John White, Founder of American Piledriving Equipment (APE) and an area resident, has stepped up to pile on the majority of funding for an historic local UFO conspiracy movie that will begin filming this year.
The film – “The Maury Island Incident” – is based on the true story of Harold Dahl’s UFO sighting that occurred off Maury Island on June 21, 1947, considered by many to be one of the first modern-day encounters. This incident – which has never before been turned into a film – happened just two days before Ken Arnold’s historic UFO sighting, and 16 days before the infamous Roswell crash.
The summer of 1947 is noted by many as the “summer of saucers,” as numerous flying disc sightings were reported throughout the US, along with increased interest and investigation by authorities from the FBI and other government agencies.
The 22-minute film will be Directed by Scott Schaefer (Founder/Publisher, South King Media; 3-time National Emmy winning Writer for “Bill Nye the Science Guy“; Director, “Penn & Teller: Bullsh*t!”, “Sightings,” and others). Steve Edmiston (“The Day My Parents Became Cool,” “Crimes of the Past,” “A Relative Thing,” “Farewell to Harry,” and others) will write the screenplay. Schaefer and Edmiston will also serve as Producers.
White was recruited to the project by one of its other Co-Executive Producers, Danny House, owner of Burien’s popular Tin Room Bar and Theater. After hearing the idea from House, White went, well…ape.
“Once Danny told me the story and introduced me to Steve and Scott, I was sold,” White said. “I love unusual stories, am a huge movie buff, and the fact that this one is local – and has never been turned into a film – played a big part in my decision.”
The movie also includes a character based on the first “Man in Black,” who drove a black 1947 Buick when he met with Dahl the morning after his sighting, where he intimidated him to not talk any further about the case.
White got so enthused about the project that, shortly after expressing interest in it, he found and purchased a restored, original, black 1947 Buick that will be used in the film. White also plans to use it to generate more attention to the Burien-born movie – click image to see larger version:
In January, 1990, White invented his own pile driving machine in his garage in White Center, then founded APE, featuring his revolutionary “heavy metal enhanced” high frequency vibrating pile driving machine that operates on using vegetable oil. APE has grown into the largest pile driving equipment company in the world, and is the largest user of hydraulic vegetable oil, as John’s machines operate exclusively on vegetable oil to prevent damage to water and soil.
White’s other ventures include Crazy Horse Motorcycles LLC, which manufactures the 45 degree V-Twin engine featured on the TV show “American Choppers.” His unique engine is the powerplant featured in Microsoft’s “Gears of War Trike” built by Paul Jr. and featured in the video game. In fact, every engine featured in Paul Jr. Design’s custom bikes was donated to the TV show by White.
White and his wife Teresa (who runs Statements Home Decor in Olde Burien) also recently purchased the historic “Forest Ledge” mansion in Seahurst, which includes the largest pipe organ west of the Mississippi. The couple is currently restoring the unique estate, which was built in 1911, and they’re hoping to move into it soon.
Shooting on the film is scheduled to begin June 21, 2013 – the 66th anniversary of Harold Dahl’s sighting. A kick-off event took place on Dec. 5th at the Tin Theater – read about and see photos here.
THE REST OF THE TEAM (SO FAR):
STEVE EDMISTON, WRITER/PRODUCER
Steve Edmiston works as an independent feature film screenwriter and producer. He is also an attorney with 25 years of experience practicing business, litigation intellectual property, and entertainment law. Edmiston is a frequent teacher, advisor, and speaker on film and film industry issues. He has shown his films at a variety of festivals including: Palm Springs, Fort Lauderdale, Seattle International Film Festival, Big Island Film Festival, Ashland and Port Townsend.
Edmiston Wrote and Directed the award-winning short The Day My Parents Became Cool, which was shot entirely in the south Puget Sound area.
Find more information on Edmiston’s screen credits and films, including cast information, trailer videos and release dates on IMDb.
SCOTT SCHAEFER, DIRECTOR/PRODUCER
Scott Schaefer is a three-time National Emmy Award winning Writer (Bill Nye the Science Guy, PBS/Disney) with over 27 years’ experience in media, including over 20 as a Director and Producer, six of which were spent in the trenches of Hollywood.
His directing credits includes for the TV shows Penn & Teller:Bullsh*t! (Showtime) where he was nominated for a Directors Guild Award for Outstanding Directing in a Reality Show (2005), Sightings (a UFO show for Paramount Pictures), The Arsenio Hall Show (Paramount), Totally Hidden Video (Fox), The Late Show (Fox), Fox On-Air Promotions, Almost Live! (KING-TV, where he won 6 Local Emmy Awards) and many others in-between.
LAURA BETH & SCOTT PETERSON, CO-EXECUTIVE PRODUCERS
Scott Peterson is the Founder/CEO of SAFE Boats, an American-owned aluminum boat manufacturer and leading supplier to military, federal, state and local law enforcement, fire and rescue agencies throughout North America and around the world.
Founded in 1997, SAFE Boats International (SAFE) designs and builds highly reliable and extremely durable vessels that help keep military, law enforcement and fire professionals safe as they carry out their duties, protect citizens and work to save lives.
Laura Beth Peterson volunteers for the Salvation Army in White Center, and has also served as volunteer Co-Chair of the Three Tree Point Fireworks Fund with Scott Schaefer for the past two years.
Danny is very involved with the Burien community, with the annual Burien Brat Trot fundraiser for the Highline Schools Foundation and Safe Kids South King County and many other projects.
Danny will be showing the film in The Tin Theater when it’s released, and will also be working on the production.
NANCY PAPPAS BARNHART, ASSOCIATE PRODUCER
An accomplished Advertising Manager, Nancy spent 15 years as Director of Corporate Communications & Media Relations for the McDonald’s Corporation, eleven years with Horizon Air and four years with The Bon Marche.
Nancy was invited to join the management team at Highline Public Schools as interim Public Information Officer. Then in October 2001, she accepted the permanent role of the district’s Director of Human Resources.
In September 2008, Nancy joined the Aviation High School staff as Program Director to dedicate time to design, develop and manage Career Readiness/Mentoring and Internships programs. In 2009, she received her Career & Technical Education teaching certificate and now, along with her role in the Career Readiness effort, she teaches Aviation Careers.
MICHAEL BOYDSTUN, DIRECTOR OF PHOTOGRAPHY
Longtime local DP/Editor who first worked with Schaefer on KING-TV’s “Almost Live!” and again on “Bill Nye the Science Guy” as well as numerous other projects, Boydstun is one of the best in the biz.
“Amongst all the DPs I’ve ever worked with, both in Seattle and Hollywood, Boydstun was by far the best,” Schaefer said. “He has an uncanny ability to instantly storyboard on the fly in his head, a skill I’ve rarely encountered.”
The film will be released on the short film festival circuit, with hopes of it either being sold to a studio, or gathering enough attention and funding for the team to do a feature-length version or television series.
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