Be sure to check out my recent interview:
My family takes a bi-yearly week long vacation at Christmas in Orlando, Florida. This gave me the opportunity to set up a visit to chat with Don for Deepstage. The interview took place last Christmas Eve in Don’s office at the
Drag Racing Museum in Ocala, Florida. It was awesome spending time in Don’s office, a nicely appointed place with wood paneling, a big desk and lots of wood framed chairs with the brass tacks holding the green upholstery. There’s so much paraphernalia around the office having to do with lots more than drag racing that it would take a 15 minute video pan to describe the various interesting pictures and souvenirs. The percentage of UFO related stuff is significant. I’ve talked with Don two times before, so the “Holy-Mackerel- I’m-talking-with-my-hero-of-40-years” factor is under control, and its more like I’m just talking to another car guy, albeit the Lord God King Boofu of all car guys. I did keep looking around telling myself over and over “I’ve got to remember everything I’m seeing in this office!” Shoulda’ taken some pics, but I didn’t want to “go tourist” with Don there. The interview begins with a question to Don about his 2004 plans.
If the upcoming movie is a blockbuster, it could be the turning point for the public acceptance of drag racing most of us have been hoping for for decades. And with Don’s wit and wisdom, I don’t think we’ll have to worry about an Ocala Neverland Ranch or 2 gallon banana splits at the Garlits house any time soon. My one closing thought is if they could get Ron Howard to direct, the movie will indeed reach the mass audience Big Daddy and the sport of drag racing deserves. Ron Howard has a fantastic track record with portraying amazingly heroic and under publicized American events, Apollo 13, for example. Cars have been a significant part of many of his movies – American Graffiti and Parenthood come immediately to mind. I think he’d do a great Oscar winning job in telling Big’s story to the world and Big would get a fitting tribute to an incredible life, rich in the spirit that pioneered America and made it the great country it is today.