Member News & Events

11.14.14 Chicago Premiere "Free Speech & the Transcendent Journey of Chris Drew, Street Artitst" at Logan Theatre

Posted: 10/29/2014 by Nancy Bechtol

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"Art IS Speech!" The amazing and true story of one artist who came forward to first challenge the Peddler's Ordinance, by selling Art for a Dollar- and ends up challenging the Illinois Eavesdropping Law,
and wins! Chicago local story with national impact. Music by Behind the Sun- Andy Alton and David Mansfield, "Paper Airplane" - courtesy of Premiere. 11.14.14 Chicagol

Minneapolis and New York Game Show Dynamos

Posted: 10/29/2014 by Patricia Boiko

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Come see the documentary that seamlessly blends animation, motion graphics and footage from 8mm to VHS to HD into the story of how a high school teacher husband and a successful children's playwright wife needed to go on TV game shows to get their family out of debt. Game Show Dynamos is the story of Claire and Bernard who appeared on TV game shows from the 1950's to the 1990's- hard to prove but it looks like they set a record.
In NY and Minneapolis if enough people reserve tickets on Tugg:
Minneapolis Premiere
NY Premiere

A couple gets their family out of debt by winning on TV game shows again and again

Posted: 10/29/2014 by Patricia Boiko

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The film is Game Show Dynamos and features the parents of IDA member and documentary filmmaker, Patricia Boiko. Now she is trying to get her documentary out of debt with distribution. Maybe, she should just try for a game show. She had a great start, though, with Game Show Dynamos premiering to a sold out crowd in Seattle. It helped to have Jeopardy! champ not only heartily endorse the film but go head-to-head against the Game Show Dynamos 89 year old star, Claire Boiko, in a preshow trivia match. Next up is a trial of Tugg so if you know anyone in Minneapolis or NY please send them her way.

Chicago Premiere 11.14.14 at Logan Theatre "Free Speech & the Transcendent Journey of Chris Drew, Street Artist"

Posted: 10/27/2014 by Nancy Bechtol

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Excellent Tech Check at Logan Theatre - from Projection Booth! It was amazing to see the film- shot in 5 formats from DSLR to Cell and whatever I had at the time) that took 5 years (plus clips from 10 yrs ago of peace marches in 2002 and on the streets, including Occupy 2011 and the Critical Mass tribute ride for Chris 2012)(with Orlando, tech projectionist-- is surrounded with films high above all and makes the magic happen) 102 seats theatre 2- secretly known as the haunted theatre. The spirits welcomed the film! "Free Speech & the Transcendent Journey of Chris Drew, Street Artist" (99 min) film by Nancy Bechtol. Music by Behind the Sun- Andy Alton & David Mansfield-"Paper Airplane" courtesy of Hey Now Records. In gratitude for being able to tell the story, finally. hope you can see this one. very Chicago with the deep commitment of a determined spirit, Chris Drew. Yes, the Spirits of Theatre 2 welcomed him. smile.

"Threads" first film festival showing

Posted: 10/21/2014 by Cathy Stevulak

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IDA-sponsored film Threads won Best Short Documentary at the Gig Harbor Film Festival October 19.

The GHFF is a director-friendly festival that we highly recommend.

Diverse Voices in Docs seeks applicants!

Posted: 10/16/2014 by Kartemquin Films

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Applications are now being accepted for our DVID 2015 program!

Diverse Voices in Docs (#DVID) is a professional development and mentorship program for documentary makers of color, organized by Kartemquin Films and the Community Film Workshop of Chicago.

At the core of the fellowship are six engaging three-hour workshops at the Community Film Workshop, with creative advice provided by Kartemquin Films’ world-class staff and associates. Each session will provide practical skill-enrichment designed to help incubate your next documentary project, as well as time to network and share experience with your cohort of participants.

Applicants should be filmmakers who have played a principal role in a completed production (producer, writer, director, editor, etc.) and have experience or work history that demonstrated their commitment to social issue documentary. We will facilitate continued engagement throughout the six-month workshop program, and connect you to an expert community, new collaborators, and a wider network of funders and distributors. The program will culminate in exposure through a final public exhibition.

For more information on the program please email Beckie Stocchetti, Kartemquin Community Engagement Manager.


Greenpeace Student Film Contest! Great judges, great prizes, for your great climate change story.

Posted: 10/15/2014 by Melissa Thompson

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Greenpeace Student Film Contest!

Share your story of climate change -

The panel of judges includes well-known documentary filmmakers (Tia Lessin and Carl Deal), as well as climate change experts (Keya Chatterjee). Entries should demonstrate excellence in filmmaking and tell a unique regional climate change story. Entries should be 5-10 minutes in length.

Finalist films will premiere at The Center for Environmental Filmmaking (as part of the Environmental Film Festival in The Nation’s Capital) in March 2015. The first place winner will receive a cash prize of $500 and an all-expense paid trip to the DC premiere. Additionally, finalist films will be featured on the Postcards From Climate Change website, Greenpeace YouTube channel, and Greenpeace blog.

Deadline: Jan 5, 2015.

New Documentary Film "Overshare: Crime In The Digital Age" Now In Production.

Posted: 10/12/2014 by Sybil Drew

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New Documentary Film, 'Overshare: Crime in the Digital Age' is now in production. The film chronicles the rise of Social Media, Cyber & Computer Crime. Expected release date is 2016.

Tags: Academy Archive  
Social Impact Media Awards - SIMA 2015 CALL FOR ENTRIES !!! Final Deadline Approaching

Posted: 10/11/2014 by Daniela Kon

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FILMMAKERS & CHANGEMAKERS submit your films to the 3rd annual Social Impact Media Awards (SIMA).
SIMA's global documentary competition and traveling series honors eye-opening impact films from around the world that inspire activism, compassion and social transformation.

International DOCUMENTARY FEATURES and SHORTS that provide deeper insight into the realities of global development, global activism, and the human condition, as well as IMPACT VIDEOS that illuminate “How Impact Works”, capturing innovative development, education, and social justice initiatives.

EARLY BIRD DEADLINE: September 25, 2014
REGULAR DEADLINE: October 9, 2014
LATE DEADLINE: October 27, 2014

Dedicated to advancing global awareness, social justice, human rights, and humanitarian development, SIMA catalyzes creative works of visual storytelling that exemplify excellence in their potential to inspire change.


Film Premiere Recalls Street Artist Who Fought Illinois Eavesdropping Law

Posted: 10/01/2014 by Nancy Bechtol

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Film Premiere Recalls Street Artist Who Fought Illinois Eavesdropping Law
September 29, 2014 | Filed under: Politics is Local,The Media | Chicagotalks
Chris Drew in his studio. Photo credit: Patrick Boylan

You can attend the Chicago Premiere of an Indie feature documentary film that was made right here in the Windy City – “Free Speech & the Transcendent Journey of Chris Drew, Street Artist” (99 min) 2014, by Nancy Bechtol.
In 2009, Chris asked Nancy (with 2 friends) to accompany him and document his attempt to get arrested for peddling art patches with messages of social awareness and artistic ideas to challenge Chicago’s Peddler’s Ordinance.
Chris was arrested for selling art patches for $1, (peddling) but since he had a personal tape recorder, charges changed to a felony violation of Illinois’ Eavesdropping Law by Illinois State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez, which carried 4-15 years in jail if convicted. In 2009 this law was generally unknown. Two pro bono attorneys defended him. First, Mark Weinberg challenged on the free speech constitutional ground; then Joshua Kutnick, criminal defense, defended and won in the courtroom of Judge Sachs on the felony charges in 2012.
● Event Location: Logan Theatre 2646 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago
● When: November 14, 2014 Friday 6:30 doors open — 7:30 p.m. film starts

Everything changed. From his arrest, for making an audio recording of his own arrest, to his untimely death from lung cancer, the film tracks Chris’ activism around Free Speech, his connections to the community, his connection to street artists in Chicago and internationally, and his transcendent belief in Free Speech. The film is a colorful trip through Chicago’s Occupy and Anti-War protests, Critical Mass bike rides, and more, as you learn about a real American patriot who believed that art, thought, and free speech were worth fighting for.
Note: The Illinois Supreme Court overturned the Ill Eavesdropping Law, March 2014.

The film includes interviews with his lawyers and with all kinds of people who worked with Chris from the American Indian Center and elsewhere, and those that knew him, including lawmaker Rep. Elaine Nekritz, who got involved in the struggle to overturn the draconian Illinois Eavesdropping Law.

Nancy Bechtol, an award winning photographer and artist, has been documenting social justice and Chicago street artists for 30 years. This film is a departure from anything she has ever done, evolved over five years and was shot on five different formats, including DSLR to cellphones.

Featured throughout is the Indie music, courtesy of Hey Now Records, by Behind the Sun, Andy Alton and David Mansfield.

Chris Drew, who passed away 2012, was the longtime executive director of The Uptown Multi-Cultural Arts Center (UM-CAC) located in the American Indian Center.
Trailer is on listed on IMDb

Music in the film courtesy of Hey Now Records. “Paper Airplane” Behind the Sun. Andy Alton /David Mansfield
Contact information:

Contact for Tickets/Screening information: Logan Theatre 2646 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago, IL 60647 773.342.5555. at the box office and online.