September 25 at 5:30 pm, Greenville Arts Council in conjunction with Robbie Fisher and Dudley Olsson proudly present an evening on inspirational short documentaries and panelist discussion. This event is free and open to the public.
The Greenville Arts Council presents a screening of two Mississippi-made documentaries, Leadway and Will To Change, at the E.E. Bass Cultural Arts Center on Thursday, September 25, 2014. A reception will start at 5:30 p.m. and the screening will begin at 6 p.m. Following the 30-minute screening, there will be a community conversation with a panel of speakers and a Q & A with the filmmakers. The event is free and open to the public.
The two films, shot in the Delta last spring, explore themes of pain and loss, but also hope and healing, and the power of the relationships.
Leadway traces the emotional journey of Cindi Quong Lofton, a native of Shaw, MS, as she deals with the violent death of her father one night at his place of business. After his death, Lofton meets a teenage boy named Willie and commits herself to making sure he stays in school and out of trouble. Will to Change is the story of William Kozielski, a 29-year-old parolee from Clarksdale, MS, who is breaking the cycle of violence in his community, and mentoring youth out of gangs and delinquent behavior.
“Both films are about individuals making the choice to be a positive force in their communities,” said Robbie Fisher, who co-directed Leadway and grew up in Greenville. “It would have been understandable for Cindi to pack up and leave after her father’s death, but she made the decision to stay. She feels her father’s presence in her life.”
Fisher teamed up with childhood friend Dudley Percy Olsson, also from Greenville, to make the documentary after meeting Lofton and hearing her story. Leadway was shot and produced in six days in Shaw, Greenville, and Jackson. Fisher and Olsson undertook the project as part of an intensive “Barefoot Workshop” training, under the tutelage of Chandler Griffin and Alison Fast.
While they were filming, Fisher and Olsson learned about the documentary Will to Change, which was filmed and produced by Fast. After watching the film they began looking for an opportunity to screen both stories in Greenville.
“These are very personal stories, but they represent something much larger,” Olsson said. “They’re about the struggle to find a way forward and have hope.”
The filmmakers will be in attendance to introduce the films and answer questions, along with a panel of experts who will talk about efforts to help young people in the Greenville community.