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phil robertson in duck hunting gear in the film the blind
Mar 19, 2024 12:59:28 PM

Behind the Scenes of 'The Blind' with the Robertson Family

There’s no doubt that the creation and filming of the movie “The Blind” was an emotional journey for the entire Robertson family. Many of them were involved in the movie’s production, including Korie Roberston, wife of Willie Robertson and Phil’s daughter-in-law as a producer; Willie Robertson, Phil’s son, as an executive producer and Zach Dasher, Phil’s nephew.

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After the movie was filmed, producers Korie, Zach and Cole Prine sat down to give a behind-the-scenes look at some of their favorite and most important scenes to film for “The Blind.”

Want more behind the scenes content of 'The Blind'? Get to know the Robertson family even more right here on Great American Pure Flix.

Phil and Kay’s First Date

During the film, we learn not only how Phil and Kay first met, but we also follow them on their first date (with a special appearance by Phil’s brother Si). Their first date took place at a family-owned local restaurant Fertitta’s, which is still in business today.

“I love that because that place has been there for years and [is] still operating, and it looks exactly like it looked,” said producer Zach Dasher.

The movie’s production was able to add back a little movie magic to the restaurant: they fixed their neon sign that hasn’t worked in 20 years.

Both the owner and her son was there when the crew filmed the first date scene, as they watched from behind the monitor with producer Cole Prine.

“When Kay orders a Muffy, she just started crying, and it was just the sweetest moment, and she was like, ‘You know, my husband started this so many years ago, and just like it’s going to be preserved forever now,’” Prine said.

phil and kay young and dating the blind

Si also spoke about how he ended up being with Phil and Kay on their first date.

“I've been with them in the beginning. Phil come home one Friday and said, ‘hey I got a date tonight’ and the first words out of Mama's mouth was, ‘hey you're taking side with you,’ Si described, giving context to not only how he ended up there but why Kay simply calls him ‘brother’ and not ‘brother-in-law.’

Phil’s Baptism

Phil’s baptism scene in “The Blind” was definitely one of the more challenging scenes to not only shoot and get the right angles but also for the actors as well.

The actor who plays Phil, Aron von Andrian, was hesitant to get into the swampy water because of the layer of mud that was underneath its surface. Not only that, but his 6 foot 2 height proved to be a challenge for John Ales, who plays Pastor Bill, at only 5 foot 8, to dunk under the water and come back up without falling.

Read Also: Sadie Roberston Huff Shares the Power of Understanding Who God Is

“They get in the water for the baptism, and it’s this beautiful scene, and they weren’t deep enough in the water,” Dasher explained. “So the pastor was baptizing someone who’s a lot bigger than him…and he can’t get him back up…Then they start stumbling and falling and they’re literally trying to get up, they keep falling back down because they’re sinking in the mud.”

Dasher decided they needed a “clean down and up” shot, so they reshot the scene. And though you can’t tell in the film it’s actually Zach who is baptizing Aaron in the close up shot of the scene.

child phil redemption moment the blind

“We're going back and forth on what this [scene] looks like and so then when we were able to talk [Aaron] into going back down [in the water] but John [who plays Pastor Bill] had already left, he's back in California, so I'm like well I'll baptize him. We’lll just get my arm kind of thing and so, in the film, when he goes down it's and comes up, that's still my arm [in] the close shots,” Zach explained.

The producers ended up keeping the end where they embrace and stumble back into the water because of how endearing it made the scene and made it feel complete.

“Ending it really felt joyful and just real in the moment,” Kori said.

Robertson’s Family Reactions

The entire Robertson family also spoke about their own reaction to seeing the movie.

“[The film] just kept watering my eyes the entire time [because] you know living it said was so many of those scenes I remember so well … that’s an imprinting on your life,” Phil’s son Al said.

One of Al’s favorite scenes was the Christmas morning scenes because of the memories he has connected with the holiday.

“Christmas was the only time Dad was sort of around more than he wasn't even in the worst times. Having that depicted and him taking us hunting that was really touching to me [because] Christmas was very special and dad was always with us - a lot of times he wouldn't even go hunting [so he could] be there with us and so that touched me a lot,” Al explained.

Phil’s youngest son Jep, also reflected on his own life while watching the movie.

“I will say - me watching the movie - it's a weird perspective cause I thought, ‘I am really lucky to be alive,’ like I feel like God's grace is me [because] I shouldn't be here,” Jep said of the fact that if Phil hadn’t changed his life around, met Jesus and reconciled his marriage, he wouldn’t have been born.

Phil reiterated what is at the heart of this film, saying that while the family is happy the movie is so successful, that wasn’t the reason they created the film.

“They told me people don’t go to the theater to watch hard stories like The Blind these days. Well, my story is about as messy as they come, but I said if just one person gets to know Jesus in that theater, it’s worth it,” Phil wrote on Instagram.

To watch Phil’s redemption story and learn more about how God can meet you no matter where you’re at, watch “The Blind” now exclusively on Great American Pure Flix.

The Blind Watch


Marissa Zimmet

I was born and raised just across the bay from Tampa, Florida (Go, Lightning!) and attended college at ECU in Greenville, North Carolina. I am a devout Catholic and am active in my parish in Charlotte, North Carolina. Outside of work, I love to run, hike, watch movies and hockey, and spend time with my dog, Rose, and my cat, Toasty, who are both rescues.