The Coen Brothers have been responsible for some excellent films including The Big Lebowski starring Jeff Bridges as The Dude, who is introduced as quite possibly the laziest man in Los Angeles County. In the scene where he is lying in bed with Maude she says “Tell me about yourself Jeffrey” and he responds by saying that he was one of the authors of the Port Huron Statement and one of the Seattle Seven, hinting at a less lazy past.
Recently I came across an 18 minute video by Jeff Feuerzeig called “The Dude” which explains that the character was actually based on a real person called Jeff Dowd. Jeff is an American film producer and political activist who really was one of the Seattle Seven and went to jail briefly following a violent protest against the Vietnam War. The Seattle Seven were all members of the Seattle Liberation Front.
In researching my facts for this blog post I came across a 2008 interview of Jeff Dowd by Jon Zelazny on Eight Million Stories. Well worth a read.