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Betsy DeVos funded a Christian movie starring Gary Busey

'Camp Manna' has not been widely released.


Audra Schroeder


Published Jan 26, 2017   Updated May 25, 2021, 3:12 am CDT

One issue not brought up in Betsy DeVos‘s confirmation hearing for Secretary of Education: She apparently put money into a Gary Busey movie. 

A new report from BuzzFeed breaks down DeVos and her husband’s financial holdings, which includes stakes in the Chicago Cubs, Whole Foods, and a little film called Camp Manna, about a Christian summer camp. The film’s website describes the plot line: To “turn boys into men of faith” via a “Biblically themed Olympiad known as the God Games.” 

Busey plays a “slightly deranged, born-again Vietnam veteran” named Jack “Cujo” Johnson, who founded the camp. It was filmed in Michigan, reportedly as part of the state’s film incentives program, according to a 2015 report from the set, which captured Busey giving a “pep talk” to younger actors.  

The film does have a decent social media presence, and some YouTube promos. As A.V. Club pointed out, this Tumblr post from the film’s counselor Matthew could read as terrible advice or a joke. Evan Koons, the guy behind the viral Church-Appropriate Dance Moves, also stars. It doesn’t appear that the film has been widely released yet. 

Busey was last in the news in 2016, when the Daily Beast ran an interview with a former Apprentice employee who accused him of sexual assault, a claim backed up by five other employees. The person making the claim also said Trump Tower was a “disgusting place to work” and that Trump took no real action to remove Busey from the show. 

H/T A.V. Club 

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*First Published: Jan 26, 2017, 4:43 pm CST