Check out this synopsis for "Walking on Palmettos," written by Jim Christell, a new feature film I'm packaging about the true life story of convicted drug smuggler and playboy, Myles Richards...
Walking On Palmettos
“I believe I must have had a pirate somewhere in my bloodline…”
Myles Richards could easily have become a CEO in the corporate world but would have found it too confining. He had the brains and certainly the fortitude for running a global enterprise, and eventually he would put his own spin on just that; but, in 1967 he was only interested in surfing the world’s biggest waves. This is a true story.
“…When you put an entrepreneurial spirit hand-in-hand with traveling to the world’s far corners, the whole idea seemed to naturally fall together. We wanted to surf the world’s best waves. Before anything else, we were just surfers…”
At the age of seventeen, during the “Summer of Love,” Myles began smuggling marijuana into the United States.
“…The general public’s perception is that smuggling always involved violence and guns. There were no guns. No violence. Never. It was nothing like that, not with me. It was all very educated people who chose this. We were upper-middle class kids…”
Myles’ smuggling career began modestly, evolving then into “the subtle art of bringing in a load, and never doing it the same way twice.” He played a high stakes game in competition only with himself. For Myles, there was no other rivalry. He was part-man, part-boy, with a steel-trap mind completely at ease in taking huge chances; yet, so naïve as to trust friends who had no capacity to keep his elevated code of “never telling on pals.” So, although it took fifteen years before the D.E.A. even knew his name, and five more years to get their hands on him, in the end- “friends” got Myles caught.
He lived a life most people could only dare to vicariously experience through the telling of his story. Of taking astonishing degrees of high risk where the air was razor thin, before then descending to incredible and violent lows when he faced a life sentence in Lompoc Federal Prison for “conspiracy to import 215 tons of marijuana”; which, in fact, was only a fraction of what he actually smuggled into the country.
After more than a decade behind bars, Myles was resigned to languish in Solitary Confinement before fate offered a chance at redemption; in part, from the love of a brother who Myles had scarcely noticed their whole lives, and from the love of two very different women who along Myles’ path had both found their way into his heart. Together these three people, each in their own way, reached out and saved him.
“…When we were young we had no concept of repercussions. It was just different back then. No one was looking for us. You just had to have the stones to go out and sail around the world. And the world’s a big place. But then, it can happen. Like always looking for that next bigger wave, you get caught up in it.”
Walking On Palmettos is an adventure from another time, not so long ago.