Arizona filmmaker brings Don Bolles legacy to the big screen

It's considered one of the most notorious murders in Arizona history.

- It's considered one of the most notorious murders in Arizona history.

During the summer of 1976 journalist, Don Bolles was killed when a bomb exploded inside his car outside the Clarendon Hotel.

Bolles was set to meet with an informant that day, regarding a story involving corruption between politicians and the mob, but that meeting never took place. Before he died, Bolles blamed the bombing on the mob.

Three men, all with mob ties, would later be implicated in that bombing.

But his death would expose an underworld of corruption that many never knew existed in Phoenix at that time. Now an Arizona filmmaker says he is ready to turn Bolles' story and legacy into a feature film.

"I think this is the most important story in Arizona history," said Travis Mills.

Now filmmaker Travis Mills is delving into the deep dark secret of corruption that plagued the valley in the late 1970's and ultimately led to Bolle's assassination.

"It's a moment where just when you come of age you lose your innocence, it's a moment where Phoenix lost it's innocence," said Mills.

The film looks at the aftermath of the bombing, and it's ripple effect, and how it created a sense of paranoia among many in the Valley

"The movie is like Chinatown or LA Confidential meets All the President's Men. It doesn't point any fingers, but it speculates that there were power brokers in Phoenix that were controlling this city," he said.

Mills is no stranger to documenting people that make up Arizona's notorious history. His current film Durant's Never Closes focused on the story of Jack Durant a notorious restauranteur whose close relationship with the mob remains a mystery.

"I think Don Bolles stirred the pot, and he stirred it enough to make some people uncomfortable, and Don Bolles got a little too close to that, and that is what killed him," said Mills.

Mills says they are still casting the film and hope to begin shooting next year. He says he plans on shooting entirely in Arizona, but admits that recreating the look and feel of Arizona during the 70's will be a challenge.


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