Extended director's cut of Civil War film to premiere at Hylton

Film director Ron Maxwell will lead a July 22 panel discussion and theatrical premiere of the new extended director’s cut of Gods and Generals at the Hylton Performing Arts Center on George Mason University’s Prince William campus.

The premiere, organized by Virginia-based Journey Through Hallowed Ground Partnership, commemorates the 150th anniversary of the Civil War.

In directing Gods and Generals, Maxwell drew inspiration from the epic form.

Gods and Generals was conceived of and produced as an epic with enormous themes,” said Maxwell, who describes the Civil War as the American Iliad. The film Gods and Generals is based off Jeffrey Shaara’s 1974 Pulitzer prize-winning novel of the same name.

Maxwell believes Americans have a lot to learn from the Civil War, especially when it comes to respecting one another.

“By the spring of 1861, no one listened to each other and the voices of conciliation were drowned out,” Maxwell said. “Today, we should look back at the Civil War and say never again will we dehumanize.”

Maxwell emphasizes the importance of agreeing to disagree.

Although Gods and Generals received mixed reviews when it originally came out in 2003, fans of the film argue that what critics perceive as its weaknesses are actually its greatest strengths.

Gods and Generals was criticized for not portraying good guys and bad guys,” Maxwell said before emphasizing that his film provides a factual depiction instead of a judgemental one.

“I don’t make the moral judgments,” Maxwell said. “I leave it to the audience.”

All of Gods and Generals’ footage was shot in Virginia, West Virginia and Maryland, and the film had a positive influence on these states.

“All sorts of people were hired locally,” Maxwell said.

Gods and Generals also positively impacted Virginia tourism.

“Visitorship at Fredericksburg and Manassas went up,” Maxwell said.
Maxwell, who collaborated with Mason’s College of Visual and Performing Arts in 2007, is glad the panel discussion is taking place at Mason.

“It is a great opportunity for fans to have questions answered,” Maxwell said. “We should have a lot of fun.”

Actors and historical advisers from the film will also participate in the panel discussion and will be on hand to sign autographed copies of the extended director’s cut of Gods and Generals.

Doors will open at 2 p.m. and the panel discussion will start at 3 p.m. After an autograph session, the film will be shown at 5 p.m.

Tickets cost $30 for students, American Civil War re-enactors and military members. Tickets cost $61 for the general public.

All proceeds from the event support the educational programs of the Journey Through Hallowed Ground Partnership to help educate students of all ages of America’s shared national heritage.


Your rating: None Average: 4 (1 vote)
Student Media Group: