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Can one young girl break the cycle of poverty and prejudice through surfing - in Bangladesh?

 This film touches on the current conversation about youth culture, women’s rights, the clash and complement between east and west. This film challenges us to examine our own expectations of what is fair, just and what is possible in this world for any of us.

“When I surf... I can finally just be happy and forget about all my problems on land.”

The Most Fearless is a documentary film in production and a dynamic, universally accessible true story. A film about youth, hope, and surfing; full of compelling characters,set in an exotic location, and rich with contemporary global cultural relevance.

We started this project over a year ago and are halfway through production, with a planned release date in late 2014. We are looking to you to help us fund what we anticipate will be our final production trip in the Spring of 2014. This production trip will coincide with an international surf contest at Cox's Bazaar where Nasima and her friends will compete. By being able to commit production resources prior to, during and after this major event we will be able to fully tell the story of Nasima, her community and friends. 

We are actively pursuing all financing options - and have secured a distributor -  but timing is everything. To keep up the momentum, and to keep this an independent production for as long as possible is why we are stoked to do this kickstarter campaign now. We hope that you too will see what a great story this is and support our project.

THE MOST FEARLESS IN THE MEDIA:

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http://www.surfertoday.com/surfing/8404-the-girl-who-isnt-allowed-to-surf

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jaimal-yogis/fearless-girls_b_1862486.html

http://www.surfline.com/video/trailers/the-most-fearless_96383

THE MOST FEARLESS TEAM:

Heather Kessinger: Director/Producer
Nick Ware: Executive Producer
Molly Celaschi : Producer
Jaimal Yogis : Writer
Jordan Dozzi : Director of Photography
Ellen Bruno : Editor

OVERCOMING THE FEAR (the story): In Bangladesh, 80% of the population lives on less than $2 per day, approximately half the children are stunted from malnutrition- a condition caused by the low social status of their women. Nasima  was born at the very bottom.

At seven, Nasima was abandoned by her family after refusing to beg in the street. Later, alone and wandering her hometown’s filthy beach,she saw a man walking—“flying”—across the Indian Ocean’s rolling breakers. It was Jafar Alam, Bangladesh’s first surfer, and whatever he was doing, Nasima wanted to try.

Over the next seven years, Jafar, Nasima, and a few local surfers formed the ragtag “Bangladesh Surf Club.” The club became Nasima’s refuge and family. Unable to afford school, surfing became her life, a rare joy that allowed her to escape the poverty, sickness, and corruption around her. The boys in the club –many of them homeless like her – became her brothers. Surfing daily for hours, Nasima got unusually good – fast.

But even surfing fully clothed, Nasima was taunted, teased and abused by the men who called her a whore for going in the water. When other girls started following her lead and joining the club,fundamentalist clerics declared surfing officially forbidden. But Nasima’s perseverance and talent finally paid off when, as a 14-year-old girl, she shocked judges by beating the best of the boys in a locals-only contest with her athletic and joyful surfing style. The win earned her about $100 US dollars –more than a month’s salary in Bangladesh.

But by the following year, Nasima’s dream of surfing professionally was growing dim. After years of absence, her parents suddenly returned to claim the prize money. The club, Nasima’s only family, found itself breaking apart. And she was pregnant after a hasty marriage to a 17-year-old local boy whose conservative family forbid Nasima to continue surfing.

They tried to keep her away from the water, but it could not work. She announced her plans to compete in the next competition even while still pregnant. But just weeks before the competition, a miscarriage sent Nasima into the hospital. Lying in pain and still bleeding, Nasima knows she isn’t well enough to compete when contest day comes. But defying all expectations—including her own—she somehow finds the strength and enters anyway. And wins.

Now, Nasima is sixteen—willful,talented, beautiful, and uncertain as she looks to the future. The Most Fearless is the story of Nasima and her friends,the young surfers of Bangladesh, challenging the world on their own terms, and inspiring us along the way.

Risks and challenges Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

As always with documentary film, there is the risk that something will happen with characters or location that can put the whole project in jeopardy. We are confident that if we remain flexible and open to however the story unfolds before us that 'The Most Fearless' will be an important and film - making a difference for Nasima and even for all of us in some small way.

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    16 backers

    A heartfelt THANKS! and a mention on The Most Fearless social media and official website.

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    6 backers

    The Most Fearless bumper sticker (see our awesome logo designed by Noel Lopez of Digerata.net), plus above perks.

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    A digital download of The Most Fearless documentary feature film. (Film completion estimated to be Dec 2014, other perks will ship earlier).

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    8x10 COLOR STILL from our upcoming shoot in Bangladesh, plus the above perks. (Film completion estimated to be Dec 2014, other perks will ship earlier).

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    13 backers Limited (12 left of 25)

    Be one of the first to get the new children's book 'Turtles Don't Surf' just off the press, and autographed by author Jaimal Yogis! Plus sticker + digital download - and our sincere thanks in participating in getting this film made! (Film completion estimated to be Dec 2014 - other perks will ship earlier).

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    An copy of Jaimal Yogis' BOOK 'Saltwater Buddha: A Surfer's Quest to Find Zen on the Sea' (yes, great reviews and 5 stars on Amazon) AND an 8x10 COLOR STILL from our upcoming shoot in Bangladesh, plus above perks. (Film completion estimated to be Dec 2014, other perks will ship earlier).

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    Meet the creators of the film with an invitation to a SNEAK PEAK 'work in progress screening' in SF Bay Area, plus digital download of completed film. Note that screening will be held in early summer 2014 in the SF Bay Area. (Does not include transportation, film completion estimated to be Dec 2014, other perks will ship earlier)

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    Another GREAT BOOK just published this year by Jaimal Yogis, get your autographed copy of 'The Fear Project: What Our Most Primal Emotion Taught Me About Survival, Success, Surfing . . . and Love'. AND COPY of The Most Fearless documentary on DVD. (Film completion estimated to be Dec 2014, other perks will ship earlier)

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    16 backers

    A limited edition 'The Most Fearless' T-SHIRT! (Check out our awesome logo by Noel Lopez of Digerata.net) AND a 16x20 COLOR PHOTOGRAPH from our upcoming shoot. (Film completion estimated to be Dec 2014, other perks will ship earlier).

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    2 TICKETS to "The Most Fearless Friends & Family" Premiere and Launch Party in San Francisco. Includes appetizers and drinks! AND digital download or DVD of the film when it's completed . (Transportation not included, film completion estimated to be Dec 2014, other perks will ship earlier).

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    A 2-HOUR SURF LESSON from our very own Director of Photography, Jordan Dozzi, in Northern California. Includes wet suit rental and a board - and yes you can be an absolute beginner to expert! (transportation not included, dates and exact location tbd). Plus other perks of course, heartfelt thanks, digital download, awesome tshirt, sticker and 8x10 color photo! (Film completion estimated to be Dec 2014, other perks will ship earlier).

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    3 backers

    An ADVANCE COPY BOOK of the photography collection from 'The Most Fearless'. In addition to production stills, the book will include portraits and 'behind the scenes' images and stories not included in the film. And, as always, other perks of course, our sincere thanks, digital download, sticker and separate 8x10 color photo! (note, book will come out at the same time as the film - other perks can ship earlier)

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    TWO HOUR SURF LESSON WITH JORDAN DOZZI, our amazingly talented cinematographer, AND An ADVANCE COPY BOOK of the photography collection from 'The Most Fearless'. AND TWO TICKETS TO THE BAY AREA FREINDS AND FAMILY SCREENING! In addition to production stills, the book will include portraits and 'behind the scenes' images and stories not included in the film. And, as always, other perks of course, our sincere thanks, digital download, sticker and separate 8x10 color photo! (note, book will come out at the same time as the film - other perks can ship earlier).

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    7 backers

    SPECIAL THANKS on The Most Fearless DVD and on screen, not a tiny digital screen, not a silkscreen - but the final copy of the finished film theater screen!. And, as always, other perks of course, our sincere thanks, digital download, awesome tshirt, sticker and 8x10 color photo! (Film completion estimated to be Dec 2014, other perks will ship earlier).

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    0 backers Limited (2 left of 2)

    WE WILL SHIP YOU OUR VERY OWN amazingly talented cinematographer JORDAN DOZZI for a TWO HOUR SURF OR SNOWBOARD LESSON (with in the united states only) PLUS: AN ADVANCE COPY BOOK of the photography collection from 'The Most Fearless'. PLUS: TWO TICKETS TO THE BAY AREA FREINDS AND FAMILY SCREENING! In addition to production stills, the book will include portraits and 'behind the scenes' images and stories not included in the film, digital download, and more (note, book will come out at the same time as the film - other perks can ship earlier - shipping of Jordan will need to be scheduled separately).

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    1 backer Limited (1 left of 2)

    CUSTOM JUTE SURFBOARD made locally in Cox's Bazaar, Bangladesh, by the surfers in The Most Fearless. Plus other perks of course, heartfelt thanks, digital download, awesome tshirt, sticker and 16x20 color photo! Pretty much whatever you like from our above list of perks. Undying gratitude - did we say that already? (Film completion estimated to be Dec 2014, other perks will ship earlier).

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    0 backers Limited (2 left of 2)

    THREE (3) 2-HOUR SURF LESSONS in Bangladesh from Nasima and her surf club friends, DURING FILM PRODUCTION! LITERALLY BE A PART OF THIS FILM! Room and board accommodations, for 4 days! Trip is tentatively late spring 2014, final dates tbd (airfare not included). Plus our heartfelt thanks, digital download, awesome tshirt, sticker and 8x10 color photo! Pretty much whatever you like from our above list of perks (with the exception of the surfboard - but ok, we can talk about the surfboard). Undying gratitude - let's say that just one more time! (Film completion estimated to be Dec 2014, other perks will ship earlier).

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Funding period

- (34 days)