There was plenty of potential risk involved for the leadership of the Texas American Legion Boys State program when filmmakers Jesse Moss and Amanda McBaine pitched a documentary about the program in late 2017.
“The downside to letting in an outsider is that you have to provide a lot of context to explain what’s happening, especially for a fast-paced, condensed, complex program like Boys State that has so many decades of history,” said Daren Brabham, Texas Boys State’s assistant director of media relations. “There was a risk the filmmakers wouldn’t really get it and wouldn’t ultimately tell the story in a clear or fair way.”
But “Boys State,” the documentary McBaine and Moss directed and produced, turned out to be a positive experience.
The film, which won the Grand Jury Prize at January’s Sundance Film Festival, is coming to selected theaters on July 31 and Apple TV+ on Aug. 14. Filmed during the 2018 Texas Boys State session, the documentary follows four “statesmen” — Steven Garza, Robert MacDougal, Ben Feinstein, and Rene Otero — through the week.
McBaine and Moss found Feinstein, Garza and MacDougal through preliminary interviews before the program, and were drawn to Otero after seeing his campaign speech to become […]
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