“Clearwater,” “Out of State” nab TFI Doc grants

Projects on the Coast Salish people and Hawaiian inmates are among the five documentaries selected by the Tribeca Film Institute to receive US$15,000 in grants from the Tribeca All Access program. (Pictured: Out of State)
February 10, 2014

Projects on the Coast Salish people and Hawaiian inmates feature among the five documentaries selected by the Tribeca Film Institute (TFI) to receive US$15,000 in grants from the Tribeca All Access (TAA) program.

In addition to the grant funding, the TAA program – which has the remit of helping filmmakers from under-represented communities – offers year-round support, guidance and resources to help the projects reach completion.

“With subjects ranging from the Coast Salish peoples to Hawaiian inmates to the rural agrarian communities of Sapa, Vietnam, this year’s TAA documentary slate represents our most geographically diverse group of films since the program’s inception,” said Ryan Harrington, VP of artist programs for the TFI. “These projects come from a multicultural group of talented artists immersed in their local communities and dedicated to telling those communities’ stories.”

The five documentary films receiving grants, with film descriptions provided by TFI, are:

Directed and produced by Tracy Rector and Lou Karsen
Over a 650 mile canoe journey, Clearwater will explore the Coast Salish people’s intimate relationship to the Salish Sea. Their unique story is one of survival, adaptation and continual acceptance of an outside world. Set in the ancient waters of the Puget Sound, Clearwater is a non-fiction film about a community’s ability to transcend environmental, cultural and social changes without sacrificing a sacred way of life.

In The Shadow of the Hills
Directed and produced by Bao Nguyen, written and produced by Elizabeth Ai
Told through the perspective of two young Hmong women, In the Shadow of the Hills is a longitudinal observation of the rural agrarian communities of Sapa, Vietnam where the indigenous people have suddenly found themselves dealing with issues of rapid development, educational disparity, and human trafficking.

The Moni Yakim Legacy Project
Written, produced and directed by Rauzar Alexander, produced by Kari Wilder and Alma Har’el
A rare look into a master and pioneer of theatrical movement who recounts his own evolution and the inception of the Juilliard Acting School. Revered Juilliard alumni and present students attest to his groundbreaking methods that push actors to their utmost physical and emotional potential.

Out of State
Directed and produced by Ciara L. Lacy, produced by Beau J.K. Bassett
Out of State (pictured above) follows a group of roughly 100 native Hawaiian inmates practicing hula, a native Hawaiian dance form, as a means of maintaining their cultural heritage and working to rehabilitate themselves and their relationships with their families.

The Unafraid (working title)
Directed and produced by Heather Courtney and Anayansi Prado
In a conference room in an Atlanta office building, a quiet revolution takes place every Sunday when a group of teenagers and 20-somethings gather to do something Georgia has banned them from doing – attend a college class. The Unafraid, a vérité, multi-year documentary, will follow the story of this new underground movement, as well as the daily lives of several of these undocumented youth, now faced with the post-high school reality of being banned immigrants in a state they have called home for most of their childhood.


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