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Volume 3110

Tarzan: Lord of the Louisiana Jungle
The Trailer

Several years ago, I was having breakfast with a group of men at a hotel in South Louisiana.  Seemingly out of the blue, one of the men said that he had lived in Morgan City, LA for a while and that this little town on the coast of Louisiana was where the first Tarzan movie was made in 1918.  This grabbed my attention because as a child I had loved the Tarzan movies on television and at the movies.   But, I became hooked into the story when he said that for the production, live apes and monkeys were brought in to add realism to the silent motion picture.  When the production finished, the monkeys would not get back into the cages so they were left behind.  The question of whether there were monkeys or apes still living in the jungle swamps around the Atchafalaya River basin ate at me for a long time.

One night while killing time on the internet, I wondered if there was any information available to answer the monkey question.  Naturally, when you do a web search for anything about Tarzan, you immediately go to a website hosted by Bill Hillman.  Through www.erbzine.com I found a wealth of information about the 1918 silent motion picture "Tarzan of the Apes."  I was pleasantly surprised by the treasure chest of history that surrounded that film.

Several things came together to encourage me to decide to spend my time and money to produce a documentary film about that old film.  First, for a number of years I had written or illustrated or designed covers for a lot of books for various publishers (see www.albohl.com.) One of the books is a high school or college age textbook that teaches how to learn every form of cartooning imaginable and how to find work in the area of cartooning anyone might be interested in.  That book is called Guide to Cartooning.  One of the numerous concepts for a book or animated TV series I came up with was entitled "Tales from the Bayou."  It is a series of morality-based stories for children similar in feel to Chandler’s "Uncle Remus" or Disney's "Song of the South."  One of my principle characters was a monkey named Mon-kay who was thought to have been a descendant of the monkeys left behind by the Tarzan movie.

Guide To Cartooning is a high school and college textbook that is a complete cartooning course in one book.
Guide To Cartooning 
is a high school and college textbook 
that is a complete cartooning course in one book.

Mon-kay is one of the main characters 
for the book and animated TV show concept 
created by Al Bohl.

The next thing that happened was that through an aggressive tax incentive program that the state of Louisiana put together, the movie industry converged on the state.  Well over 100 movies have been shot all over the state and more are on the way.  Not only was the 1918 Tarzan movie the first feature film shot in my state but as far as I have been able to access from my research, it was the first feature film shot on location in the U.S.A.  The industry had come full circle.

Finally, my daughter Allison entered the school of visual arts at the University of Louisiana in Lafayette.  She blossomed into a tremendous filmmaker by the time she graduated.  In 2007, Allison, Connie Castille and Charles Richard who make up the Cinematic Arts Workshop at ULL were named Louisiana's Filmmakers of the Year for their film "I Always Do My Collars First."  It tells the story of the domestic lives of four Cajun women.  Their second documentary about Cajun living entitled "Raised on Rice and Gravy" won best short documentary of the year at the 2009 New Orleans Film Festival.  Since graduating from college Allison has been involved with a whirlwind of film and photographic projects.  When I told her of my idea to produce this Tarzan offering, she signed on with all her heart.   Words can't express the joy I feel being able to work along-side her on this project.

Why These Updates

From the moment we decided to make this documentary about Tarzan a reality, I have found people everywhere who are interested in this project.  I sent just one or two emails to people like Bill Hillman and suddenly I had a lot of Tarzan fans writing to encourage me.   Dick Spargur allowed me the privilege of showing a little of our rough footage we had amassed for the documentary at the 2009 Dum-Dum Convention in Dayton, Ohio this past summer.

A big part of the fun of sharing the vision was the stories about the people we'd met and the places we had been.  I have always loved watching the behind-the-scenes special features of DVD movies and so I decided it would be fun to tell the story-within-the-story and introduce to you the wonder and colorful experiences we have encountered in this adventure of producing Tarzan: Lord of the Louisiana Jungle.

I greatly appreciate the generosity of Bill and Sue-On Hillman for making it possible to bring these stories to you.

1. Splash
2.  Meet Jerry Dupree from New Orleans
3. Meet Jeffrey Goodman
4. The Boat of Cypress
5. The Audubon Zoo
6. African American Connection and the Avoca Island Ferry
7. What is an “Executive Producer?”
8. California, There We Came
9. George McWhorter
10. Me, Tar-Fan
11. Black Manhood and the Silent Screen
12. The View From Above
13. The Trailer: Debut
14. On the Road - Again
15. Tarzan Takes Me to the Louisiana State Capitol
16. Deadlines, Festival, Exhibition and more!
17. An Appeal to All Tarzan Collectors:
Be a Part of The Morgan City Tarzan Festival


bio | portfolio | current projects

Award Winning Film
. .

ERBzine Spotlight on Al Bohl

Dayton Convention Presentation
View the Trailer for
Allison Bohl's latest documentary

King Crawfish
View the Trailer from
the soon-to-be released:

Tarzan: Lord of the Louisiana Jungle
A Unique Tarzan Collectible from Al Bohl
Thus far all the funding for the Tarzan: Lord of the Louisiana Jungle project has come from my own pocket. Also, my daughter Allison has donated her time and talent to help make this project possible. I am waiting to hear from several grants I have applied for and further down the road I will be looking for corporate sponsorship. 

I am not stopping the production while waiting to hear from the grants. There are several things which I am doing that need an additional infusion of funds at this time. Just three examples are the purchase of historic archival photos and footage along with some fees to enter into film festivals and the cost of producing all original music for the documentary and a new improved version of the original motion picture “Tarzan of the Apes.”

I have produced a 24” x 36” full color "Tarzan: Lord of the Louisiana Jungle" poster suitable for framing. It is printed on fine gloss poster paper. I am only printing 250 posters. Each will be numbered and signed by me. Numbers 11-250 are available for $25 each. This includes FREE shipping and handling. Also, your name will be listed in the end credits of the DVD presentation as a sponsor who made this documentary possible. 

~ Al Bohl
Full ordering information is displayed at:
Tarzan: Lord of the Louisiana Jungle HERE



2. Arrival

Morgan City Preparations
3. LA State Capitol

Tarzan Day Declared
4. Cajun Jack Adventure

Swamp and Bayou Safari
5. Swamps and Alligators

To 1917 Tarzan Film Locations
6. Gala Reception

Lt. Gov. Keys to the City
7. Cajun Food Experience

Jambalaya Crawfish Pie & Filet Gumbo
8. Tarzan Display I

Info Boards and Walls
9. Tarzan Display II

Memorabilia and Collectibles
10. Festival Day

Contests | Films
11. On the Road

End of a 5,000-mile Journey
12. Cajun Songbook

Kershaw | Orbison | Bohl | Hillmans
13. Tarzan Project Story

Al Bohl Progress Articles

Click for full-size preview collages

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