After starting one of the most successful viral ad campaigns in the history of the Internet, “Will It Blend,” YouTube invited us to come to their first-ever live event in San Francisco right after the 2008 presidential election.
This was a two-hour event that included the likes of Katy Perry, will.i.am (when his dumb Yes We Can Obama song was big) and Jamie and Adam from The Mythbusters.
All at once I saw that this was not just a streaming event with everyone who was famous on YouTube, this was an Obama celebration.
I got to meet The Mythbusters, who I loved and ironically have seen my “Will it Blend” channel and told me how much they loved it. I felt a connection. They invited us to their shop, etc. But, once the topic of where we were from came into play (Utah … oh, you must be Mormon), they pointed out that we sure did real damage with Proposition 8. This was just weeks after the election and it was still heavy on our minds. They ignored us the rest of the show.
I have come to realize that everything has become political, that my heroes of yesterday (Steven Spielberg, George Lucas, others I won’t name) slowly one-by-one were now against me or anything I stood for. There are honestly no more heroes.
The chance of any directing career in Hollywood were never going to surface for me simply because of who I am.
The Last Eagle Scout is a response to this charge.
Documentaries are great, very needed and serve their purpose, but they honestly preach to the choir. It is time for us right of center folk to stop caring what the pop culture says about us and just make our own films.
The Last Eagle Scout is a dramedy/action “what-if” film about how the government tries to shut down the Boy Scouts, while scouter Cliff Elliot (Nick Whitaker) is trying to get his Eagle award.
Political Correctness abounds when Cliff does simple things such as plant flags, come to school in his uniform and say the original Pledge of Allegiance (there’s a new one in the film).
It is also a study in how literally overnight, the media can destroy a person or organization, if it chooses to, by falsely lining up the Boy Scouts as a terrorist organization (because they practice self reliance and using guns).
We break all the rules in making this film as well, such as producing without the union, killing a live fish on screen and yes, very politically offensive material. I simply don’t care. And these issues aren’t right or left issues, just what is right or wrong.
It is obviously difficult to produce films where the message doesn’t overtake the art. There has to be a proper marriage of the two–hopefully I have come close. As a conservative/libertarian-leaning filmmaker, I really feel that we are now the counter culture and we are living the ’60s in reverse. Protest films like Easy Rider and Planet of the Apes, which give great cultural messages, will now be replaced with new issues because the originators of the ’60s are now getting what they asked for.
I am currently self-distributing the film on DVD on my website at lasteaglescout.com, where you can see more information about the film. We are in pre-production on our next film, Lemonade Stand. You can guess what that one is about.