Why was there a need for a re-enactment film of the JFK Assassination?

Did you know there were at least three re-enactments of the JFK Assassination in Dallas?  The first was made by the Secret Service on November 27, 1963.  My grandfather’s film had not even been given to the FBI at that time.  David Von Pein’s site shows all of the reenactment films plus  a few of the still frames from the first one here.

The Mary Ferrell website has a clipping from the Dallas Times Herald mentioning the first reenactment here.

The second reenactment was done by the FBI on 2/7/64 and few articles are written about it.  But here is a site that discusses it.

The third reenactment, lead by Arlen Specter representing the Warren Commission and utilizing Secret Service as well as FBI personnel was made 5/24/64. It is depicted above in the YouTube video uploaded by Helmer Reenberg.

I bring all of this up because as many of you know, I am suing the US Government and the National Archives for the loss of my grandfather’s film, the Nix film.  It was used by the Warren Commission reenactment as a template.  Many great researchers have studied the differences in these films and one has to ask the logical question.  Why the need for a reenactment film at all?  Wasn’t the Zapruder film good enough?  After December 1st, 1963, when the Nix film appeared to the government, why was another reenactment needed?  Much less two more? Could it be another exercise in propaganda in order to make the American people and the world believe what the government was telling us?  Can any of you comment or answer the questions I have about all these reenactments?

  • Again, why the need for a reenactment at all?  The Zapruder film was evidence and touted to be the historic record of the assassination.  Why would there be a need to reenact something that was intact?….unless….
  • Was the Zapruder film altered?  I have never believed so due to the work by my dear friend Chris Scally and many others.  But why would the government feel the need to make two more reenactments after the Nix film appeared?  Is it because they were blindsided by the appearance of the Nix film at such a late date (12/1/63) and needed to ensure the Zapruder film met the criteria the WC had set regarding the events of the assassination?
  • The government had the Zapruder camera intact so it could be used for reenactments, the Nix camera was sent back to Orville Nix in pieces, with the spring (the timing mechanism) bent so correct timing using the Nix camera again, even if repaired, could never be accurate.Also Note the usage of props, films and personnel that bring up questions regarding the need for and reason for these reenactments:
  • JFK’s limousine was not used.  The Queen Mary was.  Many researchers have pointed out that the angles and heights were different allowing the “target points” of JFK’s back and neck match the WC conclusions.  See more on this discussion here. Pamela Brown is the expert on the limousine.  For more information as to the differences in the limousine and reenactment Queen Mary, please visit her site here.
  • Doug Horne mentions the cropping of the Stemmons Sign in one or two frames of the Zapruder film in his book, “The ARRB, Vol. IV, Chapter 14“.
  • From the late Jim Marrs : Never forget that Bob West, the Dallas County surveyor, along with his friend and associate Chester Breneman, both of whom surveyed Dealey Plaza, first for Life Magazine on the Monday following the assassination, and later in the spring of 1964 for the Warren Commission, both told me that the Warren Commission altered both their plat map and the Zapruder frame numbers which would throw off all measurements making any argument, reenactment or computer simulation based on the Warren Commission totally invalid. End of story.  
  • Excerpt regarding information above from Jim Marrs book Crossfire: Chester Breneman, a surveyor who participated in two separate reenactments of the Kennedy assassination, said the studies proved that more than one man was involved in the shooting. Breneman, who went on to become county surveyor of Eastland County, Texas, told this author in 1978 that distance and time figures published by the Warren Commission were “at odds” with figures obtained in the reenactment staged for the FBI and Secret Service in 1964.Breneman’ s story was confirmed by Dallas County surveyor Bob West, who also participated in both reenactments. Both men were in West’s office on the Monday following the assassination when a man entered. Breneman recalled:He said he was a special investigator for Life magazine. He asked if we would make an investigation down there and see if any other bullets were fired and from which direction they came. They were aware at that time that something was haywire. . . . So, we went down there and roped the area off. I stood on the parapet where Zapruder stood and took those pictures. They had still pictures of all the frames of Zapruder’s film. Breneman and West took measurements of the plaza and distances from the Texas School Book Depository and matched everything against the Zapruder stills.Later that day, Breneman accompanied Life’ s investigators to the thirteenth floor of Dallas’s Adolphus Hotel, where they were headquartered. He said at that time everybody involved agreed that no one man could have done all the shooting the day of the assassination.Breneman said the magazine investigators also had obtained a Mannlicher-Carcano rifle and attempted to work the bolt in the time frame attributed to Oswald.Breneman, a former Marine medal winner for marksmanship, said he, too, worked the rifle’s bolt for hours. He said: “We came to the conclusion that it couldn’t be done in the time limit they were trying to get me down to.”

    He also said a strange incident occurred during his time with the magazine people: “This man told me, ‘My life isn’t worth a plug nickel on this investigation.’ Then he pulled his shirt back and showed me this bullet-proof vest. I thought that was a little odd.”

    Breneman again was visiting his friend West on May 31, 1964, when the FBI and Secret Service reenacted the assassination for the Warren Commission. Both surveyors participated in the tests. Breneman recalled:

    We again measured distances and elevations by matching the frames of the Zapruder film. We examined a bullet mark on the curb on the south side of street. This part of the curb was replaced shortly after the assassination. Also, right after the assassination, they were mentioning a sign which had a stress mark from a bullet on it. It’s my understanding that this particular sign was quickly taken down and no one has been able to locate it.

    During the May reenactment, Breneman said the FBI used a big Cadillac as a substitute for Kennedy’s Lincoln Continental. “It was in no way like Kennedy’s limousine,” said Breneman.

    West said: “That was one thing that was always funny to me. They brought this big old Cadillac down to use in the tests, but it was thirteen inches higher than Kennedy’s car.”

    Breneman added: “They were all crunched up in there, shoulder to shoulder. In that condition it could have been possible for one man to shoot two of them.”

    West said his study showed that one of the alleged shots from the Depository followed a path straight through a leafy tree. West said: “If he shot through a hole in that tree, it was absolutely fantastic.” Breneman concluded:

    I wish to state that both investigations led us to believe beyond any doubt that there were two assassins. Life magazine’s special investigators believed this to be true. The Secret Service would not say. But at the time, that seemed to be the reason we were there and we felt the Secret Service felt that way too.

    After the Warren Commission published the figures from the government reenactment, Breneman and West were shocked to find that the figures did not match those made by them at the time. Both Breneman and West retained copies of the Dealey Plaza reenactment figures.

    Breneman said:

    They were at odds with our figures. After checking a few figures, I said, “That’s enough for me,” and I stopped reading. . . For instance, on our map, we marked the spot corresponding to Zapruder film frame 171. The Warren Commission changed this to 166 before they used it in the report. The Warren Report shows a 210 where we show a 208. . . . It would seem to me that . . . these figures were changed just enough that the Warren Commission could come up with the idea that another shot came from the same direction as the first. But all I have been concerned with is, did another shot come from another direction? I know danged well it did.

    Neither Breneman nor West—the actual surveyors used for the Commission’ s reenactment studies—were asked to testify. Further, the Commission declined to publish the map drawn by Breneman and West, claiming it was inaccurate.

    This map indicates a bullet hit on the south curb of Elm Street. Breneman said: “We were told not to study those bullet marks by the FBI.”

    Again, any meaningful search for the truth of the assassination was ended by altered figures and orders not to note extraneous bullet marks—all from federal authorities.

    So what does all this mean?  The Nix camera was destroyed and could never be used again.  It also shows what MK Davis has said is a bullet hitting the street.  I am trying my best to explain or ascertain, or determine what makes the Nix film so special and why the government should answer my family and the world as to why it is missing.  Any help you can give me, whether theoretically or actually would be greatly appreciated!


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