Van Nuys documentary to land at theaters soon

 - November 1, 2006, 7:15 AM

In his producing and directing debut, Brian Terwilliger wanted to make an epic movie about the romance of flying, of all things. So he decided to film a 90-minute flick called One Six Right, a documentary about the passion for flying at the world’s busiest general aviation airport, Van Nuys Airport (VNY), California.

Terwilliger, who has been in the movie industry for about 10 years, learned to fly at VNY and simply wanted to share his passion for aviation and the thrill of flying the best way he could–by making a movie. He holds a private license, has about 300 hours in his logbook and bases his Cessna 182 at VNY.

Based on the movie trailer (which is available online at, the end product is a stunning motion picture filmed in high definition that possibly could cause even the staunchest supporters of any anti-airport group to rethink their position. While the movie includes exciting scenes of airplanes in flight and plenty of historical information about VNY itself, Terwilliger brings the human element into the documentary with interviews with more than 70 people, including business aviation legend Clay Lacy, aviation writer Barry Schiff, movie director/producer and pilot Sidney Pollack, astronaut Gordon Cooper (who died in October) and a number of others who ran businesses at the airport or called VNY home.

Terwilliger told AIN that he expects most filmgoers will be “all choked up” by the end. “The way the people talk about flying,” he said, “the music, the airplane shots–it’s all very emotional.”

Terwilliger started the project in February 2000; filming began in October 2003 and finally wrapped late last year. Terwilliger said the documentary wouldn’t have been possible without the financial backing from investors, a list that includes Cessna Aircraft and Clay Lacy. However, Lacy–known for his role in filming aerial shots for several Hollywood movies–didn’t shoot any such scenes for One Six Right, though he was filmed flying his T-6 and DC-3, among other aircraft, for the flick.

At press time the film was still in editing, and Terwilliger expects it to be released to theaters this year–first in the Van Nuys area and possibly nationwide if he can persuade distributors to carry the documentary. The movie could even show up at some IMAX theaters, given that it was filmed in high definition.

A DVD version will be available later this year, and Terwilliger expressed optimism that it could even air on cable before the year is out. Visitors who go to the film Web site and reserve a DVD copy get instant access to a three-minute preview of some beautifully shot air-to-air footage from the film. In addition, visitors can also sign up to be notified when One Six Right finally lands at theaters.