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New film on Alexander Hamilton to premiere at NJHS


The New Jersey Historical Society will premiere “Favorite Son,” a film that offers an in-depth and tantalizing exploration into the life of visionary Alexander Hamilton, America’s first secretary of the treasury, on Saturday, September 13, 2003 at 1 p.m. at 52 Park Place, Newark, NJ 07102. Admission is free and open to the public.

Set against Manhattan’s towering skyline, “Favorite Son” challenges traditional documentary form by using fictional characters to tell not-so-familiar stories about Alexander Hamilton, according to Michael Bober, writer, producer, and director of the film.

Best known for his placement on the $10 bill and his duel with fellow New Jerseyan Aaron Burr, Hamilton and his legacy are far less familiar than historical counterparts George Washington and Thomas Jefferson. Bober’s interest in Hamilton began years ago when he read the epic poem, Paterson, and the book In the American Grain, both by Rutherford, NJ-born poet William Carlos Williams. Both works explore industry’s influence in the shaping of America, a concept that transfixed Bober, a Paterson, NJ native, who in turn became enchanted with Hamilton’s vision of a world dominated and driven by industry.

“Hamilton was a very prominent historical figure in Paterson. Yet, he has been misunderstood,” said Bober, who has worked in the film industry for 20 years. “Republicans tend to claim him because of his emphasis upon business and finance, but on the other hand, he was a strong supporter of federal government – he didn’t think states should exist. His ideas were in great conflict with Thomas Jefferson, but now Jefferson’s ideas seem antiquated, while Hamilton’s ideas were about what America would eventually become.”

Interspersed with historical dramatizations and contemporary scenes, the film centers on Nyla, a fictional television reporter assigned a piece on Hamilton/Burr duel, played by actress Julia Lowe Walker.
The 81-minute film also stars Jesse Pennington as Alexander Hamilton, Michael Emerson, Art Hansen and Peter Holland. Film credits include Director of Photography Doron Schlair, Editor Mike Johnson, and Co-producer Peter Holland.

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