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Self-directed refugee stories from the new American West
Our very own Film Studies Adjunct Instructor, Bryan Bello, won the inaugural pitch competition for Tribeca Film Institute’s IF/Then Pitch competition , hosted by Audience Awards during the recent 14th annual Big Sky Documentary Film Festival in Missoula, Montana.
Directed and produced by Bryan Bello, The New Neighbors Project plans to create a series of short documentaries through workshops which teach refugees media production skills so they can direct their own stories.
"We launch our workshop in which we will be teaching refugees to make and direct their own short documentaries on April 8th, 2017. Our refugee directors come from Syria, Democratic Republic of Congo, Iraq, Eritrea," says Bello.
The refugees own copyright to their films and will be sharing them around the state through a screening program that New Neighbors are establishing. All proceeds from ticket sales of their films go back to the filmmakers.
A team made up of undergraduate and graduate students at the University of Montana will then weave four of the refugee-directed shorts into a larger narrative they supplement with their own observational footage.
The film will premiere 2018 at Tribeca Film Festival in NYC.