By Jessica Young
GateHouse News Service
Posted Jun 19, 2008 @ 02:18 PM
Christopher Andersen remembers devouring the Warren Commission Report on the assassination of President John F. Kennedy as a 9-year-old.
“I sat down with it with my dad. How many kids are riveted by something like that?” the Westmont, Ill., resident said. “But the JFK assassination just mesmerized me. It changed the country entirely — our innocence was lost.”
That fateful day in Dallas stuck with Andersen as one conspiracy theory after another surfaced over the years. So much so that it became the subject of his production company’s latest documentary nearly 45 years after the assassination.
“Frame 313: The JFK Assassination Theories,” which was just released, is a 114-minute video that uses rare footage, new testimonials and expert interviews to explore the five most credible hypotheses surrounding the events of Nov. 22, 1963.
“One thing we’re very proud of is that we don’t have an angle. We present evidence that supports multiple arguments and leave it up to the audience to decide who was behind the murder,” said Andersen, executive producer at Sundown Entertainment in Westmont. “It’s the first complete, objective overview of the most controversial, unresolved murder case in U.S. history.”
The educational film, which soon will get a distributor, lays out substantiation for the Warren Commission’s “Lone Gunman” findings, a CIA/mafia plot, a strictly mafia scheme, a Soviet Union/KGB maneuver and a CIA/anti-Fidel Castro Cuban exiles conspiracy.
Interview clips bolster, refute and even acknowledge question marks in the convoluted theories. Viewers must then weigh testimony and piece together the puzzle.
Although “Frame 313” doesn’t take sides, Andersen personally doesn’t buy the Warren report’s conclusion that Lee Harvey Oswald single-handedly killed the president. Especially since the House Select Committee on Assassinations later disputed the commission’s acoustic analysis and decided Oswald “probably” murdered Kennedy as a result of a conspiracy.
“I think JFK was also shot from the front, and we talked to an emergency room doctor who stood above the head wound, which was corroborating proof to me,” he said. “In my opinion, the CIA and mafia have their fingerprints all over it. I mean, the strongest thing I’ve heard is (CIA pilot) Tosh Plumley admitting that he was sent to Dealey Plaza to abort an assassination attempt but that they were too late.
“When you look at who was there, it was like a Batman gallery — there were rogues and villains crawling all over the vicinity that day,” Andersen said.
While conducting research for the DVD, Lynn Sanders, a co-writer from Winnetka, Ill., actually feared for her life.
“Over 100 people who knew something about the assassination have been killed, and I truly did worry about my safety,” she said. “So many people doing research on it had an unusual accident or died mysteriously. To me, that points to a cover-up.”
The undetermined cause of death for reporter Dorothy Kilgallen, who interviewed Oswald’s assassin, Jack Ruby, was forefront in Sanders’ mind as she was reading documents and editing footage over the course of more than a year.
“Frame 313” was an intensive, 19-month-long project. Andersen traveled extensively to do background research and record new interviews with investigators, authors and former agents and operatives to add to original archival footage from bystanders, local breaking newscasts and Oswald’s public appearances. The film also includes clips from a JFK symposium of historians and government bigwigs. Sanders calls the documentary an encyclopedia of information.
Andersen said he doesn’t believe interest in the assassination will dissipate any time soon, especially because many records still are classified, fueling some people’s assumptions of a conspiracy.
“If the government thinks this was such a straightforward murder case and Oswald wasn’t connected to anyone else, why are files from the investigations sealed?” he said. “The powers that be didn’t want something to come out. And we wanted this film to get more information out there.”
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