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“Morning Light” opens Friday in theaters across the country

A boat, an ocean and a team of young adults are the cast of characters in Disney’s new documentary film “Morning Light,” which opens Friday in select U.S. theaters.

The much-anticipated film, which has drawn big crowds for prescreenings in Los Angeles, Annapolis, Md., and Baltimore, tells the story of 15 young sailors who were selected and trained to compete in the famous Transpac race, which covers 2,500 miles of open ocean between Los Angeles and Honolulu.

“Morning Light” rolls adventure, action, drama, suspense and human interest into one package, which should resonate with sailors and landlubbers alike. It is hard to resist the opportunity to be a fly on the wall in the tight confines of a boat in the middle of nowhere, in a real-life drama where the actors are not acting, but sailing.

“We wanted to document the whole experience for everyone to see and feel as if they had the adventure themselves,” said executive producer Roy E. Disney, nephew of Walt Disney, filmmaker and life-long sailboat racer.

Disney, who sailed 16 Transpacs himself and once owned the elapsed time record, hopes the movie will intrigue the audience not just with its sailing angle, but by highlighting the transforming powers of a long and successful ocean passage.

For information, and to find theater listings, visit the film’s Web site.

— Dieter Loibner