Freemason, mystery and service are three words that go together. Yet the rites and responsibilities of Freemasonry have long been shrouded in secrecy. Small wonder that “The Freemason I,” an independently produced movie starring Sean Astin as Leon Weed, enjoyed considerable success.
“The Freemason I” is a fictional account of the ritualistic killing of prominent Freemasons – in particular, a prominent banker whose daughter, Rana Burkhalter hires freelance writer Cyrus Rothwell to investigate the murder. This brings him into contact with Leon Weed, the homicide detective who is handling the case. As the plot thickens, millions of dollars hangs in the balance, murders continue and a mysterious killer seeks a relic that has been lost for hundreds of years.
“The Freemason II” takes up where the first film left off, with even more excitement, mystery and intrigue. It is subtitled, “The Retaliation.” Like “The Freemason I,” it reveals some of the initiation rituals and other aspects of Freemasonry not often available for viewing.
One thing that makes these movies so interesting is that they recount those parts of the Masonic rite that are allowable as public knowledge. With so many conflicting accounts of what goes on in a Masonic Ritual and the aspersions on the goals and aspirations of the organizations that operate as Masonic Temples, it is a breath of fresh air for a qualified member to reveal some of the general workings. Even with this basis in real practices, it should be remembered that “The Freemason I” is a work of fiction and that the events are not real.
As the executive producer, Joseph James has struck a careful balance between the knowable and the unknowable to inform people who are not familiar with the Rites and to shield the quiet inner workings. Audience response to “The Freemason I” has been very positive. It has been shown to many Lodges and has been instrumental in bringing people together, as well as money from the showings that has raised a respectable amount of money for charity. In addition, many people have expressed an interest in taking part in “The Freemason II.”
As a result, Joseph James has incorporated the option to have a role – speaking or non-speaking – as a reward for the Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign. Other rewards include a phone call from the producers, a DVD of “The Freemason I,” a copy of the DVD for “The Freemason II,” an apprentice patron package, advertising for your brand on associated products, film screenings and being featured as a producer. If none of the standard offers meet your tastes, you can “select your own reward” by making an offer and negotiating for it.
James has produced three feature films about Freemasonry and the Knights Templar. He wanted to show the many interesting and positive things that Freemasonry has done, to counteract the many negative accounts that have been circulated. An example of the positives of the Masonic organizations are the Shriners. They are responsible for raising large sums of money each year for charitable causes – such as the Shriner’s Children’s Hospitals.
If you wish to take part in “The Freemason II,” you have a sixty day window in which to make your contribution and put in your request to take part. As mentioned while discussing the rewards, you can sign up for a speaking or non-speaking role. There are, of course, different sorts of speaking roles as well. Content ranges from one-liners to actual interaction with the named players.
On the other hand, you do not have to stand up and be counted in order to contribute. You do not even have to accept a perk. All you have to do is to select “donate anonymously” and select “no perks”. If you aren’t able to contribute financially to this endeavour, the makers will be grateful for all assistance in spreading the word.