Among the things "faked" for FORREST GUMP were the door in the stand-in-
the-schoolhouse-door, the University of Alabama stadium and band, Bear
Bryant, and all things related to the University of Alabama.
Because the University refused to give Paramount rights to the names or
permission to shoot on campus here in Tuscaloosa.
As reported in today's TUSCALOOSA NEWS:
"...once the UA administration got a peek at one of the early FORREST GUMP
scripts uneasiness took hold in Rose Administration [building] and it fell
[executive assistant to the President, Cully] Clark's duty to write
Paramount, express the University's objections to certain characterizations
and historical distortions, and respectfully say thanks, but no thanks to
request to film on location here."
Author Winston Groom (UA class of 1965) commented, "'The University is
[irritated] and I don't blame them,' but said that 'as a member of the
Alabama Film Commission' he was 'personally embarrassed' his story would be
filmed mostly in Beauford, SC, and Savannah, GA."
And, I would add, it is personally annoying to me that my students didn't
get the opportunity to observe/participate in a major film production.
Clark explained that some of the inacurracies included:
1. Students were not permitted near the confrontation between Wallace and
the Feds when Vivian Malone registered. Thus, FG could not have handed her
the book she drops in the film.
2. Clark, who has written a well-respected and researched book titled _The
Schoolhouse Door_, added, "...the movie portrays Forrest Gump as this sort
of benign idiot who has all the right moral instincts, in contrast to the
students who are porrayed as ignorant and racist. That just wasn't the
case--the student body very much opposed Wallace and wanted to see peaceful
integration of the University."
And so another battle of representation is fought...
Jeremy Butler [log in to unmask]
Associate Professor [log in to unmask]
Telecommunication & Film Dept. * University of Alabama * Tuscaloosa