About this project
What is "Visions of Mustang"?
Visions of Mustang - a documentary by Daniel Byers and Skyship Films - follows the first surgical eye expedition to enter the Forbidden Kingdom - an intense and ambitious journey into one of the most remote regions of the planet. With the help of 18 monks from the Pematsal monastery, 35 ponies to carry 400 kilos of medical gear, and some rough and tumble doctors from both the USA and Nepal, we set out for the ancient walled city of Lo Manthang. The 23-minute minute documentary will follow the expedition through its trials and triumphs, and share the stories of the people of Mustang on their transformational journey from darkness into light.
The expedition was a success, now we need to tell the story.
Daniel Byers, our filmmaker and editor, came away from the expedition with over 40 hours of beautiful footage, inside and outside of the homes of the Mustangi people, over a thousand photographs (here are some, and some more), dramatic time-lapse photography, and hours of recordings of our monk's beautiful chanting. With those monks - the spiritual leadership of the community - guiding our expedition, we were allowed unbelievable access and intimacy into the lives of our patients.
There's Karchung, who went blind while caring for her dying husband last season, her life brought to the brink of collapse by her inability to care for her goats.
There's a little nun who had the odd distinction of being so farsighted she couldn't see - exploring books for the first time after getting her first pair of glasses.
There are nomadic herders who travelled over a hundred miles of desert to reach the camp, mothers and fathers seeing their children for the first time in ten or twenty years, and monks coming home to their families after years away at the monastery.
Why do we need money?
While we were able to get our funding for the expedition itself, producing a good independent film (and keeping it independent) will take a lot of work - and we somehow must make rent while doing it. Things like music rights, DVD printing, screening fees, and production help all cost money. To weave the tapestry that will make this film as good as it can be, we need your help! Donations will go to some of the following:
- hiring local musicians from the Tibetan music community to provide the soundtrack
- hiring a professional sound mixer
- paying local Mustangi musicians for the use of their music
- hiring a motion graphics artist to create our titling and animations, and an assistant editor to help organize the many hours of footage
- designing and printing DVDs
- making rent and (maybe even) enough to feed ourselves during the edit
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