Gary W. Moore is a humble man, calm and friendly, happy to discuss the life of his father. After all, the tale of his father is larger than life, and a story we can learn from – because it is a tale about second chances, but second chances in a direction that we don’t always expect.
Gary’s father, Gene Moore, began his journey to the pages of Playing With The Enemy as a 15 year old baseball prodigy that was drafted by the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1940. The outbreak of World War II, however, demanded that the young phenom join the military. Gene Moore joined the United States Navy, and his tour began in North Africa where he played for the Navy baseball team to entertain the troops. The duty was not always easy, or away from danger, evidenced by the death of the center fielder when an explosion on the field took the young ballplayer’s life. Later, as the war effort concentrated more on the theater in Europe, Gene Moore was sent on a secret mission to guard German POWs in Louisiana. These prisoners were very special, however, and their capture was a secret to the outside world for a tremendous reason. The submarine these German sailors were the crew of was the U-505 (now on display in Chicago, Illinois at the Museum of Science and Industry), inside which the United States procured the Enigma Machine and all of the code books that went with it, enabling us to stay on top of the changes in the code, and therefore assisting us in winning the war against Germany. During this time that Gene Moore guarded these prisoners, primarily out of his desire to play baseball (and perhaps a little boredom), Gene Moore and his fellow military baseball players taught the enemy soldiers how to play America’s pastime.
The story does not end there, however. Tragedy, and the storms of life that can crush dreams, and enable the birth of new ones, came to Gene Moore’s life. It was then that he learned about second chances, and the importance of the unexpected things in life.
This inspirational true story is being made into a film by Producer Gerald R. Molen via his WhiteLight Entertainment production company. Molen’s and White Light Entertainment’s credits include Schindler’s List, Minority Report, Jurassic Park, The Lost World: Jurassic Park, Twister, Casper, Rain Man and The Flintstones. White Light Entertainment has to its credit 33 Academy Award nominations, 19 Academy Awards, including two for the best picture and a total box office collection of $4 billion from the 14 movies it has produced so far. The screenplay was written by WhiteLight director of development David Ranes and the author’s son, Toby Moore, who’s also set to portray his grandfather. The film is in production now and is slated to be released during the first quarter of 2009.
I first met Gary W. Moore, the author of Playing With The Enemy, at a book signing in San Diego on October 1, 2006. A month later we got together in Pasadena, California after another book signing, and it was then that I realized I had made a wonderful friend. Since then, Gary W. Moore has appeared on my Political Pistachio Radio Show a number of times (April 7, 2007; June 16, 2007 with his publisher: Ted Savas; and January 26, 2008).
And honestly, Playing With The Enemy is a great read, and a book that is not about World War II and Baseball as much as it is about the human spirit.
As for the movie? Well, I hear there is going to be some great acting talents in the film, but the producer has not released the names, yet. However, when we know who those actors are that are in the film, you will find out about it on Political Pistachio, and of course at that time we will have Gary W. Moore return to Political Pistachio Radio to discuss the latest news regarding this blockbuster film.