AN UNLIKELY WEAPON: The Eddie Adams Story (2009). This exceptional documentary about the life of an award-winning photographer premieres this week in Denver at the Starz FilmCenter, July 3-9. Go to http://www.anunlikelyweapon.com for times and directions. Opening nationwide throughout the summer.
Legendary photographer Eddie Adams, famously seen lurking in war zones, at celebrity shoots, and on the streets of New York, photographed 13 wars, six US presidents and every major film star in the last 50 years. His career and reputation exploded into world renown when, in Vietnam in 1968, Eddie shot what is considered by many to be the definitive war photograph: General Loan, the Saigon police chief shooting a Vietcong prisoner point-blank in the head. “Saigon Execution” won Eddie a Pulitzer Prize and was credited with changing public opinion to help end the Vietnam War.
Eddie was a guy who lived hard and played harder. Enormously ambitious and driven, rough talking, notoriously dissatisfied with his achievements, he documented the plight of refugees around the world, jumped aboard a boat load of Vietnamese headed out to sea with only some rice and a few hundred dollars worth of gasoline, and faced off Fidel Castro until the two went on an unlikely duck hunting trip together, among other risky ventures. In this documentary, journalists such as Tom Brokaw, Peter Jennings, and Morley Safer speak about Eddie with a measure of awe and respect. As Safer says, “Eddie was not your typical sedate, thoughtful photographer . . . He looked for trouble both on and off the job.”
Later in life Eddie turned to photographing celebrities, resulting in stunning and unique shots, signatures of his skill and experienced eye for the money shot. There were many sides to this talented man: war photographer, human rights activist, teacher, competitive and aggressive artist; most of all, he was deeply human and fully engaged in life.
SUSAN MORGAN COOPER is the brilliant filmmaker who produced this exceptional documentary. The road to its completion was long and not always smooth—but she had promised Eddie, and she kept that promise, in spades. This is a DO NOT MISS film!
-- Rosemary Carstens