thoroughbred-who-portrayed-seabiscuit in-2003-film-dies

A Kentucky horse who was one of the horses to portray the famous racehorse Seabiscuit in the 2003 film of the same name has died.

Popcorn Deelites, a thoroughbred who portrayed the Depression-era racing star in the Tobey Maguire film, was 24, Old Friends Farm said in a statement.

Michael Blowen, the founder and president of Old Friends Farm, a nonprofit thoroughbred rescue organization, said Popcorn Deelites died of complications from colic.

“Pop’s Hollywood history made him an enormous fan favorite, of course,” Blowen said in a statement. “But what really won people over was his warm personality and friendly demeanor. Fans adored him and he adored the fans. He will be sorely missed here on the farm.”

Hall of Fame jockey Gary Stevens, who portrayed the famed jockey George Woolf in “Seabiscuit,” remembered Popcorn Deelites as “a star.”

“He was my go-to guy in all the big scenes. He not only won real races multiple times, but he won the famous match race playing Seabiscuit,” Stevens said.

After his turn in “Seabiscuit,” Popcorn Deelites went on to a racing career, starting 58 times and winning 11 times. His career earnings were about $57,000.

In 2005, after his retirement, the horse, a gelding, was taken to Old Friends Farm to live out the rest of his days.

In a tweet, Old Friends Farm said Popcorn Deelites’ paddock-mate Special Ring was “devastated” by his passing.

“Pops will always be a shining star in our hearts,” the tweet read.

Kalhan Rosenblatt is a reporter covering youth and internet culture for NBC News, based in New York.

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