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Montana Film Office

Oct
1
2011
October 2011 – Press & News

hutteriteoct11Geographic Channel films central Montana Hutterite colony for new series

A National Geographic crew is filming a documentary about a Hutterite colony in central Montana, hoping to give viewers an inside look at one of the country’s most misunderstood people. Several weeks ago, the National Geographic Channel began following a Dariusleut colony outside of Lewistown. The network is planning to use the footage in a 10-part series tentatively titled “One Big Family: The Hutterites,” to air sometime in 2012.

Because of a confidentiality agreement, the network declined to name the colony that will be featured but said it is one of the smaller colonies in the state, with just 59 members.

Jeff Collins, the director of the National Geographic Channel production, said the film will show Hutterite people telling their own story without an outside narrator. The series will be told through the colony members’ words and day-to-day interactions. Collins said the story focuses on one particular colony and will not be a commentary on the entire Hutterite population.

“(The colony) is taking somewhat of a risk by doing it this way, and there may be some Hutterites who don’t agree with the way they tell their story,” Collins said. “(But) I think the show is going to be amazing — no one has ever had this kind of access before.”

Collins said viewers might be surprised with how the colony deals with modern problems.

“The documentary is not a valentine, they have problems, trials and tribulations and issues just like any other family does,” Collins said. “The way they solve them is what’s interesting to us because they believe in resolving them when problems come up whereas a lot of families can be passive aggressive and let things fester until it turns into a bad wound that can’t heal anymore.”

Woven into those conflicts is the struggle to determine how many modern conveniences to accept into their lives.

Click here for a PDF of the full article by Jake Sorich of the Great Falls Tribune. Photo credit – National Geographic Channel / Ben Shank.


axmenoct11HISTORY’S “Ax Men” Shoots in Northwestern Montana

Emmy Award-winning Original Productions, known for its non-fiction programming featuring everyday heroes in extraordinary situations, is currently shooting its fifth season of HISTORY’s “Ax Men” in northwestern Montana. The reality documentary series follows logging crews as they brave the extreme dangers of the industry.

Northwestern Montana has a long history of logging. Its thick forests have been the source of income to loggers for generations; yet, their beauty remains. Pine, fir and larch trees carpet remote mountainsides and border alpine lakes, providing scenic backdrops to filmmakers who wish to capture the danger or the serenity of the Montana wilderness.

Locations and incentive package, visit www.montanafilm.com.

Click here for a PDF of the P3 Update article. Photo credit Michelle Niland.


localsLocals part of national TV show

The TV show “America’s Most Wanted” will feature the search for David Burgert, an ex-militia leader from Flathead County, during the show’s season premier which airs Saturday on Fox. Whitefish folks may recognize a few faces during the show. Morgan Phelps, Brian Cain and R.J. Buzzard all had roles in a reenactment for the show. Local residents Noma Buzzard and Liz Cain also assisted with production for the show.

The “America’s Most Wanted” crew recently spent time in Missoula and the Flathead Valley filming. Reenactments were shot in Lolo and the Trumble Creek area. Many Montana residents, including Flathead and Missoula law enforcement officers, participated in the shoot.

The show, in an episode listed as “50 Fugitives in 50 States,” is featuring the story of David Burgert, who in June shot at Missoula County sheriff’s deputies and fled into the woods. Burgert is known for his affiliation with the group Project 7.

Click here for a PDF of the full article by Heidi Desch of the Whitefish Pilot.


History channel features northcentral Montana custom cutter

Cut Bank farmer Roger Sammons’ interstate custom-harvest crew will be one of three custom cutters featured on a four-part History Channel show called “Harvest” that starts this Thursday.

Sammons is proud of the honor, but a little wary.

“I’m a bit nervous about what’s going to be on the shows,” he said. “History Channel producers and cameramen spent parts of three weeks with us in Montana, Kansas and Colorado. They had their cameras and microphones running during most of those 16-hour days. They picked up everything and, depending on how they edit it, could make us look like heroes or jerks.”

A promotion on the History Channel’s website indicates the shows will lean toward the dramatic and emphasize the crews’ hard work and valor.

“‘Harvest’ follows three custom-harvesting crews as they dash from border to border on a six-month cannon-ball run, chasing crops and millions in cash,” it says. “As these hard-core harvesters driving monster machines dash from one job to the next, they are only one mistake away from losing a job — or their lives. The clock is always ticking, and man, machine or Mother Nature could wipe them out at any moment. But like true American heroes filled with courage and grit, they put their lives on the line every day because they love what they’re doing.”

Click here for a PDF of the full article by Peter Johnson of the Great Falls Tribune.


BanffLocal filmmaker to screen Banff Grand Prize winning documentary at Procrastinator Theater

BOZEMAN, MT, September 28, 2011 – Devolution Films and the MSU School of Film and Photography will present Mi Chacra (My Land), the feature length documentary debut of MSU alum Jason Burlage, at the Procrastinator Theater in the Strand Union Building on the campus of Montana State University on October 22nd at 6:30pm. Burlage will be in attendance and will answer questions after the screening.

Mi Chacra world premiered at the Starz Denver Film Festival in November of 2009, and has gone on to screen at festivals around the world, including the prestigious Margaret Mead Film Festival at the Museum of Natural History in New York City, and South America’s top documentary festival It’s All True in São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The film has won several awards, including the Grand Prize at the 2010 Banff Mountain Film Festival.

With breathtaking views of the Peruvian Andes as a backdrop, the film tells the story of Feliciano, an indigenous Peruvian farmer who works as a porter on the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu in hopes of some day taking his son to live in the city. Framed by the seasons, Mi Chacra chronicles one year in Feliciano’s life, from the planting season in his community to the harvest, and through a season of work on the Inca Trail. It paints a vivid picture of this man’s world, of the conflict between his love of the land and the desire to see his son living what he sees as a better life in the city.

Burlage studied film in the Media and Theatre Arts program at Montana State University. He first went to Peru as staff and then director for a program that conducted community service projects in small villages in the area known as the Sacred Valley. It was during one trip that a Peruvian friend told him about the situation of the porters on the Inca Trail and the disappearing culture of the indigenous people. Many porters are subsistence farmers who leave their communities to work on the trail and have difficulty adapting to the outside world. Burlage was struck by this story and knew there was a film to be made. He spent a total of five months filming Feliciano and his family.

Tickets for the screening will be $12 for general admission and $10 for students, and can be purchased at the door or in advance at Cactus Records. For more information, go to www.michacrafilm.com, or contact Jason Burlage at jason@michacrafilm.com. Sponsored in part by the MSU School of Film and Photography.

Click here for a PDF of the full press release.

October 2011

Geographic Channel films central Montana Hutterite colony for new series

NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC CHANNEL PHOTO/BEN SHANK  A National Geographic crew is filming a documentary about a Hutterite colony in central Montana, hoping to give viewers an inside look at one of the country’s most misunderstood people. Several weeks ago, the National Geographic Channel began following a Dariusleut colony outside of Lewistown. The network is planning to use the footage in a 10-part series tentatively titled “One Big Family: The Hutterites,” to air sometime in 2012.

Because of a confidentiality agreement, the network declined to name the colony that will be featured but said it is one of the smaller colonies in the state, with just 59 members.

Jeff Collins, the director of the National Geographic Channel production, said the film will show Hutterite people telling their own story without an outside narrator. The series will be told through the colony members’ words and day-to-day interactions. Collins said the story focuses on one particular colony and will not be a commentary on the entire Hutterite population.

“(The colony) is taking somewhat of a risk by doing it this way, and there may be some Hutterites who don’t agree with the way they tell their story,” Collins said. “(But) I think the show is going to be amazing — no one has ever had this kind of access before.”

Collins said viewers might be surprised with how the colony deals with modern problems.

“The documentary is not a valentine, they have problems, trials and tribulations and issues just like any other family does,” Collins said. “The way they solve them is what’s interesting to us because they believe in resolving them when problems come up whereas a lot of families can be passive aggressive and let things fester until it turns into a bad wound that can’t heal anymore.”

Woven into those conflicts is the struggle to determine how many modern conveniences to accept into their lives.

Click here for a PDF of the full article by Jake Sorich of the Great Falls Tribune. Photo credit – National Geographic Channel / Ben Shank.


October 2011

HISTORY’S “Ax Men” Shoots in Northwestern Montana

Original Production crew member names: (left to right) Peter Jones, Thomas Backer, Mitch Long, and Jinna Yun.Emmy Award-winning Original Productions, known for its non-fiction programming featuring everyday heroes in extraordinary situations, is currently shooting its fifth season of HISTORY’s “Ax Men” in northwestern Montana. The reality documentary series follows logging crews as they brave the extreme dangers of the industry.

Northwestern Montana has a long history of logging. Its thick forests have been the source of income to loggers for generations; yet, their beauty remains. Pine, fir and larch trees carpet remote mountainsides and border alpine lakes, providing scenic backdrops to filmmakers who wish to capture the danger or the serenity of the Montana wilderness.

Locations and incentive package, visit www.montanafilm.com.

Click here for a PDF of the P3 Update article. Photo credit Michelle Niland.


October 2011

Locals part of national TV show

America's Most WantedThe TV show “America’s Most Wanted” will feature the search for David Burgert, an ex-militia leader from Flathead County, during the show’s season premier which airs Saturday on Fox. Whitefish folks may recognize a few faces during the show. Morgan Phelps, Brian Cain and R.J. Buzzard all had roles in a reenactment for the show. Local residents Noma Buzzard and Liz Cain also assisted with production for the show.

The “America’s Most Wanted” crew recently spent time in Missoula and the Flathead Valley filming. Reenactments were shot in Lolo and the Trumble Creek area. Many Montana residents, including Flathead and Missoula law enforcement officers, participated in the shoot.

The show, in an episode listed as “50 Fugitives in 50 States,” is featuring the story of David Burgert, who in June shot at Missoula County sheriff’s deputies and fled into the woods. Burgert is known for his affiliation with the group Project 7.

Click here for a PDF of the full article by Heidi Desch of the Whitefish Pilot.


October 2011

History channel features northcentral Montana custom cutter

Cut Bank farmer Roger Sammons’ interstate custom-harvest crew will be one of three custom cutters featured on a four-part History Channel show called “Harvest” that starts this Thursday.

Sammons is proud of the honor, but a little wary.

“I’m a bit nervous about what’s going to be on the shows,” he said. “History Channel producers and cameramen spent parts of three weeks with us in Montana, Kansas and Colorado. They had their cameras and microphones running during most of those 16-hour days. They picked up everything and, depending on how they edit it, could make us look like heroes or jerks.”

A promotion on the History Channel’s website indicates the shows will lean toward the dramatic and emphasize the crews’ hard work and valor.

“‘Harvest’ follows three custom-harvesting crews as they dash from border to border on a six-month cannon-ball run, chasing crops and millions in cash,” it says. “As these hard-core harvesters driving monster machines dash from one job to the next, they are only one mistake away from losing a job — or their lives. The clock is always ticking, and man, machine or Mother Nature could wipe them out at any moment. But like true American heroes filled with courage and grit, they put their lives on the line every day because they love what they’re doing.”

Click here for a PDF of the full article by Peter Johnson of the Great Falls Tribune.


October 2011

Local filmmaker to screen Banff Grand Prize winning documentary at Procrastinator Theater

Mi ChacraBOZEMAN, MT, September 28, 2011 – Devolution Films and the MSU School of Film and Photography will present Mi Chacra (My Land), the feature length documentary debut of MSU alum Jason Burlage, at the Procrastinator Theater in the Strand Union Building on the campus of Montana State University on October 22nd at 6:30pm. Burlage will be in attendance and will answer questions after the screening.

Mi Chacra world premiered at the Starz Denver Film Festival in November of 2009, and has gone on to screen at festivals around the world, including the prestigious Margaret Mead Film Festival at the Museum of Natural History in New York City, and South America’s top documentary festival It’s All True in São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The film has won several awards, including the Grand Prize at the 2010 Banff Mountain Film Festival.

With breathtaking views of the Peruvian Andes as a backdrop, the film tells the story of Feliciano, an indigenous Peruvian farmer who works as a porter on the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu in hopes of some day taking his son to live in the city. Framed by the seasons, Mi Chacra chronicles one year in Feliciano’s life, from the planting season in his community to the harvest, and through a season of work on the Inca Trail. It paints a vivid picture of this man’s world, of the conflict between his love of the land and the desire to see his son living what he sees as a better life in the city.

Burlage studied film in the Media and Theatre Arts program at Montana State University. He first went to Peru as staff and then director for a program that conducted community service projects in small villages in the area known as the Sacred Valley. It was during one trip that a Peruvian friend told him about the situation of the porters on the Inca Trail and the disappearing culture of the indigenous people. Many porters are subsistence farmers who leave their communities to work on the trail and have difficulty adapting to the outside world. Burlage was struck by this story and knew there was a film to be made. He spent a total of five months filming Feliciano and his family.

Tickets for the screening will be $12 for general admission and $10 for students, and can be purchased at the door or in advance at Cactus Records. For more information, go to www.michacrafilm.com, or contact Jason Burlage at jason@michacrafilm.com. Sponsored in part by the MSU School of Film and Photography.

Click here for a PDF of the full press release.