Up Heartbreak Hill

King’s body of work spans news, documentary and film. After producing broadcast news in her home state of Oklahoma, King went on to associate produce the documentaries Election Day (PBS), Bad Blood and human rights projects for the ACLU.

Erica Scharf has spent much of her career in documentary film and television. She is currently editing the documentary television show, The Shift, airing on Investigation Discovery.

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I was honored to sit on the panel, “Building Community Awareness through Long Form Documentaries” at the AFI SilverDocs Festival this year. Moderated by Doug McKenney, Executive Producer of CPB’s Public Awareness Initiative, the panel also included Sandy St. Louis, Project Manager for Frontline’s Dropout Nation, Jacquie Jones, Executive Director of the National Black Programming Consortium and Executive Producer of DC Met: Life Inside School Reform and Tanishia Williams-Minor, the high school principal featured in DC Met.

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The fourth biennial VisionMaker Film Festival was held September 30 through October 6, 2011, with screenings at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln's Mary Riepma Ross Media Arts Center, Sheldon Art Museum, NET Television, Film Streams (Omaha, Neb.) and Merryman Performing Arts Center (Kearney, Neb.) with the help of the following funders and supporters: Nebraska Arts Council, Nebraska Humanities Council, NET Television, Lincoln Journal Star, Southeast Nebraska Native American Coalition (SENNAC), University of Nebraska-Omaha (UNO), Creighton University,

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I recently attended imagineNative where my film, Up Heartbreak Hill, had its Canadian premiere. The festival was amazing – it ran from Oct. 19 – 23 in Toronto and was a whirlwind of films, panels and networking opportunities. The festival kicked off with a screening of On the Ice and The Country of Wolves, which were both phenomenal. At the opening night party, I had the chance to chat with a number of Khoi-San filmmakers and artists, who were there as a part of the delegation representing South Africa’s indigenous community.

In the new film Up Heartbreak Hill, Thomas Martinez, resident of Crystal New Mexico, a community on the Navajo Reservation, tells viewers about the realities of life on the Reservation. “Around here everyone thinks they live in a third world country,” explains Thomas, “what I hear from people is that living in Navajo is just straight up bad.” Thomas attends high school in Navajo, a nearby town of about 2000 people with a per capita income of $4,600 and a high school graduation rate of 56%.

 
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Five Vision Maker Media Films Streaming Free in November on PBS

Watch these films during November, just click on the link to watch.

Filmmakers


• Veterans' Day Special - Free viewings: Nov. 9-12 on VMM's YouTube Channel
• Native Documentaries on Special for November
• Filmmaker Challenges: Importance of Protecting Creativity
• Celebrating 50 Years of Public Broadcasting
• Filmmaker Opportunities
• Upcoming Film Screenings
•To Edit or Not to Edit Your Own FIlms: Wat's Your Choice?
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