Sunday, September 30, 2007
CWS: The Salt Lake Tribune said that September Dawn was a bad case of "My God is better than your God." I felt like the gauntlet had been thrown down.
In the Old Testament, David and many of the other prophets prevailed upon the Lord not to let their enemies ridicule Him.
I remember the last line Yul Brynner had as Ramses in the movie The Ten Commandments. Ramses said of Moses, "His God is God."
Let it be shouted from the rooftops, MY GOD IS GOD!
Thank you, Carole, for the interesting and inspiring interview about your movie, September Dawn.
Here's a link to an Associated Press article from September 11, 2007 by Paul Foy titled "Mormon Church Regrets 1857 Massacre": http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5ggz44H5s_dPSr_06i6_YeAkRK1dQ
Saturday, September 29, 2007
Carole Whang Schutter was interviewed on the WNYG's (Spirit of New York) radio program "Iron Sharpens Iron" on September 19th, 2007. You can go to that date's blog and listen to the interview here: www.sharpens.blogspot.com.
WNYG's "Iron Sharpens Iron" interviewed a former Mormon priest, William Norman Grigg, on September 13th, 2007, and discussed the movie, September Dawn. You can find a link to that interview on the blog for that date also at www.sharpens.blogspot.com.
Included in the interviewed with Carole Whang Schutter was another former Mormon, Latayne C. Scott, who has written books on the Mormon faith. Find more about her at www.Latayne.com.
And finally, there's more about Carole Whang Schutter at www.CWSchutter.com.
The final part 9 of my interview with Carole Whang Schutter will be posted tomorrow.
Thursday, September 27, 2007
CWS: During the tense scene between Jonathan and his father, played by Jon Voight, it started to rain and the rain gave it such a wonderful effect. God blessed the production in so many ways.
When we were filming publicity shots, the commentator asked me, "Why is this story Romeo and Juliet? Weren't they (the lovers in our movie) all Christians?" I asked her if she had an hour.
Dianne: Please expand on that.
CWS: I asked her if she had an hour because it was clear to me that like many Christians, she thought LDS to be just another denomination. If I had to encapsulate my answer I would say this: The dictionary says a Christian is one who professes belief in Jesus as Christ or follows the religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus. Christ is defined as The Messiah, as foretold by the prophets of the Hebrew Scriptures.
On both counts Mormons do not qualify. They profess belief in and follow a religion based on the teachings of Joseph Smith who claimed "I boast that no man ever did such a work as I. The followers of Jesus ran away from Him, but the Latter-day Saints never ran away from me yet." From History of the Church, by Joseph Smith, vol. 6, pp. 408-409. Joseph Smith in that same volume on page 319-320 in the year 1844, said, "Jehovah created ME to be your God on Earth and the Prophets have been chosen to be my mouth. To question the Prophets and the Apostles is to question Jehovah Himself." Any prophet that deifies himself is not a follower of Jesus who says, "I am the Way, the Truth, and the Light. No man cometh before the father except through Me." [John 14:6]
Second, who is the Christ, the Messiah? He is the son of God. God incarnate. Christians believe there is only one God but believe that He is God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Ghost. Mormons believe that Adam is the god of this planet, that Jesus and Satan are brothers, that Adam/god had sexual relations with Mary and created Jesus, and that temple Mormons chosen by Joseph Smith get to be gods of their own planet. That women can only go to heaven if the men they are sealed to (in this day and age, not necessarily their husbands since some of them marry outside the faith) call their secret name. I don't know if this has changed with women's lib. Things can be changed if the prophet of the church has new revelations from god. The bottom line is Mormons are polytheists, they believe in many gods. Christians believe, as the Jews believe, "Our God is one."
Coming next: Closing thoughts.
Tuesday, September 25, 2007
CWS: The screenplay came first. I began writing the book during pre-production. While on location I became convinced I should turn my research and various scenes that were deleted into a book because of the interest of the crew in knowing more about the Mountain Meadows Massacre.
Coming next: Do you have any great behind-the-screen stories?
Additional comments from Carole Whang Schutter will be posted on http://www.buttsaboutit.com/ by the end of September. Check the Entertainment page. Also...
Even more comments from Carole Whang Schutter will be included in the October issue of Butts About It.com E-zine due out by the last Friday of the month. Get your free subscription to this monthly e-zine at http://www.buttsaboutit.com/ . Don't miss the rest of this interview! Subscribe now, before the next issue is sent. You only have a couple days...
Monday, September 24, 2007
Want to know what you're subscribing to? Read an issue here: http://www.buttsaboutit.com/ButtsAboutIt%20September%2007.htm
Additional comments from Carole Whang Schutter will be included in the October issue due out the end of September, so hurry and get your subscription now!
Part 7 of the interview will post tomorrow.
Thursday, September 20, 2007
Dianne: Before I post Ms. Schutter's answer to this question, here is a statement I received separately written by Wayne Atilio Capurro, a descendant of one of the Mormons involved:
I commend Mr. Cain, Jon Voight, Carole Schutter and anyone associated with the making of September Dawn. My ancestor, portrayed by Mr. Voight in the film, was a participant in the Mountain Meadows Massacre and one of three men assigned to deliver valuables taken from the murdered immigrants personally to Brigham Young. The leadership of the LDS religion has a 150 year history of blaming the Indians, blaming the victims and scapegoating their members while denying all responsibility for a crime that disgraced humanity. They continue to do so in the face of overwhelming evidence to the contrary.
Wayne Atilio Capurro, Author of White Flag and the great great grandson of Philip Klingensmith, the Mormon Bishop of Cedar City, Utah in 1857.
CWS: Wayne has been such a great supporter, although I never met him.
I also had a phone call from one of Jacob Hamblin's descendants who told me got the shivers listening to the actors speak because it sounded exactly like his grandfather. He said his great great grandfather would have killed one of his wives if Brigham Young told him to. Such was the blind loyalty of the Mormons back then.
The ones who have contacted me are extremely supportive. All have left the Mormon church.
Wayne said his ancestor died a broken man, feeling betrayed by the church he had given his loyalty to. He told me no one would have done the massacre if they hadn't been ordered to do it by their religious leaders, i.e. Brigham Young. He also said that he learned what it was like to be a Christian by reading my book and that he thought I honored not only the victims, but people like him. I consider that the highest compliment.
You see, I wanted people to see the real Jesus. Reviewers have accused me of practically putting halos on the Christians. I'm sorry, but the only Jesus some people will ever see is on the silver screen. Keeping this in mind, the pastor of the wagon train was a type and shadow of Jesus Christ.
Coming next: Tell us about the book you also released by the same title, September Dawn.
Tuesday, September 18, 2007
CWS: I didn't work with them. I met some of them [at the premier of the movie] and they all thanked me.
One lady said her grandfather, the oldest descendant there, said after he saw the movie that he could now die in peace knowing that the truth had finally been made public. I was very moved by that.
Coming next: Have you heard from any descendants of the participants on the Mormon side?
Thursday, September 13, 2007
CWS: It has been suggested to me by many supportive ex-Mormons that each ward has a media representative and that one of their duties is to keep an eye out for any kind of negativity in the press or any kind of negative movies about the LDS faith. The job of the representative is to "round up the troops" to inundate the media on all fronts with angry, negative letters. It is a very effective way of fighting.
The LDS church is very rich, very organized, and very powerful. They own major newspapers, are major stockholders in Coca Cola, the satellites, and major enterprises like the Marriott Hotels. They have amazing control over their people and blind loyalty.
If only the Christians were as organized...we'd probably rule the world! But, Christianity is based on free will and salvation through grace. So maybe we don't "work" as hard to get to heaven.
Coming next: Did you work with any of the descendants of the survivors of the wagon train? Have you met them?
Tuesday, September 11, 2007
CWS: Their formal reaction is to say that it is historically incorrect. I think there is much more of a reaction behind the scenes. We are seeing it in the blogs and reviews. It is interesting that the negative reviews are almost cookie cutter, and that there are hundreds of reviews on the movie web sites. Although some very well known critics like Rex Reed gave it high praise, the reviews are either all F's or mostly A's. The word sabotage comes to mind. It is my belief that eventually people will make up their own minds and not let bloggers and the critics make up their minds.
I also find it interesting that movie reviewers have suddenly become historians. I do not pretend to be the caliber of Will Bagley, the Utah historian who wrote Blood of the Prophets, but I stand by our research.
Coming next: I've heard the LDS church tried to stop the film. Is that true? In what ways?
Friday, September 7, 2007
CWS: I was scared to write this movie as truth. I first wrote it as fiction involving a made-up cult called the "Jehovites." Chris [Cain] told me to write the truth. I told him I didn't want people to get mad at me.
God wants Holy Ghost boldness. We are in the last days and we need to stand up for our God and for the truth.
Coming next: How has the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints responded to the movie?
Wednesday, September 5, 2007
I invite you to listen in to my conversation with Ms. Schutter...
Dianne: How did you come to know about the Mountain Meadows Massacre?
CWS: I was driving in Colorado when a story came to me about a pioneer girl on her way to the California gold rush whose wagon train was attacked by Mormons dressed as Indians. The story wouldn't leave me. Imagine my surprise when I began researching the wagon trails to the gold rush and discovered the story of the Mountain Meadow Massacre.
Dianne: How did you come to write the screenplay for September Dawn?
CWS: We have a God who uses the foolish things of the world to confound the wise. We also have a God who likes to ask one to do things they don't know how to do because His strength is made perfect in our weakness.
When the idea for a screenplay popped into my head, my first reaction was, "Lord, I don't know how to write a screenplay."
But, of course, years before the Lord had arranged for me to become good friends with Chris and Sharon Cain. Chris is a retired director/producer who became my co-writer. He knew how to write a screenplay. The Lord provides.
Coming next: What challenges or fears have you experienced while writing this movie?
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