This past week, four Kartemquin interns – John Fecile (myself), Chris Bentley, Ryan Gleeson, and Haley Martin – joined a loose federation of independent documentary filmmakers to cover the events surrounding the NATO summit.
J. R. Jones of the Chicago Reader wrote a compelling comparison of our 2008 film At the Death House Door, directed by Peter Gilbert and Steve James, and Into the Abyss, a new film by Werner Herzog. In "Death and Texas", Jones goes into depth about the similarities and differences in both films examine and condemn the practice of capital punishment, and even share some interview subjects.
Maria Finitzo, the Peabody Award-winning Producer and Director of Mapping Stem Cell Research: Terra Incognita, recently went on a pre-production trip to Bolivia with collaborators Mike Kennedy and Dr. Bill Leonard for her new Kartemquin project Encounters with the Other. The trip was full of such adventures as only documentary filmmakers could imagine, and we thought we'd give you the inside scoop!
The impact of At the Death House Door is highlighted by two very different events this week. A compelling profile of Rev. Carroll Pickett, former Prison Chaplain of the death house at "Walls" Prisoner in Huntsville, Texas, who presided over 95 executions, Peter Gilbert and Steve James' Kartemquin film for IFC has changed many people's thinking over the merits of the death penalty since it's 2008 release.