Tuesday, 11 January 2011

'77

If there's one film I wanna see right now, it's '77. Problem is, it's not been released yet. Here's the trailer to give you a taste of what the film's about:



The film was written and directed by Patrick Read Johnson and it's based on Johnson's life growing up in rural America. In the film, Pat wants to become a filmmaker, and inspired by the likes of Jaws and Star Wars he sets out to make his own movie.

'77 refers to 1977, the year when Star Wars was released and the year the film is set in. Pat is played by John Francis Daley, of Freaks and Geeks fame, and the film was produced by Gary Kurtz who produced American Graffiti, Star Wars and The Empire Strikes Back, but there have been a few post-production problems that are holding the film back.

I remember first reading about '77 on the official Star Wars message boards a few years ago, and it seems the film was shot in 2007. There was even a premiere in 2008 at the Hamptons International Film Festival in New York. If you were to go to the website of Johnson's production company, Moonwatcher Inc., or the film's official website you'd think it was already released. But if you dig a little deeper, like on the IMDb message board for the film, you'll find a personal post from Johnson. Responding to claims that George Lucas was somehow holding the film back for legal reasons, Johnson says that film isn't finished yet and that it'll be released once post-production is finished. He says that the backers who put up money for certain aspects of post-production have pulled out, but once money comes through again the movie will get finished and released. But in the post, made in 2009, Johnson says he is confident '77 will see a release in 2010, and that date has obviously passed now.

Now there were some fairly big names involved in this film. While it is an indie film, it had the producer from Star Wars working on it, and Johnson has made movies before that have been released. I can understand Johnson wanting to take his time so that the film is as close to perfect as it can be, especially as it is based on his own life. But the amount of mystery surrounding the project and the length of time it's taking to get released is odd. And why was the film premiered if it wasn't ready yet?

It'd be great if the film gets a release eventually. Looks amazing from the trailer.

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