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Chancellor and Student Produce Video Series on Constitution

September 15th, 2011

By Sarah Pride, photo by Art Cox

CONTACT:  David Halbrook
Patrick Henry College
(540) 441-8722

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View Episode 1 for free - Introduction to the Constitution from Ian A. Reid on Vimeo.


Official Series Poster

Patrick Henry College senior Ian Reid plans one day to launch a production and distribution studio that “creates fantastic stories while presenting truth.” That studio would produce documentaries, animated features, special effects, web content, and more. To this end, Reid has placed himself on a fast-track to acquire a multilayered skillset, encompassing an in-depth and hands-on knowledge of both business and art, required of such an enterprise. That track has led Reid into an enormous summer video production project, assisting PHC Chancellor Dr. Michael Farris with the creation of a new Constitutional Literacy video series (see trailer below).

With the video series in its final, feverish stages of production, Reid has already made an admirer of the College’s chancellor and founder.

“Ian’s video production is something between ‘utterly fantastic’ and ‘beyond all imagination,’” notes Dr. Farris. “He could make it seem interesting and look great if I was reading a phone book.”

When he and others founded the College in 2000, Dr. Farris took care to institute a Constitutional Law class both as part of PHC’s fundamental core values and as a mandatory course for students in every major. As he does in each ConLaw class he teaches, Dr. Farris will explain in the upcoming video series what every American must know in order to fulfill his duties as a citizen. This includes understanding what the Constitution itself says, as well as what the people who wrote it intended when they ratified its various provisions. Finally, students will learn what the Supreme Court has said since about the Constitution.

“When you compare the original meaning of the Constitution to the decisions of the Supreme Court and the current practices of Congress and the White House, it is obvious that there is a huge discrepancy,” Dr. Farris explains.

Ian Reid behind the editing desk

A PHC journalism major, Reid’s previous filmmaking experience includes two years of apprenticeship work with Advent Film Group on feature films produced by local filmmaker George Escobar, as well as a stint as a production assistant on a National Geographic documentary. Last fall, he launched his own company, Distant Moon Media, and began production on an apologetics course for Ethos Publications, a company run by PHC alumnus Isaiah McPeak. This and another project to teach debate have helped hone Reid’s technical skills to include lighting and editing, he says—things that “could be bland or boring, but are essential.”

The Constitutional literacy series with Dr. Farris touches on an issue that Reid believes in personally. “Congress is pushing its bounds every year, and the Supreme Court either allows it or tries to institute its own legislation,” he explains. “It is worrisome to see where the government is.”

He hopes the videos will help the average American learn how to “lobby government people more effectively.” It is aimed to create action, he says: “This is not just a video series you watch once. Watch them a few times; share them with others; join a movement and stand up alongside others.”

Dr. Farris says that the videos will educate in an entertaining manner, thanks to Reid’s production skills.

“I am only on screen for about a quarter of each video,” he relates. “Ian keeps the visuals moving with photos of the people featured in the (court) cases, maps, timelines, and a host of modern imagery that is just amazingly cool. People who have seen either the trailer or any of the preliminary versions have been blown away.”

These videos are available for pre-order now and are due for release on DVD on September 15, 2011. Meanwhile, in addition to the free episode above, you can view the official trailer below.


Constitutional Literacy with Michael Farris from Distant Moon Media on Vimeo.