About this project
What We're About
On the heels of producing the widely acclaimed, The Joe We Know, Eric Porterfield felt compelled to bring some of the nation's most skilled filmmakers together to create a film about a year in the life of Happy Valley.
During 2011 and 2012, the story of the Jerry Sandusky made news throughout the world. The story that stayed in the headlines for months, and turned a sleepy borough into the center of the media world, proved more than just a story of child abuse.
In short, the mobs had gathered; waving notions of providence and righteousness while clamoring for more macbre details related to the personal destruction of the many lives involved in this case. People without any stake in the premise or outcome of the Sandusky story had become veritable witnesses, lawyers, jury members and executioners. All within the context of a “story”.
Despite the conformists’ insistence that “Happy Valley” now be defined by this single, albeit complex, occasion of Sandusky’s horrific acts, the people who have remained the most calm and sensible are the people who lived amongst the tragedy.
This film is not an analysis of innocence or guilt, fair or unfair. It is a peek into the science of how perfectly reasonable human beings are capable of being perfectly unreasonable, to the point of being careless. And how they move forward within that context.
This film will walk away from absolutes. This film will draw a wide range of viewers, we believe, by looking critically at where, when and how matters spun into the larger issues and story. With the benefit of time (365 days), the film will provide an intimate look at State College and Penn State University’s “family” as they move out from under the shadow of the Sandusky trial.
All the while, and critical to note, the film will also be watching the town of State College doing what it does best: being a college town to tens of thousands of young people who have ventured to this place -- with all the hope in the world that this place will be their first independent step into a life filled with promise and light.
And so, “365 Days” will be a “year-in-the-life” look into State College: its people, its surroundings, and its embracing of the best qualities of the human spirit.
Why We Need Support
We're not accomplishing an easy task here. We're doing what no one else has done - try to make sense of everything that's happened in State College after the Jerry Sandusky scandal shattered a way of life. Our goal as filmmakers is to look at the community and see how State College is continuing its journey. To do this properly takes time - and lots of it. That's why we've been shooting since September 1, 2012 and we won't stop until August 31, 2013. Your support is vital to this goal. We secured enough funding to get through the first six months of shooting, but our six month point just passed by.
To keep filming, we need your support. Here is a breakdown of where your $50,000 will be going:
- Crew Funding - $10,000
- Asset and Footage Management - $10,000
- Travel Costs - $5,000
- Gear Leases - $5,000
- Editing and Post Production - $20,000
365 in the News
Check out some of the press we've already been receiving about our project!
- Eric Porterfield on WCNS Radio -- Link to SoundCloud (WCNS)
- 365 Days on Central PA Live -- Link to YouTube (WTAJ)
- ‘365 Days' Documentary 'Going Where the Story Takes Us (Centre Daily Times)
- An Interview with Erik Proulx, director of “365 Days: A Year in Happy Valley” (City State Arts)
- Documentary to highlight 'A Year in Happy Valley' (The Daily Collegian)
- 365 Days: A Year in Happy Valley Preview (Onward State)
- 'Lemonade' Producer to Explore Aftermath of Sandusky Trial (Adrants)
Who We Are
Our Executive Producer, Eric Porterfield of Port Matilda, PA, has more than 20 years of video production experience behind him. Most recently, Eric directed "The Joe We Know" (www.grandexperiment.org), a film that talked with more than 70 of Joe Paterno's former lettermen in five cities during two weeks in January 2012. He created a film that celebrated Joe Paterno's legacy -- the legacy that he left behind in his lettermen.
Director Erik Proulx's films focus on people and communities overcoming adversity. His first documentary, "Lemonade," followed 16 creative advertising professionals who lost their jobs during the Great Recession, then turned their creativity inward to discover the happiest and most prosperous period of their lives. It has been shown in festivals around the world and was featured on CBS Evening News with Katie Couric, NPR’s “On Point” with Tom Ashbrook, ABC News with Tory Johnson, and several other national media outlets.
His follow up to Lemonade is Lemonade: Detroit, which examines the reinvention of a great American city that no longer can define itself simply as the "Motor City." Erik knows how to tell the type of story we're working on here at "365 Days: A Year in Happy Valley"
What We've Done
We have already spoken with dozens of people in the State College community. Some lifelong residents, former football players, business owners and current students to get a feel for how the town of State College is continuing its journey beyond everything that happened here in November 2011.
What You Get
Why Can't I Download the Film?
When you donate $25, you'll get a limited 24 hour protected access to view the completed film. In order to distribute this film to theaters across the mid-Atlantic states and potentially sell to a network, we can't give out copies of the film. Theaters aren't interested in showing films people can already watch at home on their DVD or BluRay player.
However, we want to make sure those of you who don't live in the northeast can still have the opportunity to see the film. So, if you want to see what we're all about, please donate at least $25 to get an opportunity to see the film when it comes out in December!
Details about where and when you can see it online will come out closer to December. Right now, we're planning on releasing it to you at the same time of the world premiere in State College, PA. Consider the $25 gift your invitation to the virtual premiere!
Risks and challenges
No documentary is immune from challenges -- we know that. But we have the right team in place to ensure that this documentary finds its way to audiences in theaters across Pennsylvania and mid-Atlantic states in December 2013. Our producer has decades of experience in television and our director has prior film experience telling the type of story we're featuring in "365 Days". With their combined experience, they can manage production costs and schedule time properly to make sure this film makes its debut at the end of the year.
However, there's always the potential for something to go awry. In the final editing stages, a lot of collaboration is needed between the editor, producer, director and music composer. Thankfully, in the case of 365 Days: A Year in Happy Valley, our producer and editor have worked together successfully in the past to create The Joe We Know (www.grandexperiment.org). Our director Erik knows how to tell the type of story we're working on here at "365 Days: A Year in Happy Valley" with his past films, including Lemonade (www.lemonademovie.com) and Lemonade: Detroit (www.lemonadedetroit.com)
With all of our footage stored on hard drives at the farmhouse, there's always the potential for a drive to go bad. Fortunately, we have it backed up in a RAID configuration so that if a drive goes bad, we can replace it and not lose any data.
There is always the chance for setbacks as we go into the post-production phases of the film, but with so many safeguards in place, we feel pretty confident we can meet our December 2013 deadline. After all, we want to share the finished product with you all as soon as possible!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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