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Introduce Yourself: Sign In Here First

Welcome to The D-Word! Stop in and sign the guest book - let us know a little (or a lot) about yourself.

Please note that this is one of our Public Topics, so best to enter email addresses with (at) to prevent them being harvested. Spam will be deleted.

jade wu
Thu 3 Sep 2009Link

New to D-Word. I'm a writer/filmmaker who founded a 501(c)(3) non-profit, Golden Phoenix Productions, Inc. in 2002. http://goldenphoenixproductions.com

At the time, I started the non-profit for a doc film on what I thought would be a story about my, then 94-yr old, illiterate Chinese-Burmese grandmother who documented over 75 years of her life in illustrated journals by creating her own hieroglyphic language. Her story garnered enough interest to capture a little funding when funding was more available. I was a neophyte in filmmaking, so I lived an "everything documentary" world. I watched films, watched other filmmakers, I learned everything and anything that would help me tell the best story I could tell.

I traveled to Burma, post-9/11, following my grandmother back to her homeland. She had been visiting her offspring in the U.S. and it was time to return, for she feared reliving the horrors of war, something that shrouded her entire life. At least Burma was home to her. Burma was safer, provided one plays by the government's rules, speaks only behind closed doors, and never displays a disgruntlement toward the junta.

It had been 45 yrs since I had visited Burma. People warned me to stay within the tourist boundaries. My parents pleaded with me not to go. My friends kept saying, "please be careful."

I obtained a special permission note from the Myanmar Ambassador in DC. to visit my relatives in the Northern Shan States. It felt like grade school, but I had to abide by the country's laws. Who am I to disrespect another government? Who am I to feel entitled to leniency just because I am an American citizen? I did everything above board.

Despite the diligent measures taken and my special permission note, the day of my arrival in Lashio, I was arrested by the junta and detained for three weeks. They had no clue about any Ambassador nor had they any idea where Washington,DC was. Needless to say, my film suddenly swerved another direction, and for a while, I was run off the road.

I didn't know if I would ever get back to the film, but I had grown addicted to doc filmmaking by then and needed a fix, that truth fix where everything around you has a story behind it that needs to be told. I had to find the right story, one that would stir me, cause insomnia, ressurect that doc filmmaking drive again. I needed to find a story that would parallel mine in graveness, but wasn't about me.

I found that story and I've been living in it for two years now. Production is nearly wrapped on NUMBER 228, the story of Mildred Harnack, the only American civilian beheaded by Hitler's direct order for her sole American involvement in Berlin's German Resistance movement, The Red Orchestra, during WWII.

Several years ago, I secured exclusive lifestory rights to tell her tale in film, television and stage. It's been a grand ride meeting subjects who have resurrected pain and buried truth. I've had a chance to relive their past with them, and through it all, I realized that this film is the precise prescription for me to return to my film about my grandmother. Life's cycle spins in odd ways. I love what I do and I hope what I do does doc filmmaking justice.

Often I work in a vacuum, so it'll be nice to be a part of D-Word. I've been such an ostrich.

Thanks, Doug, for starting this.

Jade


Robert Goodman
Thu 3 Sep 2009Link

that's one heck of an intro on the D-word's 10th. Welcome aboard. Our hosts must be busy celebrating. smile.


Christopher Wong
Thu 3 Sep 2009Link

welcome jade. you'll find a great community of docmakers here to share with, learn from, and maybe just maybe get arrested with ;)


Marj Safinia
Thu 3 Sep 2009Link

Yep, if you're looking for cellmates, I can point you in the direction of 2 gentlemen in particular who come to mind!

Welcome to the D-Word. I can tell you're going to be a great addition.


Carlos Alberto Mattos
Thu 3 Sep 2009Link

Hi everyone, anyone. I am a Brazilian journalist, film critic and film researcher who is specially interested in docs. I even created, some 3 years ago, the first Brazilian blog for docs, DocBlog, under the umbrella of big newspaper O Globo (Rio de Janeiro). Now it is temporarily out, but will return in 2010.

For the moment I post (only in Portuguese and not only about docs) at http://carmattos.wordpress.com.

Well, I am here just for the fun or reading and hearing from you. And eventually get some hot subjects for my blog.

Warm regards from Brazil!


Peter Paris
Thu 3 Sep 2009Link

Hello filmmakers! I am an editor in Brooklyn. I am hoping to get myself further established as an editor working on anything interesting and that leads me to documentaries.

Documentaries to me are about learning and I'd be interested in working with anyone if they need an editor for short-form documentaries and long-form films. I have a bit of experience in film production and on the advertising level of post-production as well.

I have recently completed a couple of documentary trailers. In the coming months, I'm hoping to expand that into longer form projects and features. Please visit my reel, which at the moment consists of mostly advertising Rips. The address is http://web.mac.com/peter.paris and also to view the documentary trailers at http://www.decadesout.org/

I am also looking for short-form narratives as well if anyone needs an editor for those types of projects. I have experience on both Avid and Final Cut Pro and most HD tape formats.

Thanks too all!

Pete


Doug Block
Thu 3 Sep 2009Link

Welcome, Carlos and Peter. Feel free to register for full professional membership for full access to all discussion topics.

Jade, it's wonderful to have you leap right in with that great intro. By all means, make The D-Word your second home!


Peter Paris
Thu 3 Sep 2009Link

Thank you Doug, I hope we can work together in the future.

Pete


wilfred kiumi
Fri 4 Sep 2009Link

Hi am based in Nairobi Kenya we own a small production and rental house. i heard about this forum from some guys i worked with from canada and i think its great.


Ben Kempas
Fri 4 Sep 2009Link

A big welcome to the first new Enthusiasts and Members of the now 10-year-old D-Word. Wilfred, you should also apply for full membership if you haven't already.

Edited Fri 4 Sep 2009 by Ben Kempas

Ruth Somalo
Fri 4 Sep 2009Link

Hello all, I can't believe is taken me this long to join the D-word.
I was having drinks at the beer garden with some of you guys last night, excellent mix of docu networking and party atmosphere. Happy B-day.

I've known about it since its birth, but I was still in Spain getting my first steps in the documentary making world. I think it was in a Patricio Guzman's master class when I heard about it first, for some reason in my head it was archived like something of a "only big documentary makers should join" type of thing. Thanks for being so open and welcoming.

After 5 years in London I moved to NY and I am loving the documentary community/family of people I keep meeting.

My last feature length doc Till You're Told To Stop, about british singer songwriter James Blunt and his story from obscurity to selling 14 million records worldwide and remaining himself through the process, is doing well in Festivals and I am talking to a few sales agents and distributors now. This doc journey has been lonely and hard for the last 5 years, and is finally starting to happen. Find out more at www.tillyouretoldtostop.com

My backdrop idea for this film was Don't look back by DA Pennebaker. I met the legend, the lovely man himself at an STF event this year (later chatted about Rioja wine and spanish cheese). That made me realize that NY is a place where incredible people are happy to share stories and help each other, and I think D-word is a great example of this.

Thanks for having me.


Doug Block
Fri 4 Sep 2009Link

Welcome aboard, Ruth. Great to meet you last night and nice to see you leap right into joining and introducing yourself. Make yourself at home here.


Carlos Alberto Mattos
Sat 5 Sep 2009Link

In reply to Doug Block's post on Thu 3 Sep 2009 : Thank you Doug. I am starting by browsing this great forum.


Ben Kempas
Sat 5 Sep 2009Link

Maybe we should change our tag line from "a worldwide community of documentary professionals" to "only big documentary makers should join"...


jade wu
Sat 5 Sep 2009Link

In reply to Marj Safinia's post on Thu 3 Sep 2009 :

Thanks for the welcome note, Marj. Still figuring out how to navigate through D-Word. I'll be in LA next week for pickups and meetings. Is there anyone I should meet with while there?


Doug Block
Sun 6 Sep 2009Link

It's easy to navigate, Jade. Just come on every day and keep clicking on the "Read next topic with new postings" link at the bottom.


Raphaela Neihausen
Sun 6 Sep 2009Link

In reply to Ruth Somalo's post on Fri 4 Sep 2009 :

Welcome, Ruth!! You finally made it over. I am delighted that I get double exposure to you now (both through STF and D-Word). If only I was better about regularly attending those dance classes, I'd get triple the exposure... One day.

I think you'll find the D-Word community very useful for both your existing and future projects, as well as your general enthusiasm for documentaries. Bienvenida!


Raphaela Neihausen
Sun 6 Sep 2009Link

In reply to Jesse Epstein's post on Mon 31 Aug 2009 22:54 UTC :

Jesse! Just catching up on past D-Word posts, and see that you have finally joined as well. Funny, but I always assumed that both you and Ruth were already members since you're so involved in the NY doc community. Anyways, great to see you both here!! It is indeed a fantastic resource, rich with information and community. Thom and I are back in NY Sept. 21, so see you at STF!


Tim Disbrow
Sun 6 Sep 2009Link

Hey, my name is Tim Disbrow, I'm a filmmaker from New Jersey. My production company is Iron River Films LLC. I'm currently working on my first feature length doc. It's called "Card Subject To Change." It's about pro wrestling, more specifically the "Independent Circuit" of pro wrestling which could be compared to the Minor Leagues in pro baseball. The film will be complete in early October.

Thanks!

IronRiverFilms.com

CardSubjectToChange.com


Heddy Honigmann
Mon 7 Sep 2009Link

Hallo colleagues from all over! Nice to be here (thank you Ben that you invited me). I'm a Peruvian-Dutch filmmaker, Heddy Honigmann. I live in Amsterdam, where you're welcome (and not only during the IDFA). I have a son I adore, Stefan (he just started to study film) and a friend, Henk, I really love. When I do not film I'm not so happy. This is one of these days :-(
So go quickly and take a look in my website:

www.heddy-honigmann.nl

My photo will follow one of these days.
Why I read under the space for my photo "enthusiast" ?


amit mitra
Mon 7 Sep 2009Link

Hello All,
I am a wildlife photographer and just completed my 1st Documentary on Snow Leopards. Well, it took almost 18months for me to complete this film.
http://www.conservancyfilms.in/films.htm
I do have a day job in IT too.
Hope to learn a lot from here.

Thanks a lot :O)


John Burgan
Mon 7 Sep 2009Link

Welcome Heddy and Amrit. Everyone's an Enthusiast when they join us (at least we hope they are) but those with professional experience are welcome to apply to become a Full Member

Read more about The D-Word here


Erica Ginsberg
Mon 7 Sep 2009Link

Welcome Carlos, Ruth, Wilfred, Peter, Jade, Gregory, Tim, Amit, Ted, and anyone else who has entered through the saloon doors of D-Word in the recent past. And a big welcome to Heddy who is my docu-hero. We're not happy either when you are not doing film.


Doug Block
Mon 7 Sep 2009Link

Welcome, Heddy and Amit. Heddy, can't tell you how many admirers you have here, we've discussed your films often in our Documentary Films topic. So become a member soon so you can join in and have access to all of our topics. Amit, feel free, as well.


Robert Goodman
Mon 7 Sep 2009Link

I've seen too few of your films Heddy but O Amor Natural is truly a delight.


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