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  • Award-winning playwright and actor Jason Miller experienced fame briefly, then seemed to vanish.

    Award-winning playwright and actor Jason Miller experienced fame briefly, then seemed to vanish.

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  • Filmmaker Rebecca Ferris describes what compelled her to tell the story of Jason Miller.

    Filmmaker Rebecca Ferris describes what compelled her to tell the story of Jason Miller.

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  • Jason Miller as Father Damien Karras in The Exorcist

    Jason Miller as Father Damien Karras in The Exorcist

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  • Jason Miller, writer William Peter Blatty, and Ellen Burstyn on the set of The Exorcist

    Jason Miller, writer William Peter Blatty, and Ellen Burstyn on the set of The Exorcist

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  • Jason Miller as Father Damien Karras on the set
of The Exorcist

    Jason Miller as Father Damien Karras on the set of The Exorcist

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  • Jason Miller

    Jason Miller

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  • Jason Miller

    Jason Miller

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  • Jason Miller in front That Championship Season poster at the New York Shakespeare Festival, 1972

    Jason Miller in front That Championship Season poster at the New York Shakespeare Festival, 1972

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  • Rebecca Marshall Ferris interviews Martin Sheen

    Rebecca Marshall Ferris interviews Martin Sheen

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  • Rebecca Marshall Ferris and Jason Ferris shooting interview with Stacy Keach

    Rebecca Marshall Ferris and Jason Ferris shooting interview with Stacy Keach

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The Film

Miller’s Tale is a personal journey into the life of playwright and actor Jason Miller and his relationship with his hometown, Scranton, Pennsylvania. Best known for his performance as Father Karras in The Exorcist, Miller was an equally talented writer who won a Pulitzer Prize in 1973 for his play That Championship Season. Miller experienced a brief but brilliant period of national acclaim, then curiously abandoned Hollywood to return to his hometown.

After Miller died in a local bar Scranton, at the age of 62, filmmaker and fellow Scranton native Rebecca Marshall Ferris set out with her camera to talk to the women he loved, the friends he drank with, and the celebrities he worked with to find answers to some perplexing questions. Why did this exceptional playwright, who achieved such phenomenal early success, never write a Broadway play again? And what happened to Miller in Hollywood that would make him run away from a promising acting career?

Miller’s Tale traces the artist’s intense rise to fame and fleeting creative peak. While Miller became largely forgotten by the world, he remains, even after death, a haunting presence in Scranton. Unlike a traditional biography film, Miller’s Tale uses elements of cinema verité, travelogue, and first-person narration to examine the themes that weave our lives together: dreams of success, personal failure, and hometown pride. Featuring interviews with Martin Sheen, Bruce Dern, Stacy Keach, Paul Sorvino, William Friedkin, and others.

The Filmmaker

  1. Rebecca Marshall FerrisProducer/Director