The Patriot: The Lost Scene

The Patriot: Historically accurate or patriotic bullshit?

The Patriot: Historically accurate or patriotic bullshit?

In 2000, Mel Gibson’s nationalistic nod to America, a film known as The Patriot, hit pay dirt at the box office.  Nothing says American patriotism more than casting two Australian actors as the lead characters in an American film, especially one who is an anti-Semitic  sexist.  Unbeknownst to many, the historian who had originally penned the screenplay had a very different vision of the American Revolution, but ultimately saw his brilliant screenplay cut to shreds by Hollywood executives who aimed to make the film more appealing and easier to digest for the general American audience. Here however, we have uncovered one of the scenes that were cut from the original screenplay.  Enjoy:

Benjamin Martin is speaking to a crowd at a Rally in town, trying to rouse support for the American cause.

Ben: I say to hell with taxation without representation!

Mob: YEAH!

Ben: I say if the elite who live on that island across the ocean want our money, they can come and take it from us by force.

Mob: YEAH!

Ben: Down with the stamp tax!

Mob: YEAH!!

Poor white guy in the front: What’s a stamp tax?  I ain’t ne’er heard of dat befoe?

Ben: Don’t worry about that kind sir, it is a tax we wealthier folks have to pay, and trust me, it is a hassle for us all.  What I propose is freedom.  FREEDOM!

Mob: YEAH!

Ben: Freedom for everybody.

Mob: YEAH!

Native North American: Yes, this seems the best way.  Then we can all live in harmony and my people can return to their ways.

Ben:  Well, I wasn’t talking about the Indian folk, we actually still have to conquer some of you guys and then assimilate whoever is left.  But we’ll be happy to take some of your women!  Now, everybody else, are you with me?  FREEDOM FOR ALL!!!!

Black guy: YEAH!  Freedom for everybody!

Ben: Well, except for you coloured people.  Blackies don’t get freedom.  If they did, my farm would have to pay for labour, and then I’d make no money.  So what I should say is: Freedom for Whites!

Mob (slightly quieter): Yeah!

White woman in the front: Yes, freedom for all white people, men and women alike.

Ben: Whoa, now, I didn’t mean women too.  I just meant men.  What I should say is: Freedom for all White men!

Mob (not so loud at all now): Yeah.

Different White guy: Yeah.  Universal male suffrage! All white males get the vote!

Ben: Whoa now, I don’t think I was quite clear in what I was saying.  What I should have said was: Freedom for all landing-owning white males.  Alright now, lets hear those cheers!

Mob: Boo!

Ben: Come on folks, everybody is behind the cause.  Everybody wants a free and independent America that is broken from the shackles of the despotic island across the Atlantic.

Business man near the front: Actually, I read in the newspaper that the ‘Revolutionary Way’ only has a thirty percent approval rating and that seventy percent of the nation doesn’t want to sever ties with Great Britain.

Ben (waving his musket in the air): Who cares about the majority?  What matters is what the landed gentry want.  We have the money, and we have the guns, so who’s gonna stand up to my musket?

At this point the mob starts to break up with quiet boos and hissing.

Ben: Thanks so much for your support. Now lets go out there and stop those autocratic Englishmen from taxing your very own dictatorial rulers!

End of Scene

When George Washington fought for freedom, he fought for the freedom to own and whip men like this.  Freedom?  Isn't that tyranny?  Despotism?

When George Washington fought for freedom, he fought for the freedom to own and whip men like this. Freedom? Isn’t that tyranny? Despotism?

Sadly these are the only two pages remaining of the original screenplay, but as you can see the original vision for the movie was slightly different than the  nationalistic propaganda that made it to the silver screen.  The screenwriter of this original screenplay has just finished a new script that was to be titled: Defender of Freedom; The Nat Turner Story.  However, this film’s production has temporarily been postponed while the script is being revised with the new working title: Nat Turner: Baby Killer, which is due out sometime next fall.

Native Americans: When Thomas Jefferson said "All men are created equal." he didn't mean to include these men.

Native Americans: When Thomas Jefferson said “All men are created equal.” he didn’t mean to include these men.

Rambler About Rambler

Jason John Horn is a writer and critic who recently completed his Master's in English Literature at the University of Windsor. He has composed a play, a novella and a number of short stories and satirical essays.

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