January 25, 2010

a wonderful weekend!

This was an exciting weekend! On Friday the Finding Kind teaser/trailer premiered at the ReelStories Film Festival! The whole event turned out amazing- Thanks to Katie, Tanner, Harry, Bri, Alec and Omid. There were about 1,000 people who showed up! So rad.

We set up a Kind Campaign booth at the event and sold a bunch of shirts and passed out wristbands, info cards and such. There were some really interesting people at the festival so it was great exposure for KC.

The festival played a series of Pepperdine student films, two trailers
and a two features. I was really impressed with the creativity and heart within the student films. Overall, the selected student films made a strong impression. Pepperdine has some flippin awesome, creative and insanely talented people. I miss it. tear.

Finding Kind was one of the two trailers that played before the feature. It was so amazing to watch on a huge screen. I have seen some of the shorts I have made on a screen like that before, but this was a totally different feeling. Seeing something that I have thought about for 1o years come alive on screen--man. I guess all I can say is that I felt extremely humbled and blessed and excited and many other things all at the same time. Then Molly tapped my shoulder and brought to my attention that Ron Howard and his wife were sitting two seats away from us watching the whole thing. THAT was insane!!!!!

The two features that played are called Red Gold and The Human Experience. I have seen Red Gold probably 5 times- its one of my favorite docs. I met Ben and Travis when I went to MountainFilm for the first time two years ago. They were screening their film for the first time and I remember leaving the theater thinking- I want to do that...I NEED to do that. It was that week that I realized I wanted to make a doc about girl-against-girl "crime", so, in a way, I can thank Ben and Travis
for that inspiration. Ben and Travis are insanely talented. Red Gold portrays the crucial importance of sustaining one of the most abundant Salmon runs in the world, but more importantly sustaining the simplistic yet naturally abundant lifestyle that the Bristol Bay fisherman and community have come to know so well. Its a BEAUTIFUL film with a very important message. You should check out the site and the film here: www.redgoldfilm.com

To the right is one of the still photos from the film.

The festival had two theaters running the two different features. We saw The Human Experience. Molly and I were totally blown away. Its a story about a group of guys who travel the world in search of life's biggest questions- What is the meaning of life? Why do we wake up in the
morning? Who am I? What they found is that the answer is quite simple: life is about faith, love, community and relationships. They guys travel to remote areas of the world, stricken with disease, hunger and devastation, only to find that the people within those communities know more about joy, love and compassion than most of us overpriviledged Americans. Their story shows how connected humans are, no matter where you are or who you are. It was an inspirational and beautiful film. Check out their site here: http://www.grassrootsfilms.com/thehumanexperience/
I had a chance to talk with two of the lead actors and filmmakers, Michael Campo and Jeffrey Azize. They are such awesome guys with so much ahead of them.

The next night, Tom Shadyac had a get together for all of the filmmakers and people who put on
the festival. It was such an amazing night filled with interesting and deep conversation. I LOVE Tom and all the "freaks". The bond we all made at MountainFilm is something so special and unique. That night we were celebrating life, film and another very special happening- Jedidiah and Kenny from Invisible Children were there with some very exiting news. Invisible Children was the 1 Million Dollar winner in the Chase Community Giving competition!!!! It was so awesome to be with them to celebrate such a pivotal moment for their organization. They are such rad guys doing AMAZING work. If you dont know about Invisible Children, you SHOULD. I have seen the documentary before but decided to watch it again last night. I was just as blown away and moved as I was the first time I saw it. I was laying in bed as I watched the film. There is an amazing shot that travels through a "safe house" where the hiding children sleep at night- hundreds of children crammed on a floor, hoping that they will wake up safe and alive in the morning. I couldnt help but lay in my soft, down bed feeling incredibly uncomfortable. Who am I to have my own bed, with my own apartment, with a lock on its door, knowing full well that I will wake up safe in the morning? I just cried. It felt wrong to be sleeping in my cozy bed while watching these innocent children cold, wet and afraid on the floor. I had a thought- that could be me. Its such a simple thought but its so true. I really believe in the work Invisible Children is doing. They deserve every penny of that million dollars. Their organization is the most progressive movement ending the genocide in Uganda and the abduction of child soilders in our world today. Go check out the movement and film here: http://www.invisiblechildren.com/home.php
Watch the film and get involved.

Well, thats enough for now. The weekend was filled with inspiration, amazing people and good times. It gave me fuel and motivation for this week with KC and the doc. Vegard is coming over in a little to watch some docs and continue chipping away at this film.

"The fact is, that to do anything in the world worth doing, we must not stand back shivering and thinking of the cold and danger, but jump in and scramble through as well as we can."
Robert Cushing

Love WINS.

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