Pittsburgh Steelers get their shot on the big screen in ‘The Dark Knight Rises’

Hines Ward, Ben Roethlisberger and Pittsburgh Mayor Luke Ravenstahl were just three of the 10,000 Pittsburgh area residents who participated in a massive scene for Christopher Nolan’s “The Dark Knight Rises” at Heinz Field Saturday.

According to numerous reports including the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, the Pittsburgh Tribune Review and ABC WTAE, Roethlisberger and Ward were joined by fellow Pittsburgh Steelers Willie Colon, Troy Polamalu, Heath Miller, Ike Taylor, Ryan Clark, Aaron Smith and Brett Keisel as extras on the Gotham Rogues football team.  Legendary former Steelers Coach Bill Cower returned to the grid iron as a coach, but it appeared he was on the sidelines for the competing Rapid City Monuments.  Taking a break from his civic duties, Mayor Ravenstahl (a still spry 31-years-old) played a kicker for the Monuments as well.

Out of “Rises” star-studded ensemble, only Tom Hardy (as Bane) reportedly appeared in front of the thousands of Pittsburgh area residents standing in for Rogues fans.

The local and national media have descended on Pittsburgh to chronicle the production which has lead to images of Batman (Christian Bale) fighting Bane (Hardy) in daylight and Anne Hathaway’s Selina Kyle riding a motorcycle through town.  The latter scenes may have prompted Warner Bros. to release this first image of Hathaway in the film on Friday.

“The Dark Knight Rises” is also expected to film in Chicago, London, Los Angeles and New York.  It debuts in theaters almost a year from now on July 20, 2012.