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  Port Chicago Mutiny--Thoughts on the Production


This is the second film done by Warriors Inc. that has racial prejudice in the World War II American military as its theme. It's also another example of our willingness to expose the warts when it comes to military history. It was also our second shot at a purely Navy story that demonstrated if it involves the military, Warriors Inc. can handle the job and help make a production better.

One of the most interesting aspects of training for this mission was the Stand Down or teaching period that followed training every day. I found myself - a white guy born during the time of racial segregation - having to explain the social situation in America during World War II to a group of young black Americans. I think it was fruitful and insightful...for me and for them. It certainly led to a change in the attitudes the actors brought to their portrayals.

Director Kevin Hooks happily cast me as the salty Navy Chief Petty Officer who greets the black recruits as they climb off the bus for basic training. I had to dredge up some old racial stereotypes for that role but Kevin told me not to hold back. It was a good acting experience. The film didn't draw much attention when it was released on network television, but I think it will stand the test of time as an accurate historical depiction.