We’re setting out to produce a film called Broke, Busted, and Disgusted. The documentary will examine issues of rising tuition, mounting student debt, and the potential future of higher education at colleges and universities here in the United States. You can get more information and see some occasional updates at the film’s page: http://bbdthefilm.com/
Over the past 30 years, the United States has seen a consistent increase in the cost of college tuition (four times more than CPI) and a soaring level of student debt (more than $1 trillion as of March 2012). Money well spent considering that the yearly number of graduates considered “academically excellent” has seen a similar up-curve. Yet at the same time, more and more employers are saying that college graduates lack the skills needed to place them in open jobs and are forced to spend time and money training new hires. So what is happening during those four (or five…or six) years?
During college students live the dream of traveling across the globe, eating in gourmet dining centers, exercising in brand new rec facilities, and attending endless student activities. After college, graduates are shocked by a reality of tight job prospects and staggering monthly payments. Yet the problem is not that more and more graduates are in tough financial situations. The problem is that it takes so many of them by surprise, even though it is exactly the situation for which they signed up.
Broke, Busted, and Disgusted will examine the educational system in three broad questions: Is there something wrong with the system? Is there a way to work the system? and Is there a way to fix the system?
Broke, Busted, and Disgusted will ask all of these questions, and any more that may lead to a better educational system. We don’t believe we have the answers. We just believe there is a problem which, if fixed, can help lead us back to wealth, health, and happiness.
We’re excited – and have been for the past weeks – to be prepping for a new documentary project. The series is titled Your Fellow Americans. It’s going to be a (hopefully) on-going web series that will slowly, calmly take a look at what it means to be an American. It will examine issues of race, immigration, and The American Dream.
The challenges that we’re facing are moderate in number. We have ability and a good stack of production gear. We have a small team (Christopher Cook is leading, with assistance for a variety of different filmmakers, as schedules allow). Presently we don’t have funds – for this project or for much else – but we’ll be launching a Kickstarter by the start of January. Calls have been in the works for a while, slowly finding and schedule the first round of interviews. Those will be based her in Kansas City to save money. Once the project is rolling, and funding is achieved, we’ll being broadening the scope and connecting with filmmakers in other cities (if you’re one of them, let us know).
We’ve got the social profiles acquired and half-set-up, but now it’s an issue of getting some funding so we can get a get someone to focus on Social Media. As you may see by the history of posts, we’re Listeners, not so much Tellers. This is good since we’re documentary filmmakers. But it’s not good for audience-building, which is often the un-thought-about production phase called “Distribution.” So, that’s a hurdle.
Facebook page: facebook.com/yourfellowamericans
We’ve got a splash page up at http://yourfellowamericans.com - not too worried about burning time on an extensive site build. Once there are a few videos in the queue, we can paste up a simple WordPress build and worry about an extensive sight if the project “blows up.”
THE FIRST ROUND
Since the issues of race and immigration are capable of being exceedingly divisive topics, the plan is to focus the first round of interviews on families rather than individuals. We’re going for multi-generation families in as many ethnicities/races as we can find here in Kansas City. This will yield two strong positive results. Firstly, the majority of our nation can easily identify with the idea of “Family.” By having the initial interviews focus on this we can avoid the potential push-back that we individualistic Americans often have when we see an individual talking on touch issues. We often react by thinking the person is “preaching” at us, and stop listening. Secondly, by interviewing a grandparent, a parent, and a teenager we’ll have the ability to see how thoughts on these issues change across generations as well as across cultures.
It’s gonna be interesting. In every way.
Sound design for this promotional animation was handled by Brainroot. The project was designed, animated, and managed by HowdyMates!
An introduction to cigars and cigar smoking for first-time smokers and novices. Curt Diebel is a second-generation owner/operator of Diebel’s Sportsman Gallery in Kansas City, MO.
The third of 22 Timelapse Tuesdays. This one was spent with Mike Schroeder of Oddly Correct Coffee in Midtown, Kansas City. It was a fun production with a lot of beans and Mike talks about balancing the views romantic and practical views on roasting coffee.