The Raiders Guys:
In 1982, in Ocean Springs, Mississippi, Chris Strompolos, eleven, asked Eric Zala, twelve, a question:
“Would you like to help me do a remake of RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK? I’m playing Indiana Jones.”
And they did it. Every shot, every line of dialogue, every stunt.
They borrowed and collected costumes; convinced neighborhood kids to wear grass skirts and play natives; cast a fifteen-year-old as Indy’s love interest; rounded up seven thousand snakes (sort of); built the Ark, the idol, the huge boulder; found a desert in Mississippi; and melted the bad guys’ faces off.
It took seven years.
Along the way, Chris had his first kiss (on camera), they nearly burned down the house and incinerated Eric, lived through parents getting divorced and remarried, and watched their friendship disintegrate.
This is the incredible true story of the Raiders Guys, how they realized their impossible dream of remaking RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK, and how their friendship survived all challenges, from betrayal over a girl… to reuniting twenty-five years later to get the missing scene they couldn’t get as kids, the Airplane Scene.
Perhaps because it does not bear the sophisticated, self-consciousness of adulthood, their film, RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK: THE ADAPTATION — the ultimate Do-It-Yourself success story—has deeply moved just about everyone who has seen it. The magic of this film is in its purity, in its authentic belief in the medium. It is a time machine that takes one back to a moment in life when everything is still possible; when friendship is something to be shared and not feared; when there is no “audience” except the one in the heart—the one that eats up everything that is good and true and powerful.
The story is of childhood obsessions, and friendships that have been tested, broken and strengthened. It is about being a teenager fraught with challenges, and how to overcome them. The story is a testament to the transcendental power of youth, art and the movies.