Earth Week: What’s Your IMPACT?

As Thursday is the 40th anniversary of Earth Day, we’re thinking about our impact in the sustainability work that we do, and the change that media projects like No Impact Man can spark. How do filmmakers create an audience engagement campaign that is unique, yet has ties to a movement that already exists? Gillian Caldwell, Campaign Director of 1Sky, puts it simply when speaking about their partnership with No Impact Man, “It’s important that the relationship be reciprocal.” Working Films and The Fledgling Fund are excited to bring you the…

Ally of the Garbage Dreams Tour, Transition US, Featured in Great Article!

I just came across this great article about the Transition movement. This movement isn’t about sitting around feeling sorry for ourselves because of climate change and peak oil. It’s about doing something, or as the article says, “Transition wants people to envision and create models for that future — and find much to be cheerful about.” I was excited to see the Transition movement getting the attention it deserves, especially because Working Films just recently worked with Transition US to put together a special offer for their supporters who want…

From the Amazon to the Cape Fear: Linking International Stories to Local Action

What do indigenous communities in the Amazon and a rather prosperous coastal town in North Carolina have in common? Not much you might think, and generally you would be right. There are certainly many differences, but it turns out that folks concerned about the environment and public health in Wilmington, North Carolina have much to learn from communities struggling for environmental justice in the Ecuadorian villages featured in the film Crude. A screening of Crude at the Cucalorus Film Festival in Working Films’ hometown of Wilmington, N.C. gave me the…

Students take environmental messages, activism local

Note from Working Films: You can follow the festival live on Twitter: #TfPE09. We’ll also be posting updates on our blog along the way. by Gwen Evans, Nelson Institute The Tales from Planet Earth film festival this weekend, Nov. 6-8, will screen some 50 environmental films from around the world that explore how stories told through film can influence our understanding of, and relationships to, nature. But the festival, organized by the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies, is more than just hunkering down in a dark theater…

Images of the Institute

Although we wrapped up the Content +Intent Documentary Institute just under a month ago, I wanted to take a moment to share some photos from the event in the hopes of giving you a glimpse into the inner workings of the residency and, if you are a filmmaker, peak your interest in participating in future Working Films’ residencies and workshops. The 5 days that we share with filmmakers at MASS MoCA each year is re-energizing for me because I get a chance to interact with both the folks making these…

Building Intention: SavingJackie.org

Filmmaker Selena Burks left the 2006 Working Films Content + Intent Documentary Institute at MASS MoCA feeling charged and armed with the know-how to develop the community engagement campaign for her documentary Saving Jackie. Saving Jackie is a snapshot of a recovering addict’s attempt to strengthen her damaged relationships with her two estranged daughters. Over the course of the documentary, daughter/director Selena Burks revisits life changing events and examines the long-term side effects of abusive behaviors on family relationships. Selena recently shared with me, her thoughts on the residency: I…

MASS MoCA Residency Alum Launches Multimedia Website

As we gear up for the Content + Intent Documentary Institute, Working Films Residency at MASS MoCA for 2009 I have been in touch with alumni of the residency to see what they are up to and find out about ways the residency has influenced their audience engagement efforts. I was very excited when I received an email from ’06 Mass MoCA alum Paula Consolini sharing with me a new educational website that she has built using clips from her film Breaking the Mold. When Paula was at the MASS…

Powerful Trip to Tucson, AZ

Often times we hear on the news about the hundreds of thousands of people crossing into the United States every year, but seldom do we stop to think that among them are young children… 9, 12, 14 years old risking their lives in the desert. On September 27 I was honored to spend the bulk of the day strategizing with incredible activists and organizers about how Children in No Man’s Land can enhance their work to protect the lives and rights of children and other immigrants crossing our southern border.…