Jeremy Coon is a film producer whose greatest claim to fame is Napoleon Dynamite. Two years after that hit he acted as the producer for The Sasquatch Gang and Tim Skousen made his feature film debut as a director. Lightning did not strike twice.
Now skip ahead nearly a decade and the two have re-teamed for a documentary that may not be a big hit theatrically either, but it is one fascinating look at what film fans can do when they fall in love with a movie.
Drafthouse Films, with sales and distribution support provided by MVD Entertainment Group, announced this past week that the documentary team of Jeremy Coon and Tim Skousen’s Raiders!: The Story of the Greatest Fan Film Ever Made will be available on Aug. 16 as a Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack.
Eric Zala, Chris Strompolos and Jayson Lamb saw Raiders of the Lost Ark during the summer of 1981, and, being somewhat nerdish, decided to recreate the film on video shot-for-shot. They spent the next seven years shooting the film and got it all down with the exception of the exotic fighter plane sequence featuring Indiana Jones with the burly Nazi mechanic (who gets a propeller shave).
The fan film that they created, Raiders of the Lost Ark: The Adaptation, was finished in 1989 … and then, they went their separate ways. The film eventually surfaced on video and both its origins and the subsequent underground screenings is the subject of Raiders!: The Story of the Greatest Fan Film Ever Made.
Do Eric Zala, Chris Strompolos and Jayson Lamb put their differences aside and complete their fan film? Circle Aug. 16 on your viewing calendar, pick up a copy of this Drafthouse Films release and find out.
It is currently playing in selected theatres, but those venues might be difficult to find … the ARR, for the record, is 60 days.