Editor's Note: An earlier version of this blog indicated that the film discussed here will premier at the Kecksburg UFO Festival in Kecksburg, PA July 27-19. That is incorrect as the film is still in production. Guess I was just a little over anxious to see it!
"The Russians. Blame it on the Russians." That's what President Lyndon Baines Johnson decides should be done in the new feature film, "Kecksburg," which is now in production and will be promoted at the Kecksburg UFO Festival in Kecksburg, PA, July 27-29.
Check out the trailer above, which will provide a sneak peek at "Kecksburg," based on actual events of December 9th, 1965 when an unidentified flying object reportedly landed in a farmer's field outside this tiny Western Pennsylvania community.
It was an event that I covered as a young reporter for the Greensburg Tribune-Review, and now I will be sharing my experience at the Festival's Conference Sunday, July 29.
The film stars Richard John Walters as LBJ, Caesar James as Senator Robert Byrd of West Virginia, Emily Lapisardi as Lady Bird Johnson, Thomas Fuchel as General Edward Martin, Criton McLauglin as Ralph, Connor Hollen as Trailbreak Tommy, and Noah Stalnaker as David Buddy and Eric Hack as Agent Donovan. Also featured are Chris McLaughlin, Monica Ammons, Erica Balon, and Stephanie Riker. The film is directed by Cody Knotts and is about a year away from completion.
Meanwhile, there will be two other movies filmed in the area that will be shown at the festival and Stan Gordon-UFO-Bigfoot researcher and author will give an update on more recent UFO, Bigfoot, and other strange encounters from the local area and statewide.
Seth Breedlove, award winning film maker and director of Small Town Monsters Production Company, produced the recent film “Invasion on Chestnut Ridge” that covers the Kecksburg incident and the strange encounters around the ridge.
And, Aaron Dunbar, a Kittanning, PA author and producer of the recently released family movie about Bigfoot, “A Wish For Giants,” will be giving a presentation and show the movie at the conference.
Story of the Century
When given the assignment to check out the story, my editor promised it would turn out to be the "story of the century." I was just 22, a cub reporter if there ever was one, and I really thought he was sending me on a wild goose chase.
But if a story with long-lasting appeal fits that "story of the century" description, then my crusty old editor was right because investigators, journalists, and now film-makers are still searching for answers. What really happened that night? What landed? Why all the secrecy
When I arrived on the scene, armed soldiers guarded entry to the field where the object was reported to have landed. I was threatened with arrest if I tried to walk to the site a few hundred yards away where flashing lights indicated some activity by the authorities. Yet, the soldier who refused to allow me to enter the area said "nothing" was there and nothing had happened.
The next day I was told the same thing when I checked with the local police, the fire department and the U.S. Department of Defense. Nothing was there, I was told. It was just a meteor.
But since then the story has been kept alive by investigators and journalists who have refused to accept that explanation. One radio reporter actually mysteriously died while working on the story.
I'm anxious to see the film when it is finished, but meanwhile am looking forward to visiting with all those who will be attending the Festival and hearing what others have to say. Should be an interesting weekend.