04 April 2009
Ron Maxwell At The Liberty Civil War Seminar 2009
This year's CW seminar at Liberty University was truly a delight. As many of you already know, this year's theme was the Civil War in cinema. Over the next few days, I'll be posting some photos and comments about the event which I attended last weekend. This photo is, of course, yours truly with movie producer and director, Ron Maxwell. (Yeah, I know, I should have smiled.) Mr. Maxwell is holding a copy of my most recent book, which I presented to him after a late night chat we shared on Friday after the banquet. Upon returning to the Carter Glass Mansion (where we stayed the whole weekend) Friday evening, my wife and I decided to venture to the kitchen for a snack. There we bumped into Ron and spent some time discussing Gods & Generals and Jim Lewis. Since Lewis' figure was portrayed in Gods & Generals and Ron was interested in Lewis, I gave him a copy of my book, which has a whole chapter on the "mysterious" Jim Lewis.
We also discussed the director's cut of the film, which contains an additional hour and fort-five minutes. In this portion of the film, there is a sub-plot which follows John Wilkes Booth and the assasination of President Lincoln. There is also additional footage showing details of camp life, the Battle of Antietam, and more of the perspectives of African-Americans. Warner Brothers holds the rights to this and has not yet decided when or if it will be released. I mentioned the upcoming Sesquicentennial and Maxwell agreed that would be good timing to release the director's cut. We'll see.
Ron also discussed his desire to find funding for the last film in the CW trilogy: Last Full Measure. One thing that everyone agreed on: the current economic downturn is making it increasingly unlikely for studios and filmmakers to take on CW projects. Hopefully, that will change. However, as Brian Wills noted during his presentation, due to the time involved in making a good CW film, the project would have to start this year in order to be released during the WBTS' 150th. We were also informed by several reliable sources that the much anticipated Manhunt film, starring Harrison Ford, was dead due to costs and concerns over profitability. That's a shame as it looked like it was going to be a fascinating film. Stay tuned, more to come in the days ahead.