Twenty years later Laughlin made cinematic history producing and starring in the anti-racism, peace film Billy Jack that for decades was the most successful independent film ever produced.
The iconic Billy Jack title character played by Laughlin became a model for the martial-arts Norris-Stallone-Seagal portrayals of the solitary hero inclined to kick the crap of all manner of bigoted, war-mongering, corporate bad guys.
Now, as the American peace movement is criticized as for its lack of vibrancy, Laughlin is producing a sequel to Billy Jack while simultaneously launching a nationwide campaign with the express purpose of alerting the nation to the dangers the Bush administration poses to the republic and halting the war in Iraq.
"Laughlin has broken box office records on long shots. The conditions are perfect for Laughlin 's Iraq campaign. Bush politically is as weak as he ever has been. Delay and Rove are scandals waiting to explode. The majority of Americans for the first time realize they have been lied to, and even congressional Republicans are beginning to see Iraq as a political liability," said Michael Victor, an activist hosting a meet-up of investors in the Billy Jack sequel in Madison on July 22, 23. "Laughlin can capture imaginations in a way that few artists can. And the brand value of Billy Jack is gold worldwide. The movie is a slam dunk; ending the war, no kidding, is fifty/fifty."
The focus of a fawning June 20 New York Times 1,162-word feature by Sharon Waxman, Laughlin - reached by phone for two one-hour interviews from his California home outside of Los Angeles on July 4th weekend - sounds like one-third filmmaker, one-third peace activist, and one-third, controlled-but-very-angry citizen resembling in some ways his Billy Jack character of the 1970s.
The 73-year-old writer activist defied industry experts 34 years ago and demolished every production and creative obstacle to his stunning cinematic success, and has dedicated his work to peace as he and his wife Delores Taylor are taking a final grand swing for the fences.
Ending the Iraq War
Laughlin and his organization plan to demonstrate conclusively to mainstream America that Bush lied America into war, launch a full-fledged, intricate campaign to end the war and hold Bush accountable for what he asserts are Bush 's lies.
Following the campaign he will release the film, and is now raising $12 million through his website BillyJack.com and EndtheIraqWar.com, where details on his peace plan can also be found.
"What we are doing is we are starting this national crusade to end the war in Iraq and to bring the troops home by Christmas. To prove to the American people that it is incredibly doable, that it 's not silly, that it 's not wild-eyed. The bottom line we are doing a five-step national event program, taking full-page ads, TV spots, sending out DVDs, proving beyond any question that this war was to occupy Iraq as an oil colony," said Laughlin.
-Demonstrate that Bush invaded Iraq to establish an oil colony through publishing six full-page national ads of meticulously-researched facts, and an aggressive media campaign.
-Hold a 10-million, 100-city End the War rally on Patriots Day, 9/11