Aug. 12, 2019
Kristina Smith
Marketing Committee chairman
American Presidents Film & Literary Festival
Fremont, OH 43420
800-998-7737, ext. 217


Short film on Lyndon Johnson’s ‘October Surprise’ to be shown at film, literary festival

FREMONT, Ohio – A film about a sex scandal that rocked President Lyndon Johnson’s re-election bid in 1964 will be shown this fall at the American Presidents Film & Literary Festival.

“The Original October Surprise,” directed by Scott Calonico, is a one of the short films that will be featured at the festival Friday, Oct. 4 – Sunday, Oct. 6, at various locations in Fremont.

A schedule of show times and tickets will be available at

“The Original October Surprise” examines the first “October Surprise,” a sex scandal involving Johnson’s closest aide and how it affected Johnson’s re-election campaign.

An October Surprise is a scandal that, whether by design or chance, threatens to destroy a presidential candidate with just weeks to go until Election Day.

Every election year, political operatives wait with bated breath – and journalists with a touch of morbid fascination – for this scandal. This started when Johnson was running for his second term against Barry Goldwater in a tough campaign.

            This film will be shown during the short film block throughout the weekend at The Strand Concert Theater in downtown Fremont. The block will include five other short films with run times ranging from 7 and a half minutes to 28 minutes.

            Each of the films selected for this festival have some connection to the American presidency and touch in some way, directly or loosely, on the themes of people, places, politics and power.

            Awards will be given for the best feature-length film, best short film, best production and people’s choice. Attendees can vote for their favorite film through the people’s choice contest. Ballot boxes will be located at each theater.

The American Presidents Film & Literary Festival is the only film and literary festival in the United States to focus on the American presidency. It will take place at The Strand Concert Theater, Fremont Middle School, the Hayes Presidential Library & Museums, Birchard Public Library and Live Edge Center.

In addition to films, the festival includes a cooking class with a former White House chef, talks by authors and historians, an escape room geared toward teens, lantern tours of the Hayes Presidential Library & Museums’ grounds with living history presenters, a red carpet event with a keynote talk about Adrian Miller, author of “The President’s Kitchen Cabinet” and more.

The American Presidents Film & Literary Festival is organized by the Liberty and Learning Foundation, Fremont City Schools, Birchard Public Library, Hayes Presidential Library & Museums and Downtown Fremont.

The festival is committed to providing a place for expanded national and international understanding of the history and current events that have and continue to shape and influence the President of the United States. Utilizing the site and community of America’s first presidential library and museum, filmmakers, film professionals and authors will inspire audiences to explore, understand, critique and analyze the people, places, politics and power surrounding the American Presidency.

For information, visit and follow on Facebook and Twitter at @ampresfilmlit.