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Martin Willis: Hi, everyone. I have my first overseas Skype to Philip Mantle. How you doing, Philip.
Philip Mantle: Good evening, Martin. I’m fine, thank you.
Martin: Thanks for joining us and I saw some information on your book coming out, and it’s about the Alien Autopsy and your research in it, and you were there from the very beginning when that came out, is that right?
Philip: That’s correct. I mean, I was first contacted by the film’s owner, which is a chap by the name of Ray Santilli way back, now, in 1993, a good couple of years before the film ever surfaced on television, so it was right there from the very beginning, right in the thick of it all the way through.
Martin: Wow, and so you had to keep quiet about it for two years.
Philip: Well, basically, what happened was I was Press Officer for the British UFO Research Association and we’d had a letter from Ray Santilli’s company asking if we’d be interested in helping with a UFO documentary, so I telephoned him. He was in London. I lived 200 miles north of London, and we had a few polite conversations, and over the course of a couple of months he went on to say: well, actually, Philip, I have film of the UFO crash at Roswell, and not only that the creatures that were autopsied, so what I did in those days, this is the days before email and Skype, I quoted what I could remember from our conversations with Santilli and I informed a small number of people, both here in the U. K. and in the United States and one or two other places privately. Keep this under wraps, but here we have this gentleman whom I’ve never met. He runs this company, and this is what he’s claiming, so I didn’t go public with it but I did keep a number of close colleagues informed of what Ray Santilli was claiming, at that time.
Martin: So, can you tell the listeners how you got involved and how this whole thing came about, please?
Philip: Absolutely, Martin. I kept asking Ray Santilli to show me the film, and he said: yes, I can. No, I can’t. Yes, I can, so this went on until early 1995, and, out of the blue, I was sent a video tape of a UFO movie for review purposes only, and it prompted me to ring Ray Santilli. I rung him, out of the blue, and said: look, do you still claim to have this film, and he says: yes, but, you don’t believe me, Philip. I said: well, I can’t believe you until I, actually, see it, so he said: arrange an appointment with my secretary, come to London, and see it, which I did, so over a period of a couple of months, in early 1995, I viewed the film, several films, actually, in Ray’s office in London, and I was, also, the Conference Organizer for the British UFO Research Association, and I had a conference already planned, all the speakers booked for August of 1995 in the city of Sheffield in the north of England, and before anyone knew anything about the Alien Autopsy film in the public a colleague of mine who lives in Sheffield was also a local journalist, and he rang me and said: I’m writing a thing for my local newspaper, Philip, give me couple of quotes about your conference, now, and we’ll run a bigger piece nearer the time, so I did. I told him about – we got two Russian scientists and someone from this country coming, someone from America. Oh, and by the way, the Alien Autopsy film. That went out. Couple of days later I got a phone call from a press aide agency in Sheffield saying: is this true? And I said: yes. They asked me a little bit more information, which I gave them, ’cause I didn’t know an awful lot, myself. I’d only, just recently, seen the films. The next thing I knew the telephone just went absolutely crazy. The fax machine went berserk. Now I was getting telephone calls and faxes from both researchers and media outlets, literally, around the world, and all I could do with most of them is just pass them on to Ray Santilli. They couldn’t find him, but I had his phone number, and that’s how it, eventually, came out. It was purely by coincidence, Martin. There was no marketing campaign in situ. There was nothing planned, and it took us all, completely, by surprise. I remember one gentleman, ringing me, and said he’s been trying to get through to me for 3 days on the telephone, and he said: why don’t you have another telephone line put into your house? And I said: well, that’s great, but I can only answer one telephone at a time. It doesn’t make any difference how many phones I have. That’s how it came about, Martin. It was, purely, by luck.
Martin: Wow, as you point out in your book, and this is a spoiler alert, the film is a hoax. Now, we’re not going to end the podcast, here, because there’s so much more involved, because this thing went, in today’s words, viral, around the world, and it received tons of press, and the amazing thing about it is nobody panicked, like the government fears, or the rumor is the government fears that people will panic if they knew there was life on other planets visiting us, but anyway, can you start to tell about the process on uncovering this – took you, what? Ten years to –
Philip: It took me longer than that, Martin. I mean, basically, when I first saw the film, in Ray Santilli’s office I just thought, to myself, we need to get this out into the open, and Ray Santilli had no plans to do that, at the time, and the only thing I could think of, there and then, was: will you show it at our conference? I didn’t expect him to say yes, but he did, so my idea, Martin, was let’s get this thing out in the open, and then, not just me, but anyone can see it and can investigate it. It’s not behind closed doors. It’s not controlled. You have the film there. You can look at it. You can scrutinize it, and that’s exactly what happened. It was shown on television, on Fox in the United States, and many, many other networks around the world. It was, indeed, viral. I mean, email had just started in the 95s and the internet was still in its infancy, compared to today, and it went absolutely mad, and, so, I worked with colleagues, both here in the U. K. – a good friend of mine – became a good friend, I mean, Mark Center, in the United States, a gentleman by the name of Odgunner Road over in Norway, Mauricio Ballarta over in Italy, and a whole lot more, Michael Hesserman in Germany. We were, sort of, a loose team, if you like. There was no official connection between us all. We all were, just, determined to get to try and get to the bottom of the Alien Autopsy film, and it started as soon as it was broadcast on television. We had the film. Right, let’s see what we can do with it.
Martin: Now, I saw a TV production that showed the film, and then they also had a person that was a filmmaker come in that did special effects, and things like that, and he was going on and on and how it would be almost impossible to make that film and how expensive it would be and all that and at that point I believe that most people were believing that the thing was right.
Philip: Well, yeah. I mean, there was a – before it was released to the general public, for example, there was a private screening of the film in London, and it was an invited audience only. An American researcher, who was also an airline pilot by the name of Kent Jeffrey, I managed to get Kent an invitation, and he was convinced, there and then, that he could prove the film a fake, however, when he later wrote about the film and its various discrepancies, he was convinced it was a real film, Martin, not a special effects recreation, but the film of, perhaps, a deformed, deceased human being, so it was still a real film, in that effect. Some of the criticisms that he made of the film proved to be inaccurate, however, he still believed it was a real film and that there’s no filmmaker or film studio or special effects artist had made it, that it was a real cadaver that you saw on the slab, and he was one of the biggest critics, in the early days, but, again, that’s exactly what I wanted was to get this film out into the open and people, then, could scrutinize it. That included the special effects experts, also the medical profession. I mean, if this was an autopsy, or a dissection, call it what you will, then, surely, one of the branches of science you take it to look at is the medical profession, and, I have to be honest, the loose band of colleagues that I’ve mentioned, between us we showed it to an awful lot of physicians and pathologists and surgeons, many of whom were very impressed with it. They wouldn’t commit themselves and say: yes, it’s definitely and alien that’s on the slab. They commented on the various techniques used by the so–called surgeons on the film, but they were accurate, and they were quite impressed from that point of view. The special effects artists were critical, by and large, and they claimed it could be made this way and that way. Just so happens my best friend, here in England has worked in special effects all his life, and he’s worked on some huge movie productions and he said: yes you can make it this way, but you can, also, make it that way. There was no hard and fast way that you could make something like this. There was certain basics, but the thing about the special effects angle, Martin, certainly here in the U. K., I mean, the film industry is very small, here, and special effects is even smaller compared to Hollywood and so on, and someone would say: well, I think it’s this particular gentleman. It has the signature of his type of work. I would find this guy and I’d ring him and write to him, or whatever. No, it’s not me, but I think it’s him, so I’d go to him, whoever he was, and he’d say: no, it’s not me but I think it’s him, and I never got the same name twice. Basically, none of them knew if it was a special effects recreation, or not. They all suspected it may be, but they couldn’t point the finger at anyone, in particular, and then my colleagues did that overseas. I can’t mention any names but there was one world–renowned special effects expert that was contacted and said: did you make it? And he went absolutely ballistic. He was going to threaten lawsuits and all kinds of things, but –
Martin: Little bit of an ego, there, huh?
Philip: Well, the accusation has been made, so we felt duty–bound to follow it up. Didn’t put any credence to it, but again, that’s what we wanted, Martin, is get the film out in the open, and the various experts to look at it from whatever angle they like and say: well, it seems okay or that there’s problems with it. The thing about the film, when you look at it, there’s nothing that jumps out from the screen, immediately, to say it’s all fake. The clock on the wall is circa 1947, the telephone is – it’s on the wall, the medical instruments are all from that era. The surgeons aren’t wearing a digital watch, for example. There no one thing that will – that gives it away, so, purely, from a visual point of view it looks okay. Again, the surgical techniques seem to be consistent with that era. That’s born out by the various quotes we got from the medical profession, so there was nothing obvious, however, it was one special effects company in the United States called The Really Dangerous Company who first didn’t just give a blanket statement and say: oh it’s a – we can do that. They actually looked at the film, frame by frame, and then spotted little, what we call, bloopers. I don’t know if you use that word in the states, but little errors that only a special effects guy could, perhaps, recognize, or, if someone who was – had enough patience to sit down and play the film so slowly, so they made a little list of these inaccuracies, if you like, and I printed that out, sat in front of the TV, and, literally, had this piece of paper in front of me, and they tell you where to look and at what time, and, lo and behold, there was a few little discrepancies in it. For example, one of them was where the surgeon’s, actually, sawing the skull open the head wobbles, and it shouldn’t if it’s attached to your spinal cord it shouldn’t wobble, and you see the surgeon put his hand on top of it just to hold it steady, so it looked like it wasn’t attached properly. In other words, it was an effect. There was lots of other little tiny things, but this happened, literally, for a second, or so, so when you viewed the film at normal speed you didn’t, really, notice that, so the seeds of doubt are, then, being set in, but this, of course, I think, was a, I don’t know, a year, couple of years down the line from the film coming out. It wasn’t instantly. You had to be sufficiently interested, Martin, to do that. It wasn’t something you could spot straight away, so – and on we went, and that’s how it began. There was a – some little indiscrepancies and let’s start from there and see what happens.
Martin: Has it ever been, actually, attributed to a special effects company?
Philip: Good question. Not a special effects company, no. Years went by, literally years, and we got nowhere. We’ve got these little discrepancies, but we couldn’t find a special effects company or an artist or anything, and then I wrote an article about the film for a newsstand magazine, here, and I got an email from a chap said: I didn’t know there was still any interest in this film. We’re talking, I don’t know, ten years, now, after it had been on TV, and this was a chap called Simon, and he said: my friend made the dummies for it. Are you interested? Of course I’m interested, so, anyway, kind of, long story short, Martin, I went to meet this chap, and he wouldn’t tell me who his friend was, to begin with, but he gave me some idea of his credentials, and he wasn’t a special effects artist. He was, actually, a sculptor, whose work, from time to time, had overlapped into the film industry, so all this time we’d been looking for a special effects artist, and we were looking in the wrong direction, and, again, shortening the story, he eventually gave me enough information for me to identify who this individual was. Now, when the Alien Autopsy film was first shown on television in the United States on Fox the producer of that show was a gentleman called Bob Kiviat. Now, I’d kept in touch with Bob down the years, and I gave Bob this contact we’d got, and, between us, we managed to find who the man was, and his name is John Humphreys. John is a highly trained sculptor, in his own right, and he made the dummies. We tracked him down. He, kind of, admitted it without going public. We were working on a possible TV expose, and John kept mentioning someone else’s name. He kept saying: you need to speak to Spyros, but we never got a surname, and John, then, was signed up to work on the movie version of Alien Autopsy. That was made here in the U. K. I don’t think it was ever released in the cinema in the United States. I think you can buy it on DVD, so he, then, had to sign a contract for that and wasn’t allowed to speak to us, anymore, but, having said that, I contacted the film company he was working for, and, eventually, one of their executives confessed, if you like, accidentally, probably, and said: yes, John’s working on this movie for us, and he also made the dummies for Ray Santilli’s Alien Autopsy, so they confirmed what John had heard – earlier been telling us, but he wouldn’t go public with it, at that point, so there was this Spyros, this name called Spyros. Who was Spyros? And, again, a colleague and I made a little DVD of some interviews with people involved, and out of the blue, in 2007, we got a call from Spyros. His name was Spyros Melaris originally from Cyprus, but that’s his parents were – he was born here, in the U. K., and he said: I am the man that lead the team that faked the Alien Autopsy, and he filled in all the blanks. He told us everything, chapter and verse. His reason for contacting us and deciding to go public with this story was that he’d had a personal disagreement with Ray Santilli, his business partner, and decided enough was enough, and that the truth must now be told, and Spyros Melaris is the man who faked the Alien Autopsy film, and John Humphreys was a friend and colleague of him, of his, and he hired him to make the dummies, and I can tell you all the story, Martin, if you like. I mean, basically, Spyros, as a young man, was trained as a mechanic. He liked to train as a magician. He was always interested in magic, and still is, and he, then, went into film. He used to make pop videos, that kind of thing, so in early 1995 he was going to France to a television conference type thing. It’s like the film festival, but for TV, over in Cannes, so he got out a media directory and he faxed a number of companies that were close to him saying: look, I’m going over to do some filming with a little crew. We have some spare time. If you’re looking to hire a crew we’re available. Again, just by coincidence one of these companies was the one owned by Ray Santilli met Santilli in France and Santilli told him this story about having alien footage from Roswell and so on, so they arranged to meet back in London, which they did. Santilli showed Spyros a piece of film that’s known as the tent footage. It’s not been shown on television, but it’s the same film that I was first show. It’s about 6 or 7 minutes long. You see a creature on a slab covered by a blanket and couple of men in white coats looking like they’re handling some kind of flesh. Spyros immediately said: I’m sorry, Ray, but that has never been shot on film. It’s video. It’s not been transferred to video. It is video, so Ray came across with his sob story that, you know, he’d originally bought film but it was no good and he’d lost all his money, so Spyros says: don’t worry, I will recreate it for you and we’ll make it, and we’ll do it, and the budget they had to make it was 30,000 pounds. They, literally, built a small set in Spyros’s sister’s apartment in London. She was having the apartment refurbished and Spyros’s girlfriend did all the medical research – spoke to doctors and morticians and pathologists – got books out. When they hired in the props, like the surgical equipment and the telephone and they were – they hired them from different companies, had them delivered to different addresses, so they could never all be traced to the same project, and what some people don’t know, Martin, is there, actually, are two separate autopsy films. Only one has been seen on TV. I’ve seen them both, so they make the first one, and they view it back, after they’ve done it, and Spyros’s girlfriend said: that’s a mistake. It was a mistake with one of the medical procedures. If you show that on television it will instantly be shown as a fake, because it’s wrong, so Santilli, apparent, was almost in tears, so he said: don’t worry about it. We’ll come back, tomorrow, and we’ll do it again, so they made a mold for the dummies. They made another one. This time there was a hole in its leg. There’d been an air pocket, so they, literally, went to the butcher’s and got some sheep bones and put that in the knee joint and burnt it when it looked like it was burned, as if in a crash, and improvised. They shot it. They played it back. It looked fine. That’s the version that everyone has been seen on TV and stills from it in newspapers and magazines around the world. Spyros claims the idea was not to make a load of money – was just to, perhaps, get Santilli’s money back, and then in 6 months time, 12 months time, to hold their hands up and say: we did it. Aren’t we clever? Please come and hire us. They wanted to fool the world to show how good they were at what they were doing, and make no bones about it, Martin, John Humphreys is a world–class sculptor in his own right, but Spyros was the brains behind this, in that respect. Santilli was just the front man and the money man. Spyros never made any money out of it. He said, right ask my me done, I’m off. He wasn’t interested in UFOs. He’d no idea of the amount of interest the film had generated around the world, and, every now and again, he’d ask Santilli if he’d got his money back and he just said: no, no, no, and that was it. That was it, and I’ve been – I’ve interviewed Spyros. He even made story boards. He didn’t just make a film he made a story out of it. He even flew to Roswell and flew over the terrain, hired a private plane and, literally, took some film of the area, just in case. I’ve seen his research folders that he did, at the time, he’d – his faxes from Kodak. They were even planning, at one point, to film a crashed flying saucer, and he’d hired a disused go kart stadium, and they were going to build it in there. They’re even going to build a wooden truck, a truck, a U. S. Military truck, but make it out of wood, and he had a huge folder of all these trucks and he said I’m even going to – was even going to put the registration plate of this one on the back of it, so if you check the records you’ll find that that was a real truck, and lots more besides. He had his diaries of the time with the little notations in there, so it’s a long story, but he filled in all the missing pieces there and then, and he’s only ever spoken once about it in public as Spyros. That was a conference that I organized, and I thought it was a brave thing to do, but as he pointed out, he said: look, I’m not the guy who sold this and made all the money. I’m not the guy that conned you. I was just the hired hand, so to speak. Santilli is the man behind it. He’s the one that sold it to the various TV companies and told a pack of lies. I haven’t told any lies. I just didn’t say anything, and, but now I am, so there’s no doubt about it. Some people said: oh, it was a simple hoax when it wasn’t a simple hoax. They put a lot of thought into it, a lot of plannning. Spyros has a great sense of humor, and you even see bits of that in the film, because the – for those that seen it there’s also some debris from so–called wreckage with symbols on. Well, Spyros used ancient Greek. He’s of Cypriot origins, so he put Greek symbols on and just altered them, a little bit, and if you had looked close enough, which we did, they actually spell: freedom, and he thought that was a great name for a spaceship. If you turn these symbols upside down it spells out: video TV, but it – that was a bit of a fluke, but it’s just the way – was it his little things in there. He though freedom in Greek – in ancient Greek was a great word for a flying saucer. He also tells the story of when they’d made the first autopsy film and it was no good they literally went home and left the creature lying on the slab with its head cut open and all the guts cut open and all the giblets everywhere. When they’d got there the next morning they’d actually had a burglar. Someone had broke into the apartment and stolen a couple of replica bits and pieces. Can you imagine the look on the burglar’s face? Help me. This thing’s laying on the slab with blood and guts everywhere, so –
Martin: I can’t believe they went ahead and stole something instead of just taking off. That’s pretty funny.
Philip: Well, they stole something from downstairs, first, before they went upstairs, and he thought: oh, we’d been rumbled. Whoever’s broke in will tell the authorities. Then he, suddenly, realized: no they can’t because they been burgling the apartment, so they can’t tell anyone, and, of course, Santilli won’t admit any of this. He’s told so many untruths that he dug himself into a hole, but Spyros is not after any money. He just wanted to tell his story. He has considered writing his own book about it, but he’s a businessman, now, and that’s not on the top of the – his list of priorities, so he’s interviewed, pretty much, in full for the book. I re–interviewed him, again, just before the book was published just to get, sort of, and update. John Humphreys has said: yes, it’s all correct, pretty much, although he doesn’t want to get involved. He’s a quiet fellow and he just wants to get on with his work, and others that were involved, as well, have come forward. Not everyone, but more than enough, Martin, and it took, in total, 14 years from my first meeting with Ray Santilli 1993 to actually saying: case closed, it was 2007, so I never thought it would take that long to get to the bottom of anything, and, but it did and I’m glad it did, so that’s, sort of, a potted history of how we managed to track all the main players down, and I’m finally case closed.
Martin: While you were talking about your book can you go ahead and say the title of it? And, by the way, that’ll be linked right under this podcast, as well.
Philip: Yeah, the book’s final closure, as far as I’m concerned. It’s called Roswell Alien Autopsy: The Truth Behind The Film That Shocked The World ’cause it was, as far as the UFO world was concerned, it was a shock. It polarized groups and individuals. It was the first online UFO battle ever, Martin. I mean, like I said the internet and email was still in its infancy. The X-Files were doing roaring trade on TV, so it came out at the right time, and it was an absolute battle. There was one gentleman in England, I’ll not mention. I’ll not mention him by name, but he even accused me of being part of it, of being part of the hoax, helping Santilli fake it, and he’s never apologized for being wrong, of course. People thought Santilli was paying me huge amounts of money, which is not true. If he did he didn’t tell me where he sent it ’cause I never got it, and he never offered it, so there was all kinds of wild rumors and allegations, so some people said: well, why bother writing the book, Philip. I said: well, I want to set the record straight. Santilli made a movie out of this. He’s said so many things that are not true. I also want to do it for UFO research. I mean, research that we’re involved in, Martin, sometimes gets a lot of stick, sometimes justified, others not. They call us all wild–eyed believers, but I wanted to show that research will follow the evidence wherever it takes, and this – in this case it ended up with a hoax. A lot of people labeled it as a hoax to begin with, Martin. That is true, but calling something a hoax and proving it is two different things. If the justice system worked that way you’d just say: well, he’s guilty of murder go and send him to the electric chair. It doesn’t work that way. You have to prove it, first, so I remember sitting down for lunch one day, with Santilli in London, and I looked him right in the eye and I said: Ray, I’ll tell you, here and now, no matter what it takes I’ll get to the bottom of this film, and he just smiled and just said: that’s fine, Philip. No problem, and I meant it, and I didn’t think it’d take me that long. I didn’t know what the bottom of it was at that time, Martin. There were lots of rumors about what it may be. Some people said it’s a science fiction film. They off–cut from some sci–fi film that he’s bought or he’s been given or whatever, so there was all kinds of different ideas and hypotheses, and I followed them wherever they led, and, eventually, it did lead to it being a complete hoax. I said, from day one, I don’t think Santilli, with respect, he’s clever enough to hoax this film, and I was right. He wasn’t. He put the money up, him and a colleague, and he didn’t hoax it. He got someone else to do it for him, which, when you get to know Ray, that’s what his business is. He doesn’t make anything, himself. His business is, basically, music, and his company will buy back catalogs or license back catalogs from pop artists and groups, and then re–license them, so there’s nothing of his own there, and this was the same. It was someone else’s work that he went on to sell and make a ton of money from, so I was, kind of, right, in that respect, but it was a long journey, quite arduous at times, quite funny at times, as well, and I’m glad I did it and I’m glad I got to the bottom of it.
Martin: I am, for everyone’s sake. Now, let’s talk about Ray Santilli little bit. Do you have an idea of how much money he made off the film?
Philip: I haven’t got an exact idea of how much money he made, but I know he made a lot of money. Like I said, Martin, to make the film it cost 30,000 pounds. In 1995 that would have probably been about, I don’t know, $50,000. A lot of money, I know, but, for example, just for the American rights, so the Fox paid him a six-figure sum, ’bout a quarter of a million dollars.
Philip: So, instantly, just with the TV rights with Fox it’s $200,000 up –
Martin: Wow! Now, do you – go ahead.
Philip: – and on top of that, Martin, there was – before that, there was a – the first magazine to release stills of it was called VSD in France. They paid him $60,000, and then it was released at 20 or 30 other countries around the world, so they paid him money, as well, and then it was the video rights, because when it came out in the states, Alien Autopsy: Fact Or Fiction, it then came out on video, later. Of course, Ray got a cut of that, and then, of course, I don’t know, 10 or 12 years down the line he does a movie of it, so he gets more money out of that, so he’s done very nicely out of it, thank you very much.
Martin: It seems like fraud, to me, and was he – has anyone ever talked about charging him, somehow?
Philip: Yeah, I mean, they have, but it would have to be the television companies that he dealt with that would have to do that. It’s a – I’ve inquired about it, Martin, it’s a civil matter, here in the U. K. rather than a criminal matter, in that respect. The police cannot go and arrest him for it. Let’s say you were the head of Martin Willis television, and you’d paid whatever amount of money to broadcast it on your network. Technically, you could look at that from a legal point of view, however, the reason you licensed or took an option on that film, in the first instance, was to make money on it, yourself. I mean, it’s estimated that something like – ’cause it was so popular on Fox that they showed it 3 times. They added little bits each time and re–showed it, so it’s estimated they had a viewing audience of about 30 million, and when it sold on video it was the biggest selling documentary video of the year, so Fox made its money out of it, so they couldn’t say they’ve been ripped off, in that respect. It hasn’t suffered any reputational damage, as a result, so it’s difficult to say, justifiably, why would we do it? Yeah, it’s fraud, but no one lost out. We all made money from it, so leave it alone, so myself an one or two other colleagues have looked at that angle to see, but it would take Fox or someone like that to do that, and that’s never happened, and it never will, I don’t think, Martin.
Martin: Yes, are there – are you aware of any staunch believers that are saying that you’re wrong and the film is still right?
Philip: Oh, absolutely. I have a friend in the United States Ed German. I traveled to New Mexico in 2007 with Ed, and we drove down through the desert in his car. I ended up in Roswell at the festival, there, and I was fortunate enough to lecture there, and Ed – he’s absolutely convinced it’s 100% authentic – will not believe one word that I say or that of Spyros Melaris. There’s a place in the desert, which has some oddities about it, where we visited, and Ed believes that is the actual crash site of the UFO. I couldn’t take you there. Ed can, and, again, that’s all featured in the book, and there are others, I’ve got to be honest, but, and some people think: well, Santilli did see real film and did recreate it. It’s not Spyros’s imagination. He really did see film, so there’s a mixture, but, again, what I’ve done with the book, Martin, is say: look, here’s all the research. Here’s how the film came out. Here’s who saw what, and these are our – my attempts to get to the bottom of it. I think I have done, but you don’t have to believe me. I’m not out to, say, indoctrinate anyone. There’s a number of possibilities that I mentioned. The film was thought to be a hoax, a human – deformed human being, some kind of crap propaganda film, et cetera. You can believe what you want. Here’s my research. You make up your own mind, and mine’s done. I have no doubt that it’s a fake. No such film ever existed. There’s no mysterious cameraman who Santilli claimed to have bought it from. He had a film of the cameraman. That’s another part of the story, Martin. Basically, Spyros went to Los Angeles and got a bum off the street, an old gentleman who was living rough on the street, put him up in a hotel, here’s some money, some food, stay overnight, here’s the camera, keep still, and just read this out, and that was, supposedly, the cameraman’s interview, and, again, that’s all featured in the book, and it was just a bum off the streets, but he knows his name. It just so happened he had been an actor in his youth, but has fallen on hard times, and became an old drunk, so that’s another part of the story, but what I’ve said to – just, literally, today that the actual story of the hoax, and how it was done and how it was made, is far more interesting, far more amusing, that any untruths spun by Ray Santilli his colleagues. You know what I mean? It really is, ’cause there’s lots of funny little things that happened to them when they were – they used to meet in a cafe to discuss what they were going to do and, you know. It was just funny. It just, really – so, what I’d really like to do, Martin, is, of course, is to wrap it all up and finish the Alien Autopsy film how it started, and that’s on television – do the final closure on it, little documentary, here it is, here’s Spyros, here’s all the guys that made it, over and done with. Whether that will ever happen, or not, I don’t know, but that would be the icing on the cake.
Martin: Right, now, when we first started talking I was going to ask you why Ray Santilli would want to make this film in the first place, but, obviously, that’s answered. He realized how much money he was going to make out of it.
Philip: Oh, absolutely. I mean, if you can be fair to Ray Santilli he never made any secret that his only interest in this film was to commercialize it, in other words, to make as much money from it as he could. He never hid that fact, and, like I said, he’s made an awful lot of money, and he even made a movie out of it here in the U. K., so he may come up with some other idea. I mean, I haven’t spoken to him for years, now, he won’t want to have anything to do with me, but –
Martin: Wonder why?
Philip: Well, he even pitched the idea that Alien Autopsy: The Musical, so –
Martin: Yeah, that’s really good with music, jeez – seeing blood and guts.
Philip: But nothing would surprise me. Nothing would surprise me. If he saw a commercial angle at it, then he would take it. It’s as simple as that, so, if something else did come out that would make him a few more dollars, it wouldn’t surprise me, but I think he’s pretty much milked, now, to be honest, but it was always a – money was a motivating factor for Santilli, but for Spyros and his team it wasn’t. They wanted to do this little project that they saw to, sort of, showcase their talents, both as filmmakers and special effects artists. Fool the world then hold their hands up and say: didn’t we do a good job? Do you want to hire us? But that didn’t happen, but that was their motivation, not money.
Martin: Wow, well, you’ve been absolutely terrific. Do you have a website?
Philip: My website is beyondroswell.com. All the Alien Autopsy research is on there. There’s even a lengthy transcripted interview with Spyros, so you can see, pretty much, blow by blow. Couldn’t put that in the book, it was too long, so I’ve condensed it, and, of course, the book Roswell: Alien Autopsy is available on Amazon.
Martin: Very good, and, again, it’ll be linked right under this podcast. Well, thank you so much for the – for filling us in, today. It’s been a real pleasure, and, actually, entertaining, as well.
Philip: The pleasure’s all mine, Martin, and I wish everyone a pleasant evening.
Martin: Do you want say evening or do you want to say something else?
Philip: Well, it’s evening, here.
Martin: Okay, we’ll leave it in. Okay, this is Martin Willis with Philip Mantle and that’s it for today.