Writer, Rebel and Raconteur- George Christie is the modern day American Hemingway living in Spain and filming "Marked-The Unforgiven"
We caught up with George Christie, under quarantine, at his home in Spain and we thought we would ask him 10 interesting questions that should take our minds off the Covid 19 pandemic
You had a VIP flight back to California from Spain due to Covid 19 and we heard you refused to take it?
I was surprised what a big deal everyone made about it on social media. What really happened was that one of the producers of the show we are filming in Spain, “Marked-The Unforgiven”, Sutish Sharma, reached out to me and said that the streaming service wanted everyone to go home for a month or so until we see the full impact of this pandemic. I laughed and told Sutish that I love Spain and have good friends in Almeria and Malaga and I really don’t feel like leaving. There was silence on the other end of the line and I said to Sutish- “Look, in life when adversity comes, some guys run and some guys stay. I am staying!”. I went on to add- “Running away from problems never solved a f***in’ thing!”. Next thing I know, there are pictures of me saying that all over the social media map!!..
Is it true that you were once the President of the Hells Angels Motorcyle Club and that you also had a top secret clearance with the Department of Defence? How is that even possible?
From the outside, I suppose I would seem like a character straight out of a Raymond Chandler novel but the truth is that I left the Marines and went to work for the American Department of Defense and during that time, I did have a top secret clearance and during my off hours, I befriended some guys from the motorcycle club world; we loved bikes, we loved freedom and we loved America..but at some point in the seventies I knew that I couldn’t do both things so I became a Full-Patch member in 1976 and went on to become the President of the Ventura California Chapter for several decades. I retired from the Hells Angels in 2010 and I became a writer.
What was your first best selling novel?
“Exile on Front Street: My Life as a Hells Angel and beyond”
What was your first experience as an Actor?
I would say I am most well-known for a six part Series that I did on History Channel called “Outlaw Chronicles” which covered my life in the Hells Angels. The best way to sum up the Series would be to say- “It’s my memory of the good times with a band of brothers who love freedom and adventure”
So, we understand that History Channel chose “Outlaw Chronicles” as one of their top series in the ratings and they put it on all the time?
(Laughing).. I am really proud of that show but nothing gets higher rating than Shark Week!!
So, tell us about your novel that is to be adapted for a television show that will be filmed in Spain?
Well, I wrote a fiction novel based on my life experiences called “Marked” and that best seller is what the show is based upon. It’s about an exclusive outlaw Ventura, California Motorcycle Club that only has members that served in the American military and the founder is a former marine sniper that served in Vietnam. It’s a drama based series but it has humour, a lot of irony and some poignant moments. We are filming it in Almería Spain, which ironically looks just like Ventura, California, and in sound stages in Stockholm, Sweden and Madrid, Spain. I really think the show will be a hit as there are some fantastic story arcs and plot twists that I think the viewers will really enjoy.
Who are you working with on the adaptation of your novel for television?
It really started as the brain-child of Hollywood producer, Pat Andrew, of Wanda-Halcyon television- he is not just someone I work with but also a friend of mine. We spent about a year just trying to figure out how to adapt the novel to make it current for modern day. He is one of the best creative guys in the business who just happens to be stuck in studio management….if you talk to any writer who deals with him, they’ll tell you that he “gets” writers and artists better than any Hollywood producer. There’s also Sutish Sharma of New Street Pictures, London who is a great guy with a great sense of humour. I am really blessed to work with a great creative team at the agency, Hormiguea, in Almeria- Jose Maria Gomez and Jose Carmelo Morillas really understand the vision of the show so all the executives, production crew etc have been a real joy to work with from day one.
Where do you live in Spain?
I live in a beautiful apartment in Malaga and the production has a great apartment for me in Almeria but I haven’t seen it yet as I won’t move in until May.
As I sit here interviewing you in your beautiful apartment via video chat (so we don’t violate the Covid 19 quarantine), you strike me as a really intelligent gentlemen, it is very hard to picture you as a non-conforming rebel with the Hells Angels.
(Laughing)….I am a renaissance man so I have a lot of sides to me..I can tell you that some of the most intelligent, loyal and trustworthy people that I ever met were members of the Hells Angels..and, of course, I have changed a lot since I retired and became a full-time writer and actor. The producer, Pat Andrew, said to me once that the network asked him what kind of guy I was…and according to Pat, he said the following “the living embodiement of Hans Solo from Star Wars!” so after I thought about it, I thought it was a fair assessment ..I am very loyal to my friends and family, of course, and I treat everyone with respect but I don’t suffer fools..
Last question…is it true that your daughter in California is a lawyer and represents one of the American groups that is trying to buy the Malaga CF football team?
Well, like any father, I am very proud of Moriya..she worked very hard to become a successful lawyer in America. In regards to her clients, I can’t comment. That’s her life and I have taught my daughter always to respect confidentiality. I will say that the more she comes over for meetings in Spain, the more I will get to spend time with her which is a joy!