Mosby Documentary Being Filmed in Fairfax County

The Magic of the Movies


As we come down to the end of our movie making process, we have spent a lot of time picking out the historical pictures and photographs to use in the documentary.  These will be used to illustrate the stories during the narration.

We used a plethora of publications from Don Hakenson's library, which occupies his entire basement, to select the photographs and drawings.  I photographed them for our use to digitize them.  The magic comes in when we need to show something that we don't have.  For example, the narration of Mosby's wounding near Centreville, goes like this:

"On September 14, 1864, Mosby and two of his rangers, Guy Broadwater and Tom Love, were riding about two miles east of Centerville when they encountered five men from the 13th New York Cavalry, who recognized them as Confederates.

The New Yorkers attacked Mosby’s party and in the ensuring fight, Private Henry Smith of Company H from New York, had his horse shot, which fell and trapped him.  Lying under his mount, Smith used his revolver to defend himself.  One bullet struck the butt of Mosby’s pistol and glanced into his groin, causing an extremely painful wound."

We have plenty of action drawings of soldiers being shot while on their horses which we can use for Mosby being injured, but we needed a picture of someone shooting his pistol while lying under a horse.

What we found is a picture of one of Mosby's men, Tom Turner, thrusting a sword at a soldier who is lying under a horse, while the soldier is firing his pistol back up at Turner.  With a little advice from our graphics expert, Steve Wolfsberger, I was able to use Photoshop to delete Turner and his horse and change the picture into something that looks like it was drawn specifically for our purpose.  Just like magic!

One thing that bothers Don greatly is that many of the historical drawings show Mosby's men with sabers which they rarely if ever used.  So, another Photoshop trick was to copy a drawing of a pistol from one picture and then resize, reorient and paste it over the sabers in multiple other images.  More magic!

Now that we have all the pieces, it's up to Bert Morgan to perform his magic by pulling everything together in post production, adding the credits to everyone who supported or donated to the movie, and then sending the results off to David Rubenstein for a soundtrack.

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