It’s DocDay Wednesday and we have the story of a TV journalist who lost it all. Here’s his story of going from a high-paying job to sleeping on a bench.
Ed Mitchell is a former Reuters, BBC and ITN TV journalist who filed for bankruptcy and lost everything in 2007. Making the News reflects on a period of life when Ed was homeless, living on Brighton’s seafront.
A disabled man named Agustin in Honduras has been building a helicopter in his home for the past 53 years causing controversy amongst his family and community. Some wonder if he is crazy. Other see him as inspirational. Some believe he is wasting his time. But for Agustin, the helicopter has become a way to cope with his debilitating polio as he painstakingly crafts the homemade flying machine. But will it fly?
TeamJaded loves space. We love Neil DeGrasse Tyson. We love space shows on TV. We love astronauts. And in honor of our friend Whit Scott‘s aunt, Sally Ride, we present this documentary for Doc-Day Wednesday. Sally Ride was the first woman, as well as the youngest person to enter space. She was a role mode, a national hero, and continues to inspire even after her death. She passed away on July 23rd, 2012 after a 17 month battle with pancreatic cancer. Our thoughts go out to Whit and his family.
Sally was an avid supporter of science education and space exploration. We assume she would be down with this doc.
If you want to support Fight For Space, you have until August 19th, 2012. They still have a long way to go, and any amount helps. Watch the trailer above. Seriously, it’s a great trailer.
Since the Apollo era of the 1960s, NASA’s budget has been shrinking and our ambitions in space have been decreasing. We are producing a documentary that will examine the reasons why our space program is not all it can be. We are also going to show that space IS worth the time, money, and energy that it needs, not for only exploration and scientific reasons but for economic, planetary security, and cultural reasons as well. We will also be covering the great scientific achievements that NASA is making right now, and we will be examining the new commercial space enterprise by companies like SpaceX, Sierra Nevada, Bigelow, and more. Many problems have occurred in just the past 10 years that have lead to the consistent underfunding of NASA, the cancellation of multiple space systems, and the decline of America’s role in space.
We are not producing your average space documentary where we show restored footage from the moon landings and CGI galaxy renderings. We are covering the real political and economic issues of the recent past, today, and tomorrow. We are covering both sides of the argument and we promise to produce a fair and objective film.
You MUST support @waitingstories on @kickstarter. Seriously. We had the chance to capture the film’s director, Peter Nicks, at the San Francisco International Film Festival back in April this year. What an incredible film this is! Touching, inspiring, informative, beautiful. It’s all these things and more.
You only have 17 days left to support this project. It will only be funded if their goal is reached by Sunday July 29th, 2012! Click here for more info.
Here is the cut of the SFIFF’s Scoop Du Jour which features Peter Nicks and The Waiting Room.
By supporting this project, they say:
Your help will allow us to:
- Promote our theatrical release in NY, LA, San Francisco and Oakland through a grassroots promotional campaign! The more successful the release, higher the visibility of the film and the more communities we can bring it to.
- Give access to communities that typically do not go to the theaters to watch an indie documentary. Since this film is about their community, we will partner with local and national organizations to hold sponsor screenings that will allow some to attend for free.
- Cover the logistical costs incurred by our non-profit Open’hood in pulling this whole thing off.
Here is the theatrical trailer:
About Peter Nicks:
Peter Nicks is an Emmy Award-winning documentary filmmaker who has produced projects for network, cable and public television exploring topics such as immigration, journalism and technology. He has also directed media strategy for two social networking start-ups and developed transmedia storytelling projects that make use of emerging social media platforms. He worked as a staff producer for ABC News in New York and as a producer for the innovative PBS documentary series Life 360. Nicks is currently producing and directing the documentary-social media hybrid The Waiting Room, which explores the impact of America’s health care policy on one county hospital and the population of largely uninsured patients it serves. Peter Nicks earned his Masters in documentary filmmaking from the University of California, Berkeley in 1999. He lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with his wife and two children.
About the film.
Calvin & Hobbes dominated the comics in thousands of newspapers for a decade, but when the strip’s creator, Bill Watterson, retired the strip in 1995, readers everywhere felt the void left by the departure of Calvin & his tiger, and many fans would never find a satisfactory replacement.
Newspaper readership and book sales can be tracked and recorded, but the human impact Bill Watterson has had and the value and significance of his art are perhaps impossible to measure.
This film is not a quest to find Watterson, who prefers his privacy. It is an exploration to discover why his ‘simple’ comic strip made such an impact on so many readers in the 80s and 90s, and why it still means so much to us today.
Do I Need This examines our culture’s excessive, often questionable acquisition of possessions and asks the viewer to stop and examine what they buy and whether they actually need what they are purchasing – does your newborn really need that baby wipe warmer? Does your dog need another overpriced squeeky toy…do you need that hot dog cooker you found in the Sky Mall catalog…will that uncomfortable pair of new shoes be a good idea simply because they were on sale?
Using humor, quirky and engaging characters, and no preaching, Do I Need This pushes viewers to think beyond today, beyond the instant gratification of walking away with a shopping bag or carload of stuff and to look at the impacts of our endless world of purchases, on ourselves as well as on our planet. The film will engage viewers who may not view themselves as environmentalists but can still make a world of difference with changes to their buying habits.
The Waiting Room won the Audience Award for Best Documentary Feature at San Francisco International Film Festival this year. We had the pleasure of interviewing the Producer/ Director, Peter Nicks before his screening at the Kabuki in SF.
Peter was intelligent and engaging, and we highly recommend watching that video, and then checking out the film.
A cool aspect of the project is that it’s more than a documentary, it’s a “storytelling project”…
The Waiting Room Storytelling Project is a location-based social media and community engagement initiative that aims to improve the patient experience through the collection and sharing of digital content. This cultural data – video, data visualizations, photographs and text – is collected in the waiting room by creating frameworks for sharing that range from anonymous expressions of feeling to deeper storytelling.
The primary aim of the platform is to uncover the needs of underserved patients at a moment when the role of the “Safety Net” is being debated both in America and abroad. We also aim to develop tools for patients that allow them to take a more active role in their health care experience. To this end, we aim to expand and foster the organizational capacity for storytelling at Highland Hospital by creating a robust, scalable platform that can amplify the voices and needs of the most underserved communities in our country.
As America’s health care system sits poised to undergo its greatest transformation in generations, we will capture history unfolding and make sure that the story is told from the bottom up, not just the top down, using a unique combination of social media platforms and traditional documentary film. We will directly engage the people stuck in the waiting room of a county hospital: an underserved community that is isolated and disconnected from technology and the vital conversation that can improve their lives. The Waiting Room is comprised of five main components:
- A feature-length cinema verité documentary film that uses unprecedented access to go behind the doors of an American safety-net hospital fighting for survival while weathering the storm of a persistent economic downturn. Following both patients and caregivers, the film tells the story of a diverse patient population coping with a remarkable array of health problems, while caregivers struggle to treat problems that extend well beyond their patients’ health.
- A social web architecture that encourages sharing and is designed for an interactive and social user experience. Project staff and volunteers will collect cultural data – photos, audio, videos, texts and emotions – using location based digital tools. Content will be tagged #whatruwaitingfor and uploaded to The Waiting Room’s multiple social media platforms.
- A mobile application that will allow users inside and outside of the physical waiting room to browse, share and comment inline on content tagged #whatruwaitingfor.
- A self-sustaining interactive platform placed in the waiting room at Highland Hospital that will allow for the capture of user-generated content. This initiative will serve not only as a cultural data collection platform, but will encourage the use of technology by a community that is most disenfranchised by this nation’s digital divide. The platform will have a pilot location at Highland Hospital – but will also spin off a mobile version that can be replicated and used at remote clinics, community events and hospitals around the country.
- The Waiting Room website is a politically independent, hyper-local media portal that serves as a designed aggregator of our project data and a space built for user engagement. It will serve as a hub for our content: one stop on our web of inter- connectivity between points on the social web and the mobile space.
This content will be delivered across a variety of platforms including television, radio, public spaces and the internet, giving hospitals, policy makers, journalists and the general public a greater understanding of the evolving relationship between public policy and people’s lives.