Jonathan Novick, a graduate student in New York City and achondroplastic dwarf, uses a hidden camera to film the stares and comments he receives on his daily commute.
Despite blindness, multiple sclerosis, and lung cancer, photographer Flo Fox continues to shoot the streets of New York City. No longer able to hold a camera, she instructs her aides to take photos for her. Be sure to visit her website at http://www.flofox.com/.
This star studded documentary takes us on a thought provoking and humorous journey to explore the evolution of disability portrayals in film and television.
From the early days of silent films to present day, from Chaplin to X-Men, disability portrayals are ever changing. This dynamic documentary takes a detailed look at the evolution of “disability” in entertainment.
Cinemability: The Synopsis
From the early days of silent films to present day, from Chaplin to X-Men, disability portrayals are ever changing. This dynamic documentary takes a detailed look at the evolution of “disability” in entertainment. Our in-depth investigation goes behind the scenes to interview Filmmakers, Studio Executives, Film Historians, and Celebrities, as well as utilize vivid clips from Hollywood’s most beloved motion pictures and television programs to focus attention on the powerful impact that entertainment and the media can have on society.
Do disability portrayals in the media impact society or does the media simply reflect our ever-changing attitudes? In this important documentary we see if media has had a hand in transforming the societal inclusion of the disabled and determine if an enlightened understanding of disability can have a positive impact on the world.
GOLD PICTURES Presents A JENNI GOLD Film “CINEMABILITY”
Cinematography by D. SCOTT DOBBIE Editor CHRIS LORUSSO Original Score by ERIK LUNDMARK
Co-Producers JANE SEYMOUR SEAN MICHAEL ARTHUR TRACIE FISS Executive Producers DAVID F. ALFONSO
JEFF MAYNARD D. SCOTT DOBBIE JAMES WALCHLE Produced by JENNI GOLD and JEFF MAYNARD
Written by JENNI GOLD and SAMUEL W. REED Directed by JENNI GOLD
From Top Documentary Films Online: http://topdocumentaryfilms.com/spirit-child/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+TopDocumentaryFilms+%28Top+Documentary+Films+-+Watch+Free+Documentaries+Online%29
For centuries, some West African communities have branded children born deformed or with disabilities as evil spirits. They are seen as a drain on limited resources, and so “medicine men” are often asked to perform rituals and prepare poisonous concoctions to kill them. Thousands of defenseless children have been murdered in this way.
Food is scarce there. Even children must work for their family to eat. Living on the edge of survival, the birth of a disabled child is greatly feared. It’s seen as a terrible burden on the family, an extra mouth to feed. The child won’t be able to help in the field, and neither will its mother, who will have to devote precious time to its care.
Out of this fear and ancient tradition has grown. They believe that such a child is a spirit child, an evil presence that must be destroyed before it threatens the survival of the family. It doesn’t even need to be disabled. Any child in a family where things are going wrong can be branded as evil. And when this happens, elders in the community, known as concoction men, are called in to poison the child.
Local authorities have often used dialogue to talk to community members to stop this practice. Advocacy has been successful to some extent, but has not been able to eradicate this from the community. There isn’t any record of anyone ever being arrested for what can only be described as a dreadful crime.
Reporter’s plan is to find some concoction men, to invent a so-called problem child and see if they will diagnose it as an evil spirit. Then he aims to catch them in the act of trying to poison it. A similar looking dummy of a child was made from silicone by a movie props company in London.
From: Todd Soundelux
Todd Soundelux Supports “Cinemability”
Posted on May 20, 2013
TODD SOUNDELUX today announced that the company and creative talent from its Todd-AO, Soundelux and Modern Music divisions will donate creative post production sound and music services to support the documentary project CINEMABILITY.
Directed by Jenni Gold and produced by Jeff Maynard, CINEMABILITY takes a humorous and thought-provoking look at the evolution of the portrayal of “disability” in film and television. Featuring historical clips and commentary from notable filmmakers, industry executives, film historians and celebrities, CINEMABILITY seeks to better understand the powerful impact of the media on society – and specifically as it relates to the role of media in supporting an enlightened understanding of disability, and a movement towards societal inclusiveness.
Soundelux will contribute the services of Supervising Sound Editor Andrew DeCristofaro; Modern Music will provide the services of Music Editor Sally Boldt; and Todd-AO will contribute the services of Academy Award-winning Re-recording Mixer Michael Minkler and Emmy Award-winning Re-recording Mixer Onnalee Blank.
“CINEMABILITY is a powerful reminder of the finest tradition of documentary filmmaking – the notion of enlightening the audience in a compelling and entertaining manner, while also challenging society to hold itself to a higher standard of social justice, equality and inclusion,” said David F. Alfonso, the owner of TODD SOUNDELUX and Executive Producer of the project. “Jenni and Jeff are talented filmmakers, who have embarked on an important journey to further our collective understanding of how the mass media helps shape our perceptions of, and attitudes towards, notions of disability.
Gale Anne Hurd added: “I admire Jenni’s talent and singular vision in making this important film. CINEMABILITY shines a bright light on the power of filmmakers to interpret social contexts and shape the perceptions of a global audience. Her film contributes to an important dialogue regarding the portrayals of people with disabilities in film and television, and how these portrayals influence us all. The level of awareness expressed by the influential creative voices featured in the film is truly gratifying.”
CINEMABILITY includes interviews with an extensive list of notable personalities, including Ben Affleck; Jamie Foxx; Marlee Matlin; Helen Hunt; William H. Macy; Geena Davis; Gary Sinise; Jane Seymour; Taylor Hackford; Beau Bridges; Garry Marshall; Robert David Hall; Michael Apted; Gale Anne Hurd; Ken Howard; Geri Jewell; Danny Woodburn; Peter Bogdanovich; Peter Farrelly; and Tom Sherak.
Director Jenni GoldDirector Jenni Gold
“I am very grateful for the strong support of our project by the teams at Todd-AO, Soundelux and Modern Music,” said Jenni Gold, the film’s director. “Andrew DeCristofaro, Mike Minkler, Onnalee Blank and Sally Boldt are truly my ‘dream team’ and CINEMABILITY could not be in better hands. It has been incredibly satisfying to experience the validation of the warm embrace offered to us, our film and our mission by this group of passionate, talented and socially engaged community of artists.”
CINEMABILITY is scheduled to premiere on July 26, 2013 – coinciding with the anniversary of the signing of the Americans with Disabilities Act by President George H. W. Bush on July 26, 1990.
To learn more about this project, please visit www.cinemability.com or follow CINEMABILITY on Facebook.
Patrick O’Brien is an underground filmmaker suffering from Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (AKA Lou Gehrig’s Disease), who’s making a 35mm feature documentary about his experiences. Now having lost almost all control of his body, Patrick is using an eye tracking computer to complete his film, with the help of his friends. He’s launched a RocketHub crowdfunding project to raise the money to finish the film. “Everything Will Be OK: An Epic Documentary about ALS”
from CNN.com: Hemingway family mental illness explored in new film
By Elizabeth Landau, CNN
updated 8:57 AM EST, Wed January 23, 2013
(CNN) — Every family, even famous ones, have secrets. The Hemingways are no different.
“We were, sort of, the other American family that had this horrible curse,” says Mariel Hemingway. She compared her family to the Kennedys — but the Hemingway curse, she said, is mental illness.
Hemingway, granddaughter of acclaimed author Ernest Hemingway, explores the troubled history of her family in “Running from Crazy,” a documentary that premiered at the Sundance Film Festival on Sunday. Barbara Kopple is the director; Oprah Winfrey is the executive producer.
“Knowing that there’s so much suicide and so much mental illness in my family, I’ve always kind of been ‘running from crazy,’ worried that one day I’d wake up and be in the same position,” Mariel Hemingway, 51, said at a support group for families of suicide, as shown in the film.
Hemingway told CNN last week she wanted this documentary to be an unveiling of her family history, and to give people permission to express their own “stuff,” to realize they’re “not alone in the world of dysfunction.”
The documentary guides the viewer through the turmoil of her parents’ marriage and the troubled relationships between her and her siblings. It includes archival footage from when her sister Margaux Hemingway, who took her own life in 1996, had been making a personal family documentary.
“Suicide has no rhyme or reason,” Hemingway said. “Some people think about it for years and plan it. Some people, it’s 20 dark minutes of their life that they decide to take their life that comes out of the blue. It’s very random, it’s very frightening.”
Hemingway doc looks at mental illness
Whether Hemingway is jumping on a trampoline or submerging herself in a cold stream, with her pointed nose and bouncy blonde hair, her message in the film is one of achieving mental well-being and overcoming one’s own problems. These scenes contrast with newspaper clippings, still photos and melancholy video clips from her family’s past.
Seven members of Hemingway’s family have died by taking their own lives, including Ernest and Mariel Hemingway’s older sister Margaux, she said. Mariel Hemingway had denied her sister’s death was a suicide until an event hosted by the American Association for the Prevention of Suicide in 2003.
Ernest Hemingway, who won the 1954 Nobel Prize in Literature, struggled with depression and killed himself in 1961, just months before Mariel Hemingway was born. But suicide wasn’t something that was talked about when she was growing up.
“Nobody spoke about anything,” she said. “It was a different generation.” Even her sister’s suicide was not talked about, she said.
The film’s biggest revelation, which was the most difficult part of her family history for Hemingway to reveal, is that she believes her father, Jack Hemingway, sexually abused her sisters Margaux and Joan, nicknamed “Muffet.” Hemingway drops this information bomb only briefly in the film — the first time she has revealed this publicly. Jack Hemingway died in 2000.
Hemingway told CNN she does not remember her father abusing her, but notes that she did sleep in the same room as her mother, who had cancer, possibly as protection from her father. She is not sure if her mother knew what was going on. It’s possible that her father didn’t even remember doing it, she says, because he was drunk. Alcohol abuse also runs in the family, she said.
Mariel Hemingway began her screen acting career as the younger sister of a character played by Margaux in the 1976 film “Lipstick.” Critics praised Mariel and dissed Margaux, which strained their relationship.
But Mariel Hemingway said she had been in touch with her sister the week before she died. “She was seemingly OK,” she said. “But you never really know with suicide what’s going on in a person’s mind.”
Prior to the film, Hemingway only saw her sister Joan Hemingway about once a year. Muffet Hemingway lives in Sun Valley, Idaho; Mariel Hemingway lives in Los Angeles.
Muffet had experimented with LSD when she was young, and received a diagnosis of manic depression. Mariel Hemingway has discussed her sister’s struggles in numerous interviews over the years.
“She represented being, you know, ‘crazy,’ ” Mariel Hemingway said last week. “I always feared that I would wake up that way, or that maybe I was that way and I didn’t even know it.”
But since doing the film, they have seen each other a bit more often, including at Christmas. Making the movie has made Mariel Hemingway get over her fear of seeing her sister, whom she describes as “such a loving, kind person.”
“My dream is to be able to have enough money to take care of her myself, and really take over her care,” she said.
Attempts by CNN to contact Joan Hemingway were unsuccessful. An April article in the Twin Falls, Idaho, Times-News said her artwork was being featured in a business in Ketchum, the town adjacent to Sun Valley. Business owner Nicola Potts told the newspaper that Joan Hemingway, 61, leads a “very happy, very private life.”
Mariel, too, said she has had depression and suicidal thoughts, and recalls suffering insecurity and being fearful and depressed growing up. When she overcame that, “I was like, ‘I’ve spent all my life being that way,’ ” she said.
To move past these feelings, Hemingway says she has “done everything” — psychotherapy, gurus, holistic doctors — and each of the methods she has tried have given her something of value. On her blog, for instance, she recommends that everyone take a few minutes of silence in the morning and before sleeping to be still and silent, which helps her to be more calm and focused.
Practices such as these, in addition to exercise, spending time in nature, and eating right, have all helped her achieve peace, she said. It’s only within the last four years that she feels she has completely overcome depression.
“It’s amazing to me that I’m not sad anymore, and that I don’t worry and that I don’t fear,” she said.
These days, Hemingway and her boyfriend Bobby Williams have a lifestyle company called TheWillingWay (“He has the ‘will,’ I have the ‘way,’ ” Hemingway said). Health and wellness are her passion.
She also advocates for suicide and mental illness awareness. She is open and communicative with her two daughters about their own mental health, too.
“I think people need to talk about it a lot,” she said of mental illness, “Making it OK that it’s in your family.” She added, “It doesn’t shame anyone, and it doesn’t make anybody’s family an ugly, bad family.”
That is a challenge to which this Sundance film also rises.
For immediate assistance, contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) if you or someone you know is contemplating suicide.
David Matthews can’t get a date. He is a writer and artist with a great sense of humor and impeccable dry delivery. He has scored solo art shows around Pittsburgh, readings at coffee shops and acting gigs in a few short films. He’s got a nice job, house and car, and could even treat a lady to dinner. So what’s the problem?
At 41 years of age, David was diagnosed with Asperger’s syndrome. This late-in-life diagnosis and lack of treatment in childhood has left David with a lot of catching up to do. Although David is highly intelligent, he has a major blind spot: empathy and understanding of the human, especially female, psyche.
Aspie Seeks Love follows David’s journey to understand his Asperger’s, improve as a person, writer, and artist, and find a meaningful relationship. We’ll watch David explore the world of online dating and we’ll also see his attempts to break out of his shell and connect with women in person. David’s quest for self-improvement will culminate in the Pittsburgh release party for his debut book Meltdown in the Cereal Aisle.
Contact Julie Sokolow to inquire about the film.
At age 23, Simi Linton was injured while hitchhiking to Washington to protest the war in Vietnam. Suddenly a young disabled college student, she confronted discrimination she couldn’t have imagined before. Simi emerges as a resourceful activist, and in time realizes that love, sexuality, and dance can once again be central to her life.
My name is Harvey Hubbell V, and I am a documentary filmmaker from Litchfield, Connecticut. My production company, Captured Time Productions, has been in existence for over 20 years and has won over
50 film and video festival awards for our comic documentaries. My latest project is a documentary titled Dislecksia: The Movie, and we have recently been accepted into VisionFest where we will have our New
York Premiere! We feel that your presence at the screening of
Dislecksia: The Movie will create a win-win-win situation: for your school districts, our film, and the festival. We would appreciate it if you could share information about this screening with your schools and communities.
Dislecksia: The Movie focuses on the serious and misunderstood subject of dyslexia, a learning disability that we look at as just a learning difference. Viewers will come to know dyslexics – and those who teach and study them – not just as statistics or talking heads, but as people. We hope for this film to spread awareness and the facts about dyslexia, inspiring change in education, public opinion, and policy.
My crew and I have also been working on Dislecksia: The Book, Companion to the Documentary Film. This is a compilation of the hours of interviews and stories that couldn’t fit into our 90-minute documentary. The book will be available for purchase during the course of the festival.
Our New York Premiere will be held on Saturday, June 23rd at Tribeca Cinemas at 54 Varick Street, NY, NY at 6:30pm. After the screening, I will moderate a panel discussion on topics such as advocacy, legislation, education reform, and the student experience of dyslexia.
Tickets for this event are $12. We would love for you to attend this screening to see what our film is about and to develop a working relationship with you in the near future.
By joining forces with us, you join a powerful movement with great momentum that has captivated teachers, advocates, dyslexics, and brain scientists alike. If you are interested in attending a screening or would like more information, please feel free to contact us by email at email@example.com or call our office at 860-567-0675. We look forward to hearing from you.
Harvey Hubbell V
Dislecksia: The Movie
“Heart Child” is a documentary film about twenty-nine year old Crys Worley, who is the mother of a nine year old autistic child, Sasha. It is a remarkable story about a mother’s struggles, not only with her own health, but the well being of her son. Committing to Sasha that she will never give up on him and inspired by the challenges parents of autistic children face, she started a non-profit organization, called A.Skate – Autism. Skating with Kids through Acceptance, Therapy, and Education. This film documents her extraordinary journey.?
from the Tribeca film festival site:
Planet of Snail
Feature Documentary | 89 min | World Documentary Competition
Deaf and blind, Young-Chan lives in the quiet, isolated world of his small apartment, nursing dreams of someday becoming a successful writer. But when Soon-Ho, an empathetic woman herself compromised by a spinal disability, comes into his life, a unique love story begins. A small and delicate tale, Planet of Snail depicts this inseparable pair in their daily life, infusing beauty and gravity into the minutest moments of their experience: the challenge of changing a light bulb, the thrill of a ride on a sled, the momentousness of a day out in the world alone.
Winner of the top jury prize at the world’s preeminent nonfiction film festival, the International Documentary Festival of Amsterdam, Planet of Snail is a poetic and gently paced study that brings to life the sensual world shared by this special couple. Deftly directed with tenderness and subtlety under the sensitive hand of documentarian Seung-Jun Yi, Planet of Snail is a visually striking, intimate, and experiential journey that proves the greatest beauty can be found in the smallest and most unlikely love stories.