Family of man whose alternative film of JFK assassination was never seen sues US gov to get it released

"It would be very significant if the original Nix film surfaced today."

Joshua Young North Carolina

The family of Orville Nix, a maintenance man who recorded the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, has filed a lawsuit requesting the release of the entire clip captured by Nix, which has been under lock and key by the federal government for 60 years.

Some believe that the video could provide evidence that there was more than one assassin in Dallas, Texas on November 22, 1963.

Per the New York Post, Jefferson Morley, who authored "The Ghost" and other books detailing the CIA, said, "It would be very significant if the original Nix film surfaced today."

The Nix family is also asking for compensation in the amount of $29.7 million in their 52-page lawsuit, filed in the US Court of Federal Claims in Washington, DC.

Morley said the film "would essentially be a new piece of evidence."

Digitized portions of the film have been released in the past and the original film in its entirety has been lost. 

"There’s a significant loss in quality between the first and second generation," Morley said of the transfer of analog film to digital.

Nix shot his film from the center of Dealey Plaza, in contrast to the film made by Abraham Zapruder, which was shot outside the car convoy's route.

Nix's film reportedly provides an unobstructed line-of-sight to the grassy knoll where some, such as JFK filmmaker Oliver Stone, have said additional shooters were located.

Some of the digitized portions of the Nix film were used in JFK's 1991 film.

The House Select Committee on Assassinations examined the film in 1978.

That same committee came to the conclusion JFK "was probably assassinated as a result of a conspiracy" and that there was likely more than one gunman.

The lawsuit alleges the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) lied to the family on several occasions and told them they did not possess the "out-of-camera original." It claims to have evidence that NARA received the film from the House Special Committee on Assassinations. 

Orville Nix sold a 25-year license to the UPI press agency in 1963 for $5,000. Nix died in 1972 and the rights to the film passed to his son and wife, who were not told it was subpoenaed by the House Special Committee on Assassinations.  The family has alleged that the government has handed the film in a poor manner since then.

A photo analyst and former NASA scientist, Kenneth Castleman, said, "The Nix film is at or near the end of its lifespan" and that the release would allow immediate digitization and study.

"Working directly from the original, assuming it’s still in good shape, might reveal data that is not visible on the copies," Castleman said.

In 1973, Castleman analyzed a portion of Nix's film showing the Dealey Plaza pergola, which "some believe shows a marksman with a raised rifle," according to the New York Post. 

The House Special Committee on Assassinations said the "controversial element" was "definitely not a person, claiming it is "just three bright spots that appear in some frames."


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