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Gen Why The Film

Isabell and Shannon

Isabel Groedel (left) and Shannon Thomas (right)

It’s no secret that there are a lot of uncertainties facing the future. Local filmmakers and recent Tulane grads Shannon Thomas and Isabel Groedel are attempting to help alleviate these uncertainties by creating the project Gen Why the Film.

GWTF is not only attempting to bridge the gap of understanding between generations, but it is also a call to action to our peers—they want to understand who we are, what shapes our experiences, and how we view our place and purpose in the world—both in New Orleans and outside of it.

GWTF currently has a Kickstarter and NolaVie is calling on you to help Shannon and Isabel reach their goal of $75,000. With under a week left, these fimmakers are asking for your help so they can help uncover truths about the future leaders of our country and our beloved city of New Orleans. To give you a little taste of Shannon and Isabel’s perspectives, I had a small Q and A with them.

Q: How would you characterize millenials?

A: A lot of the themes associated with millennials are going to be subtly explored in the film as it captures millennials casually exploring the important relationships in their lives.

As filmmakers, we are staying away from being indulgent or demonstrative. Moreover, we don’t think we have the simple answers to the questions that continue to confront Generation Y. We believe the production process itself will reveal characters – just like you and me – living out the paradoxes of such topics.

Q: What do the two of you want to bring to light with this film?

A: We would like to bring to light the transcendent power of observational documenting, coupled with the power of accumulated trust between filmmaker and character, in getting as close to the truth of a matter as possible – and in our case, harnessing these tools to chronicle the depth and complexity of self-understanding, and of growing and maintaining relationships of all kinds within the digital age.

Q: What do y’all want to see this generation become?

A: Free

Q: How is the landscape of NOLA important in making of this film?

A: In calling ourselves New Orleanian filmmakers, we take the most pride in being New Orleanian artists, which is not just a nice label but also an important obligation. As members of the generation that will soon take on the responsibility of growing our city and being the bold and creative agents of change, we believe our film will garner national attention and praise to the potential, possibility, talent and entrepreneurship that underscore New Orleans as a city.

Q: Why did y’all choose Kickstarter as your fundraising platform? How close are you to meeting your goal?

A: To put it simply, Kickstarter is the easiest way to reach the right people on a wide scale. Unfortunately, major investors aren’t likely considering our project since this is our production company’s first feature (and it’s hard out here without a strong reputation in the film world)!

That being said, we are really counting on a strong grassroots campaign to build our foundation for the first leg of production. Our team has dedicated the last 23 days to mobilizing people – near and far – who believe in our ability to propel this film to its fullest potential. We are currently around the $70,000 mark of our $75,000 goal, with over 120 backers, which you can be a part of by going to our kickstarter page. We would love to reach our goal by our November 23 deadline, so we are calling on our New Orleans community to help us get there.


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