June 26, 2010: Barry Cauchon
LINK TO AUDIO INTERVIEW: An Awesometalk With Clint Ross
Running time: 25:28
Recorded on June 7, 2010
Hi all: On June 7, 2010, I had the pleasure of interviewing Clint Ross, the director of a new documentary called “The Angel of Marye’s Heights”. It is the story of Richard Kirkland, a Confederate soldier who participated in the Battle of Fredericksburg in December of 1862.
The battle was fought between Robert E. Lee’s Army of Northern Virginia and Major General Ambrose Burnside’s Army of the Potomac in what has been described as one of the Civil War’s most ‘one sided battles’ ever fought. Lee held the high ground outside the city of Fredericksburg and Burnside, against all logical recommendations by his own officers, decided to send his troops across open fields in an attempt to attack the Confederate lines. It was a disaster resulting in a bloodbath. The Union forces suffered thousands of casualties as wave after wave of their soldiers succumbed to the immense fire power of the fortified Confederate army. It was a turkey shoot.
Because the fighting had been so intense, and the atmosphere still highly volatile, no Union attempt could be made to rescue their injured troops from the battlefield. As evening came, the wounded Union soldiers began crying for mercy from the Confederate side, asking for water, blankets and anything they could spare. No one could help. Throughout that night and the early hours of the following morning the cries of suffering continued, weighing heavily on the Confederate soldiers’ consciences.
It was then, that Richard Kirkland, after getting permission from his commander, gathered canteens and supplies from his fellow soldiers and risked his life by stepping out onto the battlefield to tend to the wounded Union soldiers. Once the men in the Union lines realized that Kirkland was not out there to cause further harm to their men, but in fact, help them, the shooting stopped and they began cheering him on. The cheering was taken up by the Confederate soldiers as well. Kirkland made several trips to the injured soldiers that morning. And for a few short moments in time, humanity came to the battlefield. For his actions, Richard Kirkland was called the Angel of Marye’s Heights.
Clint Ross, decided to tell Kirkland’s story while at the Savannah College of Art and Design. It turned out to be his thesis film. He worked with Historian Michael Aubrecht and a very talented team to make the film into reality. It’s a piece they are all very proud of.
To learn more about Richard Kirkland and the film “The Angel of Marye’s Heights”, go to http://www.theangelmovie.com/. While there, be sure to check out the short teaser from the film as well as view their blog to get the most current updates.
As of this writing, I’d like to bring you up to date on the film’s premiere as noted below.
The movie premiere for The Angel of Marye’s Heights will be held on Saturday, July 24, at the Rappahannock Regional Library in historic downtown Fredericksburg from 6-9+pm. Open to the public. Film showing will begin at around 6:30. No one will be admitted entry during the 30-min. screening. Seating is for 200, so please arrive early. (Cast and
Crew will have reserve seating.) Our program will also feature remarks from the director and producer, intro of present cast and crew, acknowledgements of donors, presentation of cast awards, Q&A. The after-party will include free food and refreshments, music, exhibits of local museums and re-enactors, as well as battlefield preservation groups. This film was sponsored by the National Civil War Life Foundation and has been donated as a permanent exhibit at the Civil War Life Museum. Subsequent screenings tentatively planned for southern VA, GA, SC, and PA. Proceeds benefit the film’s upcoming DVD production and distribution costs.
A SPECIAL THANKS FROM CLINT ROSS:
I just specially want to thank my fellow producer, Michael Aubrecht for all his hard work and dedication to this film. His knowledge and connections gave depth to this film.
My amazing animator Darrin Dick composed so many elements in the film and really created a solid brand that really captures the heart of the images associated with the “The Angel of Marye’s Heights.”
Zach Graber, a talented cinematographer literally translated my thoughts using the camera. His eye and professionalism shows in every scene.
Clayton De Wet, the location sound mixer virtually made for a seamless post-production process with sound design… it could not have been any better.
Nazar Loun, a very hands on camera operator combined skills with Zach and maintained a solid look through out the film… what a hard working guy.
Kevin Erhard came on board in the latter half of the post production process and really helped me find the heart beat of TAMH. I went to him for this purpose because Kevin has a sixth sense of story structure and character development. Thanks Kevin for helping me tell Kirkland’s story in a poetic way.
Chris Campbell for all his long nights and dedication to the finishing of this film. What an incredible job with sound design and coming in the fourth quarter and scoring this last minute touchdown. What a hard worker. Thanks for your patience Chris!
I’d also like to thank Kathleen Warren and the Warren family for all their encouragement and patience with me. I always felt they were behind me 100%. It is my prayer that I can repay their hospitality one day. I aspire to our level of dedication to family and friends.
Lastly, I’d like to thank my wonderful wife Lizzie. The queen of patience and the love of my life. I could not have made this film without her sacrifice and patience regarding my time and energy.
There are so many others I could thank and I promise I will get around to it!