Pledge rewards are provided by Opening Minds through Art (OMA), a Scripps intergenerational art program for people with dementia (www.scrippsoma.org)
AGELESS ART - Concept Trailer
With a documentary, you're looking for a series of candid and amazing moments you can string together and build into an incredible story. Just being with some of these folks with dementia or Alzheimer's (including my grandfather, Harold Applebaum) is just that. These creative expression programs should not be just a way to occupy someone's time in a care facility; rather they should be a necessity, a basic human right, a tool to unlock our loved ones through the arts.
The creations you will see in this film are done using paintbrush, storytelling, dance, and music. These programs are failure free, meaning everyone can succeed regardless of cognitive impairment. No one has to remember or recall anything. They can simply use their imagination and are valued for that.
This is not just a documentary, it is to be a community film. We interview experts in academic settings, student volunteers connecting with an increasingly isolated generation, care facility staff members and professionals in the medical field. At the core of the documentary portion of the film are our elders with dementia who are the screenplay writers, the dreamers, the creators. We'll travel the country (and perhaps the world) to find these artists involved in creative expression programs and use these creations as inspiration for narrative short films that will be woven into the documentary. These pieces will be adapted, directed, shot and edited by completely autonomous filmmaking teams. The end result will be a fascinating collaboration of brilliant minds- some who are world leading experts in their respective fields, some who cannot even remember their own names.
With Alzheimer's and other forms of dementia, we can never go back to the way it was- and that's heartbreaking- but we do have the power to journey to fantastic new places...together. There is still value, there is still a human being, and, like all of us, there is an incredible artist inside.
For our mothers and fathers, grandmothers and grandfathers, aunts and uncles, friends and spouses. Thank you for being a part of something special.
Risks and challenges
A lot of indie movies suffer because they're trying to do too much too fast without a lot of money. Luckily, time is on our side. We'd rather do it right than fast. I intend to keep an online production log for our backers so they can follow along on this journey. And for those backers who are only in it for the sweet rewards, fear not, but be patient. While most rewards will be fulfilled on or before estimated delivery date, the last reward to go out will be the finished film itself. When that is, we cannot say, but the estimated completion date for the film is sometime in 2014.
We already have many hours of footage shot, so we've established a filmmaking protocol on how to best capture these documentary moments. We look forward to filming different programs in many locations. One thing that I've learned as a producer is that the pre-production process is just as important as the filming. With a great team behind me, I am sure that we are up to this challenge.
When the narrative phase of this project kicks in, we will begin the more cinematic process and start to adapt our stories from the documentary materials. The risks and challenges are locking down cast, directors, editors, visual FX artists, etc. and trying to achieve a cohesive feel with a few different, autonomous movie crews filming under the umbrella of one project. With our experience in narrative film (from feature to short to music video), these are obstacles that can be overcome so that all teams can succeed.
You might be asking "what about getting these artists on camera?" We have received permission from the facilities and the artists or their guardians for all footage to date. In fact, they have enjoyed being filmed and all facilities approached have welcomed us. It has been an incredible experience. We expect this heartwarming trend to continue.
Finally, the D word: Distribution. Obviously, everyone wants to play at Cannes and Sundance and be "discovered." We're obviously shooting for those stars, but the aim of this film project is public awareness. We're not looking for a blockbuster sale, rather a campaign platform to introduce the world to the power of creative expressions programs for people with Alzheimer's or other forms of dementia. If we have to self-distribute, we will do so. Certainly a major challenge down the road will be to find the best home for the completed project. Likely a combination of film festival and film buyer leads will provide the best avenue to achieve our goal.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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