December 2012 Film Updates
The website is coming! At long last, the 63 Boycott website is planned to launch in early 2013. The site is designed to find people who participated in the Chicago School boycott of 1963. It features a short edited clip from never-released B&W 16mm footage of the boycott including interviews with the young marchers. We are interested to speak with and possibly interview for the film anyone who participated in the boycott in anyway. If you or anyone you know participated in the 1963 CPS boycott, please contact Producer Zak Piper: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Lastly, Director Gordon Quinn will took part in the panel Chicago: Segregated City on December 17th and screened clips from 63 Boycott along with clips from other Kartemquin films. It was a great event, showing there is real interest in this film and that it could prove a key tool in opening up conversations about segregation in Chicago.
The main subject of the film, Peter Anton, spent time working on new pen and ink illustrations for the film. He unveiled them to the film team for the 1st time a few days ago and they look fantastic. We can't wait to share them with you via the film.
We also learned that we've advanced to round 3 of ITVS' competitive open call process. Keep your fingers crossed for us!
American Arab continues to be refined as director and producer Usama Alshaibi begins to shape the current edit.
The frenzy began in May when the As Goes Janesville trailer featuring the "divide and conquer" moment between Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker and a billionaire donor went viral during the middle of that state's historic recall election. There were over 230,000 views of the trailer at Huffington Post alone. By October As Goes Janesville was screening in over 100 cities, broadcast across America on PBS' Independent Lens, and the filmmakers were making appearances on CNN, Fox, Chicago Tonight, Morning Edition, and Democracy Now among other media outlets during an election season that featured Janesville native Paul Ryan on the GOP ticket.
They had much to be thankful for on Thanksgiving — well-deserved attention for a timely film and now a break to reunite with their families.
The break is short, though. As Goes Janesville picks up its screening schedule in 2013 with the New Jersey Film Festival and DCTV in NYC on February 10 and 11. You can keep up with screenings at the film's website. Independent Lens is doing a special "encore" rebroadcast on February 4th, 10pm ET — but always check local listings.
Cinema Guild is taking pre-orders for the Educational DVD and Kartemquin will release the DVD to consumers on January 28th (pre-order NOW OPEN). There are loads of extras, from interviews with former Vice Presidential candidate Paul Ryan and the GM executive who negotiated labor deals with the United Auto Workers to behind-the-scenes features, videos of our "bizLab" discussions with business and labor leaders, deleted scenes, and endlessly entertaining commentary from director Brad Lichtenstein, editor Leslie Simmer and co-producer Nicole Docta.
The team is also launching two new initiatives, bizVizz and bizLab. BizVizz is our corporate accountability mobile app that gives you instant access to companies' records on paying taxes, receiving government subsidies and making campaign contributions. Please visit the website and sign up if you have an iPhone — we will soon need beta testers!
BizLab is our initiative to bring business, labor and civic leaders together to discuss the thorny issues raised by the film like wages and our shrinking middle class. We are rolling out this initiative across the country. If you are interested in helping us put together a "bizLab" event in your community, contact Ally Davis (email@example.com).
As always, thank you all so much. We are nothing without your support.
The Life Itself team plan to hit the ground running in December. Director/Producer Steve James and Producer Zak Piper have a bevy of meetings and calls lined up before the holidays related to fundraising, archival materials, workflow, production agreements, shooting schedules -- basically every aspect of pre-production filmmaking. Emily Hart will lead the massive archival search, beginning in earnest sometime early next year. Also early next year, expect a big announcement or two!
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Mormon Movie (Working Title)
Director Xan Aranda and team are in deep preparation for a highly active upcoming year, with plans to shoot during most of 2013. The film will take them to Mexico, Utah, and California.
Stay tuned for news regarding the Mormon Movie winter fundraiser to take place at Chicago's Hideout on February 2, plus developing details on a springtime collaboration with the acclaimed Victory Gardens Theater.
The fall has been incredibly busy for The Homestretch as the directors relocated to Chicago to start the official edit with Leslie in October and continue concentrated filming.
Anne and Kirsten and the project were asked to be Sundance Documentary Fellows at the 2013 festival and, after the initial Sundance development support, are thrilled to have this continued support and opportunity - so if anyone is going to be in Park City in January, let us know!
The Homestretch team (now including AP Tristan Hanson!) are working on their demo reel for the next round of ITVS Open Call and the Sundance Production grant. We're also about to kick off a new grassroots community building and fundraising campaign; the Home Dinner Project will ask friends, family and colleagues to host dinners (the goal is 20 dinners across the nation this winter) in their home focusing on "What HOME means" in an effort to make folks aware of the film project and take our first step into the social advocacy campaign. If you, or someone you know might be interested in hosting, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
In November, The Interrupters joined the political debate as part of SnagFilms’ online series featuring documentaries with politically sensitive issues - Snag The Vote. Following the online screening, filmmakers Steve James & Alex Kotlowitz were joined for a teleconference discussion featuring outreach workers from CeaseFire’s Brooklyn based operation, SOS Crown Heights.
Later in the month, The Interrupters was featured at Toronto’s Regent Park Film Festival. The packed house screening of 300+ people featured a post-screening discussion with local community organizers, the film’s Outreach Coordinator - Patrick Lile, as well as Cobe Williams appearing via Skype. The Interrupters also took home the Festival’s Audience Choice Award.
The month of November closed out with The Interrupters returning to Los Angeles for a screening at USC’s Frank Sinatra Hall. The film was introduced by acclaimed filmmaker and USC alum John Singleton. In his opening comments, the Oscar nominated director said, “Those of you who know my work know how important this subject is to me. This film I think is one of the best movies made within the last ten years.” Following the film, Steve James, and Interrupters Ameena Matthews and Eddie Bocanegra were joined on stage by moderator and USC School of Cinematic Arts Vice Dean Michael Reno for a discussion about the film. Read more on the USC screening.
In 2013, we will finally launch www.interruptviolence.com, a new web-based initiative designed to open up dialogue about violence in Chicago and beyond.
As part of the Chicago Humanities Festival on November 10th, 230 lucky attendees got a sneak preview of clips from The Trials of Muhammad Ali The scenes were very well received. Chicago journalist Laura Washington expertly moderated a discussion and posed questions to director Bill Siegel and producer Rachel Pikelny about the filmmaking process. Check out photos of the event HERE.
We still need funds to cover our archival licensing fees and give this documentary the worldwide audience it seeks. Help us make this film by making a tax-deductible donation today. Thanks for your support!
Typeface is trying to help save Hamilton! The Hamilton Museum, featured in our 2009 documentary Typeface, will be evicted from the building that bears its name, and desperately needs help to save its priceless, historic collection of wood type - the world's largest. Learn more and support their appeal.
To help, we're donating 50% of all our DVD and merchandise sales until the end of the year, and will be presenting a fundraiser screening in Chicago in early January 2013. More details coming soon!
Over the last month, editor Matt Lauterbach has been hard at work in the first stages of the editing process, sorting through 100+ hours worth of Unbroken Glass footage. Kartemquin transcribers have been working hard prepping materials for Matt as he begins to string out scenes that will make up the film. However, even as Matt starts to sort out the post-production process, upcoming shooting dates with director Dinesh Sabu are scheduled throughout December.
Dinesh and Unbroken Glass were also featured in a Medill Reports story by Northwestern Student Mariam Khan. In the story, Dinesh reflects on the project, mental health funding and battling the stigma of mental illness.
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