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Published on Jul 10, 2012
http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/4... "This is a great corrective to the whole 'exceptionalism' argument that has begun to permeate our political discussions." -KIRK ELLIS, WRITER/PRODUCER OF HBO's "JOHN ADAMS" series.
Hi, I'm Jim Terr. I've produced several documentaries with foundation and other private funding, which have gotten quite a bit of acclaim and visibility despite their low budgets. Here's a link to a short video about THOSE documentaries: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yn6sk1...
I'm asking your support for a new project which I think would be unusually valuable at this time, and inexpensive and simple to put together.
It's called "Living in America." My idea is to collect short interviews with foreigners living in the US, to get their impressions about living here -- what strikes them as strange, what is good, what could be done better, compared to where they are from.
Though I have a particular interest in issues of health care, public life, civic life, family life, etc., I'm not looking to make any point in particular, and I'm certainly not looking to "run America down."
I do believe strongly, however, that there is a very odd attitude called "American Exceptionalism", which I'd like to address simply by making this video. American Exceptionalism -- or one symptom of it -- is the belief that other countries' experiences, what works there, in life and in politics -- is irrelevant to us, because the US is so special, Americans are so different, that human nature and other principles do not apply to us.
Being geographically isolated and in our own world in many ways, we miss the foreign, outside perspective, and this video aims to provide that, and to counteract what I consider the very astounding and dangerous idea that we have nothing to learn from people who were not raised in the US.
As a video producer, I've gotten over 750,000 views on YouTube on my various short videos, and Google lists over 70,000 citations of my various projects, so one thing I will say for myself is that my work does get publicized, and get SEEN.
And one special thing about this project, the "Living in America" documentary, is that the cost to produce will be exceptionally low, because I will use what I'm calling the "Crowd-shot" technique to gather footage. That is, rather than traveling around the country to collect footage, I'll be asking people to SUBMIT short clips of what they'd like to say, what their observations are, and, making sure the audio and video quality are good, that's what I'll put together as the feature-length documentary.
In this way I think I can do a good-quality documentary, suitable for broadcast, for theaters perhaps, for public libraries and schools, for public access channels, for passing around for political discussion purposes -- for under $10,000.
This is the first time I've used Kickstarter to try to raise funding, and contributions will be repaid with copies of the final DVD to give as gifts, or to libraries or whomever you choose -- so I think it's a win-win.** Please pledge to support this project if you can. Thank you.
** I donate my videos to as many schools and libraries as I can - that's part of what I do