Ask any person who has seen the movie Gettysburg, where they viewed it for the first time, chances are they will say when it was on TNT during one of the numerous airings in the late 1990’s. In fact, there are still many people today who forget that the film actually debuted in theaters, becoming a moderate success, before being re-broadcast on television. The immense popularity of the television showing prompted many people to endear themselves to the American Civil War, because now they could watch such a long film from the comfort of their own homes, the massive story being spread out over two nights. We can all agree that one of the reasons why Gods and Generals was not as popular was because many people did not want to sit in a theater for nearly four hours, which is why the film should have made it to television within a year after it was released on DVD, the sales of which were enormous (600,000 units were sold or rented in the first month alone), and one of the reasons why a director’s cut was even released to begin with. The interest is now there because of the 150th Anniversary, so the time is now right, in the next few months, for G & G to make its way to television.
I cannot think of any other network besides TNT that would be willing to give six hours of air-time (two nights, three hours for each so that commercials can be worked in) to one film, and while I do not know Ted Turner’s current involvement with the network that still bears his name, I would have to think that this idea will be discussed, or should be discussed, by the people who own the rights to the film. This is my suggestion to them, because I believe it is something that needs to happen. I am not going to create a petition or start an email chain (Ron is busy enough with other work, and I do not want to bother him with this), because they are usually fruitless efforts, but if Warner Brothers or Ron Maxwell himself is still reading my site, then they will see this idea, and hopefully see that it could work. The first night would show parts one to three, which is where the intermission came during the premiere, and then the second night could show the remaining parts. This is a chance, not only for additional exposure, but for more money to be made in addition to sales of Blu Ray books and box sets. As you all know, Ron told me in an interview that The Last Full Measure is not dead, and that he still works on it often with plenty of hope. If we want this final chapter to be made, then we must show the powers that be that there is plenty of interest in the subject, and more importantly, from a business perspective, plenty of money to be made.
Like this idea and think it could work? Feel free to send the link to others, and of course, share your opinion in the comment section below.