PicMo Monthly Reel July / August 2021

We’re always happy to hear good news and waves of impact even after a PicMo campaign closes!

Recently, the NC NAACP has officially declared their belief in Daniel Green’s innocence! Former Picture motion campaign, The Moment of Truth, the IMDb TV docuseries that chronicles Daniel’s case, impacted the NC NAACP’s decision to get involved. They have called for his recent appeal to be heard by the courts in North Carolina.  

Another past campaign, The Story of Plastic, has been nominated for a News & Documentary Emmy in the category of Outstanding Writing: Documentary! Join us in sharing the news and congratulating all of the Story of Plastic filmmakers and featured activists. The Emmy Documentary Categories will be streamed on Wednesday, September 29th, 2021 at 8 pm EDT. Haven’t seen The Story of Plastic and want to watch it? Check out the Story of Stuff Project website to learn more. 

Team PicMo

Honoring the Harlem Cultural Festival’s sound of freedom through our Summer of Soul community screening tour

Summer of Soul, Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson’s powerful and transporting directorial debut, is a documentary that’s part music film and part historical record created around the 1969 Harlem Cultural Festival, an epic event that celebrated Black history, culture, and fashion. The film uses the festival’s musical performances to tell the story of the cultural and sociopolitical upheaval happening at that time. Picture Motion tailored and executed a community screening tour that extended the reach of the buzzed-about concert in Harlem on Juneteenth by organizing simultaneous community screening events around the country — virtually and in person. 

Our screening hosts were equipped with everything they needed to bring the film to their community and facilitate a discussion about the importance of the Harlem Cultural Festival. 26 communities helped honor the Harlem Cultural festival’s sound of freedom by hosting a virtual or in-person screening of Summer of Soul throughout June and July. With 18 screenings taking place before the film’s July 2nd theatrical and Hulu release. Our screening tour reached an estimated 3.6K people across community arts programs like The Holland Project and Harlem Needle Arts; racial justice organizations like Greater Grand Rapids NAACP and WAVE Fund; film and media studies departments at colleges like USC of Cinematic Arts; Black filmmaker/artist collectives like Black Futures Lab and Black TV & Film Collective; and more. Our screening tour aimed to deepen the film’s narrative by engaging local organizations, artists, educators, and changemakers who could speak to the past, present, and future of Black culture and power. Above all, Picture Motion wanted to honor the Harlem Cultural Festival’s sound of freedom by creating community events that sparked joy.

Housing California hosts a virtual premiere screening of The Way Home Season 2 premiere

The Way Home is a short-form documentary series from KTF Films and Bread and Butter Films that focuses on the current homelessness epidemic in California – the state with the largest population of homeless people in the USA. We are working with Kaiser Permanente to develop virtual marquee screenings + conversations with key issue area organizations, as well as a grassroots screening tour of the series. On June 22nd, we held a virtual premiere screening of Season 2 of the series, hosted by Housing California as part of their 2021 Virtual (Un)Conference. This screening featured a post-screening panel with speakers from the filmmaking team, Housing California, and members of the healthcare sector who focus on advocacy, homelessness health, and community support. This screening kicked off our series of impact events, generated interest in the grassroots screening tour, and sparked a crucial conversation about the state of the homelessness crisis that we will continue throughout the campaign. If you’d like to host your own screening of the series, fill out this short form for more information.

A visual display around The Price of Freedom

The Price of Freedom is an unflinching look at the gun violence epidemic in America and the role the National Rifle Association, with its outsized political and cultural influence, has played over time. Engaging key communities, stakeholders, and policymakers working against and affected by gun violence, Picture Motion is developing a social impact campaign later this summer. 

We will drive critical discussions about gun control with impact initiatives such as grassroots screenings, virtual marquee events, and in-person activations. We are also launching a multi-city tour of building projection installations across major cities, integrating compelling quotes from gun control advocates, and key visuals from the film in a large-scale projection featured on buildings in local cities that are relevant to decision-makers of gun control policy. You too can be part of the conversation – learn more on the film’s website.

PicMo Team Member Snapshot edit

Meet Will Hilbert! Will is our Impact Distribution Manager based in NY who produces grassroots screening tours (both in-person and virtual) and connects local organizations and educators with film, media, and documentaries that they can use in their work.

What brought you to work in impact distribution at PicMo: My work is inspired in part by an experience I had in 2015 when I participated in a community screening and discussion at the LGBTQ Center in Greenwich Village. I had just come out, and the unfamiliar sense of belonging that I experienced was exhilarating. I began searching for ways to foster new connections and to create similar experiences for people across all issue spaces.

What are you working on right now: Promoting health-focused solutions towards the homelessness crisis with the series The Way Home and empowering communities affected by gun violence via The Price of Freedom.

Favorite recent film: Shiva Baby had me audibly gasping for 70 minutes straight.

A hobby you’re especially into right now: I am obsessed with, but also pretty terrible at, making cold brew. Very looking forward to producing something drinkable, soon!

Say hello: will@picturemotion.com

  • Apply to the MPAC Hollywood Bureau Writing Fellowship in partnership with Film Independent! The deadline is Sept 1st for the 2022 Screenwriting Lab and applications for the 2022 Episodic Lab will open in winter 2022. The 2022 fellowship will also provide a $10,000 grant to a writer who identifies as an American Muslim and will be accepted into one of the upcoming 2022 programs. Find out more on Film Independent’s website!
  • Start a conversation about the veteran experience in your community by hosting a screening of American Veteran.
  • In order to effectively participate in democracy and help make a change, you must know where your elected officials stand on the issues you care about. You can use the comprehensive ACLU Legislative Scorecard to look up the positions of your representatives.
  • Check out the new digital series from WORLD Channel, Decolonizing Mental Health — a free 20-episode short film series that spotlights the systemic inequality plaguing the mental health industry and how we can de-stigmatize talking about mental health.
  • Sign up to host a screening of A Mystery To Me, the first docu-series made about the rare disease, myasthenia gravis (MG). Can’t host a screening? Help us spread the word about this opportunity to host a screening in your networks, so communities can engage in meaningful content and conversations about MG, and ultimately spread awareness and increase empathy for this complicated disease.
  • Watch Barry Jenkins’ The Gaze, a parallel project to his new film The Underground Railroad, this non-fiction short was meant to preserve the legacy of Black ancestors whose images have been largely lost to the historical record by capturing portraits of the background actors on set who were “standing in the spaces our ancestors stood.”  Read more about The Gaze here.
  • 26 communities helped honor the Harlem Cultural festival’s sound of freedom by hosting a virtual or in-person screening of Questlove’s Summer of Soul through Picture Motion’s impact campaign — which reached an estimated 3.6K people across community arts programs, racial and social justice organizations, film schools, Black filmmaker/artist collectives and more.
  • We helped organize 21 virtual sneak peek screenings with mental health organizations and university campuses ahead of the PBS broadcast premiere of Mysteries of Mental Illness.
  • Parallel to the broadcast premiere of Mysteries of Mental Illness, Picture Motion produced two virtual national panels focused on dismantling the racism and stereotypes that underscores the mental healthcare industry, including experts like Dr. Sidney Hankerson of Columbia University and Dr. Christine Crawford, the Associate Medical Director, NAMI.
  • 407 people attended the Season 2 premiere of The Way Home on June 22nd.
  • 829 students, educators, and mental health professionals attended events during the COVID Diaries NYC impact campaign.
  • 100% of COVID Diaries NYC campaign survey respondents found that our mental health panel produced for the campaign expanded their understanding of how COVID-19 impacted the mental health of youth.

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