Freemasonry is the world’s largest and oldest fraternity, which some believe dates as far back as the construction of King Solomon’s temple in Jerusalem. It is based off the belief that every man is responsible for making the world a better place.
Johnny Royal joined the society six years ago, and is now a Master Mason and officer at the Elysian Lodge 418 in Los Angeles.
The idea of making a documentary on the world of Freemasonry came to him last May. This week, he and his crew will be in Guthrie shooting for the film, The Royal Art. One location is the Guthrie Scottish Rite.
“I wanted to create a documentary that showed the philosophy and symbolism of Freemasonry all together,” said Royal, who serves as director and co-writer and co-producer.
In order to gain approval for the project, he had to fly to Washington, D.C. to meet with the Supreme Council of the Southern Jurisdiction of the Scottish Rite to explain his intention. The council not only granted him approval, but guidance with topics.
The Guthrie Scottish Rite holds a biannual event where they perform all 33 degrees of the Scottish Rite in three days. Although these ceremonies are kept secret and, therefore, unfilmable, Royal will be interviewing Freemasons while in Guthrie.
“Masonry is important and one of the oldest cultures in the world. To gather the intellectual philosophies of it can be really transforming,” said Royal. “Part of the context conveyed with the film is brotherly love and the pursuit of truth.”
The Royal Art is scheduled for release in summer 2013. For more information, visit facebook.com/TheRoyalArtMovie.