History is not what you think...
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Photo Courtesy of Earle Kimel
Austin Graham To Appear in the Film
Austin Graham isn't as famous yet as her 14th Great Great Grandfather Juan Ponce de Leon but just give her some time. She is an actress and model who lives in Florida. Her grandmother spent much of her life documenting the family's lineage. Her mother worked with a professor of Spanish paleography to complete her family tree. Biographers of Juan Ponce de Leon repeatedly mention his penchant for leadership, his sincerity and his facility for dealing with others. Whether you call it je ne sais quoi or charisma, it's obvious that this young lady has it. Austin will be appearing in the film as Frangiemiel Malgarejo, an architect who is restoring the old Church in San Juan Puerto Rico.
The 4th Letter of Ponce de Leon is an exciting new indie film project currently in development in Naples, FL. Naples is a tropical town located on the Gulf of Mexico in SW Florida.The story is based on certain aspects of the discoveries of the legendary Juan Ponce de Leon in the New World during the early 1500's. It is an original story written by Richard Watts.
It is well-documented that during his exploration of the New World Ponce de Leon wrote letters or official communications to the Spanish Crown. Although there is dispute about the exact number some believe that he wrote four letters and that the fourth one, despite years of searching, has never been found. Our film begins when a young girl, Orchid Lancaster, stumbles upon a small chest that washed up on the beach in Naples, FL. The chest contains the fourth letter and some remarkable contents that were originally sent to the Spanish Crown in 1522. The letter is determined to be authentic, written by Ponce de Leon and sent from the southwest coast of Florida (La Florida). The troubling aspect is that the letter is dated 1522; Historical records indicate that Ponce de Leon died in Cuba in the Summer of 1521 as a result of wounds sustained in a battle with the Calusa Indians somewhere on the southwest Florida coast.
Orchid's father, Rye Lancaster is baffled by the apparent inconsistency and, using his inquisitive novelist's mind, he sets out on an adventure to find an explanation.
As he discovers more details about the famed explorer's landing in 1521 it becomes apparent that a crucial and almost unbelievable misinterpretation of history has remained a secret for over 500 years. It is a piece of antique gold jewelry worn by a socialite that confirms his suspicions.
The film is expected to be shot on location in Southwest Florida and will showcase some of the state's most beautiful beaches. Parts of the film feature Spanish Conquistadors, the mercenaries of the 16th century. Many viewers will be introduced to the Calusa indian culture which flourished in the area at the time of this Spanish colonization.
Although aspects of the film are based on historical events the film is a work of fiction. The story and screenplay were written by Richard Watts. The anticipated release date is Fall 2020.
Juan Ponce de Leon