Phil Robertson once could have never imagined the life he has now. The 77-year-old became best known as the Duck Dynasty patriarch on the popular A&E television series, which ran for 11 seasons, from 2012 to 2017. But prior to having fame and recognition, both for the TV show and his conservative views, Robertson had an entirely different life, one that included addiction and personal conflicts, before he turned his life completely around.
Phil’s formerly-troubled life, long before Duck Dynasty, is the subject of a new movie, The Blind, out this fall. For Robertson, it was a sobering look at the life he once lived, while also a perhaps unlikely story of redemption, soon available for the world to see.
“On one side, it’s very embarrassing just to peel back every sin you’ve ever committed,” Phil tells Everything Nash. “That’s the first part. The ending ends well. I repented, put on my brakes, apologized to Miss Kay, my wife, and raised four boys… All I can say is, it was embarrassing at first, but I think if it just wins one, I’ll be happy.”
Phil might have never considered sharing his life story with the world, if not for the encouragement of his nephew, who convinced him his story had merit.
“He convinced me to do it,” Phil reveals. “I said, ‘Whoa, whoa.’ He said, ‘Look at people in our culture.’ It’s a sad thing to look at. I started out teaching school. We needed a story of redemption.”
Phil has yet to watch The Blind in its entirety, but what he did see he admits was hard for him to watch.
“I’ve not seen the whole thing,” Phil says. “I just saw little blurbs. But all I can say is, it’s embarrassing. I’m glad it’s behind me.”
Phil’s son, Jase, also weighs in on the movie, and how it portrays his now-famous father.
“I would say people that have seen Duck Dynasty will probably be surprised,” Jase acknowledges. “This is the before my parents came to Christ story. It’s well-acted. It’s gritty. It’s not cheesy, and it’s the real reason I gave my life to the Lord. I didn’t find the Lord in church, or anything like that. I just saw my dad, who was one of the worst humans that I knew, completely transformed into one of the best. So when I got to inquire about why, that’s how I came to know the Lord. They do a really good job.”
No one is more surprised than Jase, except maybe Phil, at how the lives of the Robertson family clan have turned out. When asked if he could have ever predicted not only the success of Duck Dynasty, but the family’s successful Duck Commander company, Phil and Jase’s Unashamed podcast, and now a film, Jase concedes that no one is more surprised than he is at how their lives have unfolded.
“Absolutely not,” Jase says. “At every turn, I’ve said, ‘That won’t work,’ or ‘Nobody’s gonna do it.’ Like our podcast, I didn’t even know what a podcast was. We’ve done 700 episodes now, and I’m staying up all night. I have this weight on my shoulders to try to do the best I can, to accurately depict what the Lord wants us to do. So, it’s a lot, but I think the Lord is driving the train.”
The Blind stars Aron Von Andrian as Phil. The movie will premiere on September 28. Find more information at TheBlindMovie.com.