In 1971, at the height of the Vietnam War, Oscar-winning actor and activist Jane Fonda, along with Donald Sutherland and fellow performers, mounted the F.T.A musical comedy tour across Southeast Asia as a response to Bob Hope’s USO tour. They redubbed the original Army recruitment slogan “Fun, Travel, Adventure” to “Free The Army or F*** The Army”. After the Army tried to limit the troops’ access to performances, it became known as “The Show the Pentagon Couldn’t Stop!”
Fonda and Sutherland’s co-stars included writer/actor Michael Alaimo, singers and activists Holly Near, Rita Martinson, Len Chandler, and comedian Paul Mooney. Despite being highly controversial, the show was a huge success amongst enlisted men and women, many of of whom appear in the film expressing their disillusionment with war, imperialism and racism.
F.T.A. has now been fully restored in 4K by IndieCollect and is preceded by a new video introduction by Jane Fonda, which provides historical context and explains the impetus that sparked the creation of the F.T.A. troupe.
F.T.A. opens in virtual cinemas through Kino Lorber’s Kino Marquee label beginning March 5th. Check out the trailer and poster for F.T.A., below.