This month at 92Y Tribeca, our STORY LEADS TO ACTION series will celebrate two films in our REEL FOOD initiative: What’s on Your Plate?: two years and running with extraordinary impact and more to come, and Pipe Fire, just starting it’s engagement campaign.

What’s On Your Plate? is a witty and thought-provoking documentary about kids and food politics produced and directed by award-winning Catherine Gund, and co-produced by her daughter Sadie Rain Hope-Gund and her daughter’s friend Safiyah Kai Russell Riddle. Filmed over the course of one year, the film follows these two eleven-year-old city kids as they explore their place in the food chain. Sadie and Safiyah take a close look at food systems in New York City and its surrounding areas. With the camera as their companion, the girl guides talk to each other, food activists, farmers, new friends, storekeepers, their families, and the viewer, in their quest to understand what’s on all of our plates. The girls address questions regarding the origin of the food they eat, how it’s cultivated, how many miles it travels from the harvest to their plate, how it’s prepared, who prepares it, and what is done afterwards with the packaging and leftovers. The process leads the two friends to formulate sophisticated and compassionate opinions on the state of their society, and by doing so inspire hope and active engagement in others.

Filmmaker Catherine Gund and Mary Jeys, the film’s outreach coordinator, will be in attendance to share the film’s trailer and an education module and talk about the campaign’s impact. Invited guests to this celebration on the film’s success will include the educators, nonprofit partners, and individual campaign participants who have put the film and web project to work.

We will also be joined by Jessica Oreck, producer/writer/director of Pipe Fire. We’ll screen the trailer for this feature work-in-progress, which presents one year in the life of traditional reindeer herders in Finnish Lapland and illuminates an unfamiliar bond between man and nature. It tracks the Aatsinkis family through their seasonal routines as they catch and mark the new reindeer calves in the spring, herd newborns and adults in the summer, and slaughter them for food and pelts as well as mass consumption in the fall.

Both of these New York based projects will have just participated in our Reel Food residency. Judith Helfand, co-founder of Working Films and Chicken & Egg Pictures, will lead a lively and interactive discussion with the directors, invited guests, and YOU, the audience, about the success of What’s on the Plate, the promise of Pipe Fire and the outcomes of the Reel Food residency. Both these films present great case studies on how to balance the needs of a character-driven film with the needs of local, regional and global advocacy campaigns, with a focus on local efforts in New York City.

Come be part of it, we hope to see you there!

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