unstable homes. According to the Associated Press newswire, they described their foundation grants as modest. In some cases, it might not be more than paying for a flight to help someone make a cross-country trip to adopt a child. Bullock has remained close friends with the entire family since filming the motion picture, and sometimes, her charity work in New Orleans coincides with that of the Tuohys.
One thing is almost certain, Sandra Bullock and Leigh Anne Tuohy will be emphatically yelling out plays from the sidelines to Baltimore coach John Harbaugh. And, so it goes…
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