This film was born on August 5th, 2012 when a lone gunman walked into the Sikh Temple of Wisconsin - the temple that Amardeep's family helped found, and where he and his family worshipped every Sunday.
By the time the deranged shooter was put down by police, six beautiful people had been killed. Among them was Amardeep's father, Satwant Singh Kaleka - who was shot multiple times while heroically battling with the shooter with nothing more than a butter knife in his hand.
In the days that followed, Amardeep stepped into the public eye as an advocate for peace. But personally, he never stopped struggling to face his anger and understand why this could ever have happened.
Now, to find an answer, Amardeep - a documentary filmmaker - gathers his crew and sets out on a journey to bring together other Peacemakers - survivors of violence, reformed criminals, advocates and researchers - who are all breaking ground in studying violence and creating solutions.
Together, they are tackling issues like gun control, mental health, education, media, and child-caregiver relations.
With a new understanding of the small steps we can take to make a difference, they unite to launch education campaigns and political movements, and ultimately come closer to peace with their own tragic losses.
WATCH THE TRAILER HERE:
As the events unfolded following August 5th, our crew had cameras rolling - knowing that someday this film would be made. Now, after spending our own time, energy, and money, we've been able to gather about 60% of the film - spending time with researchers from Stanford, survivors of the Columbine and Tuscon Safeway shootings, politicians and lobbyists in DC, violence experts, authors, and even esteemed civil rights leaders like the Reverend Al Sharpton and Congressman John Lewis.
HERE IS A SAMPLE OF THE FILM THUS FAR:
INCENTIVES MADE EASY - CHEAT SHEET
But we're not done yet! Even as our editor works daily to craft this journey into a 100 minute film, we still have several important shoots we are missing.
* We need to travel to London and meet with esteemed neurobiologist, author and criminology expert Adrian Raine. He's already picked out a date, and we've found couches to crash on. We just need the money to fly there and shoot his interview for the film! He has amazing things to say about biology and violence.
* We also need to travel to Texas to meet with Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords - who was shot at the Tuscon Safeway and now, after a remarkable recovery, has become a spokesperson against gun violence. She and her foundation have already agreed for the interview.
* We're planning to go deep into Milwaukee prisons, roll with the man who is running gangs in South Central LA, visit with Ameena Matthews - a former criminal and current violence interruptor in inner city Chicago, and learn about how mental illness impacts crime from forensic criminologist Kathy Siefert. All of these shoots cost us in crew, travel and time... but we're looking for real, serious answers and this is how to find them.
* After all of this shooting, we definitely need backers to help us pay the editor - because her task is not small! We've shot over 200 hours of footage already and it's got to be strung together into the best 100 minutes possible to truly get the country's attention and inspire change.
* Backers also help us pay for things like sound design, graphics, animation, music composition and licensing - adding those critical pieces that'll really polish this film and get it noticed at major festivals and by distributors.
We've set a goal of $14,000 which will just be enough to cover a couple more critical shoots... but we are hoping to raise even more so we can meet all of the goals above.
This is a highly personal project for Amardeep and the other victims and survivors who are now a part of it... we'd like to do it all on our own dime, but the reality of film production is that things cost a LOT of money - and major studios don't want to back a project that could be controversial.
After all, they profit from violence in our society. So we're turning to you guys to join the movement and consider backing us. Every contribution counts!
NEVERENDING LIGHT PRODUCTIONS DEMO REEL: Led by Emmy Award winning director Amardeep Kaleka, we are a socially conscious and internationally focused production company located in Los Angeles, CA. Past documentaries include Sirius (2013), Jacob's Turn (2011) & Getting Up: The Tempt One Story (2012), alongside feature films Baby Blues (2008) and Wamba (2010).
PEACEMAKERS CLIPS: These samples of some of our cast members gives you an idea of whose story you are helping us tell.
1 - NARYDNE JEFFRIES
This mother of drive-by shooting victim Brishell Jones is trying to change our flawed justice system.
2 - COLIN GODDARD
This Virginia Tech Survivor is now a lobbyist for closing gun regulation loopholes, and is currently working for the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence in Washington DC.
3 - MAYOR MICHAEL BLOOMBERG
New York mayor and founder of Mayors Against Illegal Guns. Here's an excerpt from his Town Hall Meeting following the Sandy Hook shooting, where he invited Amardeep and other survivors to take the floor with him.
4 - DALE WEISS
This 2nd grade teacher and PhD in Education is helping us create a curriculum to promote socio-emotional development and peaceful communities in schools.
5 - "A SPARK IN THE DARK"
For the 50th Anniversary of MLK's "I Have A Dream Speech", some of our Peacemakers marched alongside thousands of others in Washington DC. The following is a speech recorded by Amardeep Kaleka, director of Peacemakers, following this event.
Much love and peace out,
Risks and challenges
This is a passion project for Amardeep and his crew, and we will produce this film no matter what it takes. We have numerous contacts and networks in the film distribution world ready and waiting to help us push this product out into the mainstream. But it is a heavy lift - more so because we are trying not only to make a film, but also find real solutions we can put into practice. We will be creating an educational curriculum, leading political movements, and backing university-level research. Thus, our challenge is simply to gather as much support as we can from the community - every step of the way to push this mission even farther and take the opportunity finally solve the violence epidemic in our nation.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (31 days)