Filmmaking in general, and documentary filmmaking in particular, is a multi-layered process. While most people are familiar with the activities surrounding the release and promotion of a finished film, few are aware of the tremendous amount of effort that comes in the years leading up to that time. In our case, the process of filming is only one of three key areas of activity related to making Beneath The Veneer. strong>Two other critical functions involve raising money and building an audience. We can achieve this by screening Upwardly Mobile.
Raising Funds and Building an Audience
Earlier this month, we kicked off the first in what will be a series of events, locally and nationwide, to address both of those critical areas. Using the short film Upwardly Mobile, which we produced last fall, we’ve been hosting public and private screenings with various communities to introduce the people, places and issues to be featured in Beneath The Veneer. This has allowed us to engage others in conversations about opportunity, success and inequity as it relates to youth growing up in historically marginalized and disenfranchised communities.
While some of these events will allow us to appeal for financial and volunteer support of the film, all of them will raise awareness of the numerous ways that youth are impacted by systemic inequity. Since Upwardly Mobile shows not only the conditions that are faced by youth in historically marginalized and disenfranchised communities, but also the ways in which dedicated members of those communities are working to address those conditions, the film serves as a powerful tool for audience engagement.
So far, we’ve had overwhelmingly positive feedback from these events. Whether the audience has consisted of wealthy, white, privileged allies or people of color working to better their lives and communities, we continue to be encouraged and inspired by the ways that Upwardly Mobile challenges viewers to see the world around them in new ways. This work has allowed us to meet new friends, supporters and collaborators, and has greatly informed us as we progress with the filming of Beneath The Veneer.