Thursday, June 11, 2009

Misc and myth-ellaneous

Yesterday I learned, quite by accident, that I made my film debut. The movie is Mormon Myth-ellaneous, which played at the LDS Film Festival this year.

Cast: Shawn Rapier, Dixie Johnson, Richard Holzapfel, Eric Eliason, Paul Skousen, Quint Randle, Chris Bigelow, Richard Bushman, Deacon Scott Dodge, Jerry Borrowman, Ken Baldridge.

Synopsis: Did Elvis read the Book of Mormon? Why are the Three Nephites always hitch-hiking? Are whales living in the Great Salt Lake? Was Yoda really based on a Mormon Prophet? Elevator shafts in the Salt Lake Temple? Underground tunnels at Temple Square? A swearing Apostle? Take a comical jaunt to unlock the hidden mysteries of Mormon urban legends, faith-promoting rumors, and curious facts and fallacies. Hang on tight and enjoy a fast-paced, fun ride and who knows, you may even learn a little something.

I think it was back in 2007 that I was contacted by one of the film's directors, who wanted to ask a few questions. After a couple of phone conversations, we met in person and did a preliminary interview. Finally, using the dining room of the Cathedral rectory as our setting, we filmed. I thought the shoot went well enough. I never heard anything back from anyone associated with the film. I concluded that maybe it never made it out of editing, or whatever. Now I feel compelled to purchase a DvD and watch it. It was fun working with the directors and small crew.

Below is a clip from the film. There is a second clip, too.

Being a native Utahn, all of this is familiar to me. I also remember the myth that Stevie Nicks was LDS and Alice Cooper, too. I was 11 years old when Star Wars was released in 1977. It was the first movie I saw twice in the theater. It was also the first movie I saw on video tape- a top-loading beta-max machine. It was very easy to equate the Force with the LDS understanding of priesthood, which is the preeminent force in the universe, pre-existing even God the Father, "who has a body of flesh and bones as tangible as man's," and the power used by God to exercise dominion over his realm (Doctrine & Covenants 130:22). I also remember developing quite a crush on Carrie Fisher, who was lovely as Princess Leah, a far cry from the ugly sister in the story of Jacob's quest to marry Rachel in Genesis 29.

We are continuing to make our way through Big Love. Rebecca was right, it grows to be quite compelling, despite some large gaps in the story.


  1. The things I missed out on by not growing up here - I've heard about the Three Nephites and the tunnels under Temple Square (a friend's father used to sing in the Tabernacle Choir, and he swears it's true and that they have rehearsal rooms down there, but then he's been known to exaggerate things just a bit) but I'd never heard the one about the whales! Is there some sort of underlying moral or message to the whales-in-the-lake story or is it just a random thing?

    The movie sounds really interesting - I'll have to see if I can grab a copy at the library. I also hope that Dan Brown never, ever hears about it - imagine what he could do with that material :).

  2. The LDS loved The Da Vinci Code. Late one night on KBYU there was a program that sought to verify what the LDS believe about Jesus (i.e., that he was married, etc.) by Brown's fiction.

    The whales are just random things.

  3. I've been in those tunnels. The "brethren" use golf carts to to get around underground. I never saw any whales though. Darn it.

    Big Love rocks, in a really dysfunctional sort of way.

  4. If you like Mormon urban legends, check out