Documentary of Katherine Holden,70, climbing into tall canopies of threatened pristine forests in Madre de Dios, Peru's Amazon region.
THE DOCUMENTARY:Madre de Dios, Peru, is tangled in a perfect storm of old growth forest devastation. Threatened by illegal logging and gold mining, the magnificent mahogany trees and other prime species are dwindling fast and with them the habitat of many species, as well as hidden tribes. Quick-cut roads used to illegally take the trees start a fragmentation pattern that adds to wildness destruction. The Madre de Dios river harbors enough gold to lure thousands of most illegal gold miners who use mercury to separate flakes of gold from river silt. Now people, water, fish, fowl, and trees find the poisonous mercury flowing through their veins and up the food chain. Katherine Holden (WildTreeWalker) turns 70 this June and is on a mission. In training for several months, she will soon climb very tall trees in Peru. The camera will follow her as she faces the physical challenges of climbing, the unknown dangers of snakes, biting insects, and unwelcoming officials. But the heart of the documentary will explore what's going on in the rain forest, talking to indigenous people, campaigners, and those just trying to survive even if for them that means chopping down trees. The film has no intention in laying blame at the local level. People need to eat, and it's not on site that big money is made. Neither will the film shy away from challenging those who are responsible and those who buy the wood, gold, and other resources. Katherine's tree climbing will give the documentary a focus and a framework that offers an unusual way in to examine what the loss of earth's treasure will mean to the species that live withing the forest and, ultimately, to people. This is also the area in Peru where the new international highway linking Atlantic ports in Brazil with Pacific ports in Peru is paving its way to completion. This means natural resources on a massive scale will flow from Peru and Brazil to Asian markets.
THE AIM: The aim is to get the documentary as widely distributed as possible. We are talking to environmental NGO's(non-governmental agencies) who will use the film as part of outreach work. There will be an extended DVD with extra footage and out takes for direct to home sale. We are in conversation with a major distributor who will market the documentary as an acquisition to European, American, and international broadcasters. We intend to shoot in broadcast standard. The documentary will also be submitted to appropriate film festivals.
A WORD FROM KATHERINE: Nearly a year ago a really big idea came to me. In one sentence, my life's purpose arrived. Climbing Trees at Seventy: One Woman's Quest to Save Wild Trees. I immediately said "Yes" then drove 1800 miles to take tree-climbing courses. Becoming WildTreeWalker is the perfect summation of my seven decades, blending my strong environmental interests with the opportunity to give back to life. From the canopies of pristine trees in Peru, I'll use my unique voice, literally that of an old woman in the branches, to listen to and illuminate the beauty and bounty of life they harbor, and the growing threats to their survival. I'm putting everything I have into this; environmental commitment, enthusiasm, time, energy, and, most of all, my desire to help speak for the trees. One part of this quest involves trying to get locals up into the branches of their wild trees. Imagine a gold miner, or logger, or local politician, climbing into ancient trees (of course with help!) and describing their feelings from a higher vantage point. I'd love to assist a member of an indigenous tribe as she ascends a tall ceiba tree, able to see the total range of her historic homeland for the first time. I'm wide open so that the heart of the story, from deep within the forest, and from every possible angle, reaches you!
WHY DONATE: There is something magical about this project, beginning with the idea itself, arriving unbidden, and that Katherine never thought to say no. People she meets, of all ages, have an immediate reaction of "Yes!" when they hear about Katherine's quest. Please join her, WildTreeWalker, and be a part of this extraordinary excursion into the heart of wildness in Madre de Dios, Peru. Feel the satisfaction of knowing you are playing an integral part in giving our ancient trees a solid voice, a voice that will echo throughout the forest and the world. We are all here on Planet Earth together. Madre de Dios-Mother of God, indeed! You can follow Katherine on her blog www.wildtreewalker.com, on Twitter, and on her wildtreewalker page on Facebook.
How Kickstarter Works: We need your help to make this film. On the right you'll see the pledge levels with corresponding rewards. You can donate to our project by simply clicking the green "back this project" button, and receive rewards in return. We have set a goal that accurately reflects what we need to make this film. The only way to make this film is to reach our goal. Otherwise no funds are distributed. Your donation is only charged to your credit card when our goal has been reached.
THE TEAM: Photographer Drew Fulton is an expert at capturing shy wildlife. Filmmaker Hazel Chandler works around the world in remote and difficult regions on sensitive subjects. Katherine is passionate about wildness and is committing the rest of her life to doing whatever she can to spread the word about the splendor of wild forests. Together the team will produce stunning wildlife footage, a new take on deforestation, an insight into competing forces pulling our forests apart, and a personal story of one woman's defiance in old age.
Have a question? If the info above doesn't help, you can ask the project creator directly.
pledged of $24,400 goal
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Funding Unsuccessful This project reached the deadline without achieving its funding goal on April 24, 2012.
Mar 14, 2012 - Apr 24, 2012
Pledge $5 or more
Thank you personal email from Wild Tree WalkerEstimated delivery: May 2012
Pledge $10 or more
Thank you on Wild Tree Walker's blogEstimated delivery: May 2012
Pledge $25 or more
Set of four 4x6 signed photos from Peruvian excursion plus digital movie delivery of completed film, plus thank you on Wild Tree Walker's blogEstimated delivery: Aug 2012
Pledge $50 or more
All the above plus large 8x10" signed print from Peruvian excursion and signed DVD of completed film.Estimated delivery: Aug 2012
Pledge $100 or more
All the above plus digital slide show set to music of Katherine's photographs from Peru. (I have a great eye!)Estimated delivery: Aug 2012
Pledge $200 or more
All the above plus a phone call from Katherine thanking you (USA and Canada only). I'll answer questions and tell you of unusual Peruvian experiences.Estimated delivery: Aug 2012
Pledge $500 or more
All the above plus listed as film sponsor on film credits.Estimated delivery: Aug 2012
Pledge $1,000 or more
0 backers Limited (10 of 10 left)
All the above plus facilitated tree climb in Ithaca, NY, for up to two people, with Drew Fulton, accredited tree climbing instructor. Travel and accommodations not includedEstimated delivery: Sep 2012
Pledge $2,500 or more
0 backers Limited (10 of 10 left)
All the above plus US air fare paid to Ithaca, NY for facilitated tree climbing experience for two people.Estimated delivery: Sep 2012
Pledge $4,500 or more
0 backers Limited (4 of 4 left)
All the above plus dinner for six at restaurant in your home town with Katherine and Drew in attendance.Estimated delivery: Oct 2012
Pledge $6,000 or more
Katherine will take you to Peru to experience where the team went!Estimated delivery: Dec 2012