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Film Title: Tucker: The Man and His Dream Director: Francis Ford Coppola Year: 1988 Issue Number: 1 Date Published: March, 2006 Author: J. Allen Hall, State University of New York Institute of Technology, fah1@sunyit.edu Principal Players: Preston Tucker, founder of the Tucker Motor Company--Jeff Bridges; Abe, Tucker’s financial officer-Martin Landau Genre: Business history, biography Exact Segment: Track 13, fast forward to scene of Tucker entering courthouse; stop in Track 14 when Tucker leaves Abe and enters one of his cars Exact Segment Length: 22:11 Exact Segment Start: 3:00 into Track 13 Exact Segment End: 11:16 into Track 14 Synopsis: Preston Tucker, entrepreneur and founder of Tucker Motor Company, is tried for securities fraud. The trial raises the question of idealism versus practicality. Although the film depicts Tucker as a hero, the facts revealed during the trial and his statements immediately after the trial indicate a more ambiguous character. Keywords: Entrepreneurship, justice, politics, business-government relationship Setting the Stage: Preston Tucker has designed and built “the car of the future” in 1948, a car featuring seatbelts, safety glass, fuel injection, and other innovations years ahead of their time. Tucker has accused the Big Three auto makers of sabotaging his production plans while he was busy promoting the car and selling stock in his new company. Now Tucker’s company has collapsed and he is on trial for selling stock and dealerships for a car that he never produced. Copppola on Tucker: The Man and His Dream 1

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Description of Events in Segment: The scene begins with Tucker entering the courthouse for his trial. The prosecution presents witnesses who paid for dealerships and auditors who claim Tucker used much of the $26 million he raised for personal expenses. Tucker counters that he made only honest business mistakes and that he did, in fact, produce the 50 cars required by the government for use of the...
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