Authenticity and Realism: Talking with Grassroots Films

JOSEPH CAMPO: Although none of our past productions were not specifically produced for educational institutions per-se, you will find that they educate and inform our audiences. All of Grassroots Films' productions have some element of educative value built into their stories, whether it be academic, moral or inspirational.

CHARLES KINNANE, DIRECTOR: Wyoming Catholic College is something special that no one has ever quite seen before, so we wanted to give the school a promotional film that was something completely new.

There a unique flavor to WCC. What about the college did you feel was the most important thing to convey to the viewer? And what creative decisions were made in your effort to tell that story in a "visual" way?

JOSEPH CAMPO: I was immediately impressed by the students: They were energetic, and enthusiastic to speak about their personal experiences at the college. They possess a keen sense of who they are and where they are going. A portion of the curriculum is done in the great outdoors, and our director, Chuck, captured the cinematic aerial views. Much of the piece was shot from a helicopter, covering majestic vistas, and the magnificent beauty of Wyoming.

JEFFREY AZIZE: Filming at WCC was an incredible experience, as well as a spiritual awakening. Having the opportunity to meet many young people on fire about their faith, education and life itself was encouraging to see firsthand. The authenticity and realism of the students and faculty make me want to send my future children to Wyoming Catholic College.

What does the future hold for Grassroots Films? Has your experience with The Human Experience encouraged you to work on another feature or two?

JOSEPH CAMPO: We have been fortunate to respond to a continued and expanded interest in The Human Experience. We are currently booking new tours in Poland, Germany, Honduras and Russia and the film has been translated into six world languages and counting. Jeffrey Azize, myself, and the other filmmakers have been on tour in 20 different countries, but the film has been screened worldwide. We also recently signed a deal with "The Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN)," which will be airing The Human Experience in the coming year.

The audience inspires us. Our past productions have been well received by people of all walks of life - people of different nationalities, colors, and creeds. They have motivated us to continue on the path, opening the door for us to focus on a diverse number of projects. We are presently negotiating three major film projects, one of which is a new feature docu-drama that we will begin principal photography on in the New Year.

Thanks for your time, guys! And thanks for all you're doing to spread the Word!

12/20/2011 5:00:00 AM
  • Catholic
  • Through a Lens Darkly
  • Grassroots Films
  • Human Experience
  • Oprah Winfrey
  • Christianity
  • Roman Catholicism
  • Joseph Susanka
    About Joseph Susanka
    Joseph Susanka has been doing development work for institutions of Catholic higher education since his graduation from Thomas Aquinas College in 1999. He blogs at Crisis Magazine, where he also contributes feature articles on a variety of topics.
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