Film and Video Productions
Since 1996, we've produced documentaries for Nightline, HBO, and the Travel Channel, and premiered a film (co-produced with director Pete Sillen) at the 2003 Sundance Film Festival.
Branson: Musicland U.S.A (2003)
3 MB Quicktime clip (2:02) 10 MB Quicktime clip (6:59)
A team effort involving director Pete Sillen and Long Haul producer Dan Collison, the 11-minute short film Branson: Musicland U.S.A., weaves Collison's audio portraits with Sillen's black-and-white Super 8 images, collected as they criss-crossed the Missouri boomtown. Characters include country music star Roy Clark, who compares Branson to a Norman Rockwell painting, the children of a minimum-wage processing plant worker, who talk about life in their dilapidated trailer park, and music-loving Comfort Inn housekeeper Flossie Brewer. Flossie tells of her love for the relentlessly upbeat Tony Orlando as she's seen in shadowy silhouette, slowly stamping out a cigarette in a plastic ashtray. The film played to sold-out crowds at the 2003 Sundance Film Festival. Sillen's other films include the great Speed Racer and Benjamin Smoke, which you'll find more about on the Pumpernickel, Inc. website. The original radio story, Branson Postcards, also is available online. Directed by Pete Sillen, Produced by Dan Collison and Pete Sillen. (11:00)
Scenes from a Transplant: A Cancer Diary (2000)
"Scenes" follows National Public Radio health science correspondent Rebecca Perl's battle with cancer. In November 1995, Perl was diagnosed with Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. She learned had a tumor in her chest, six months after giving birth to a baby boy. Months of chemotherapy and radiation proved unsuccessful, leaving only one treatment possibility: a lethal dose of chemotherapy followed by a life-saving bone marrow transplant. This award-winning documentary follows her story through the transplant. We also produced a radio version of this story. Produced by Dan Collison and Tom Jennings. Editor, Rachel Kittner, Senior Editor, Geof Bartz; Supervising Producer John Hoffman, and Executive Producer Sheila Nevins.
Bus Stories (1998)
For the Travel Channel
A neatly dressed woman in her late sixties and her wandering schizophrenic son are on their way home to Kentucky. He left a halfway house in Lexington and ended up on the streets of New York City, then in Bellevue Psychiatric Hospital. She set off alone on a Greyhound to bring him home. A group of men board a bus in the heart of the Mississippi Delta wearing sparkling white uniforms and broad smiles. They've just been released from the infamous Parchmen Farm State Penitentiary. One is headed to see his one-year-old son for the first time. He vows to turn his life around. The eighteen million people who crisscross the country aboard Greyhound buses each year represent the heart of America: full of pain and sorrow, of dignity and resiliency, comprised of oddballs, comedians and dreamers, people leaving and starting over. These are some of their stories. We also produced radio versions of these stories. Produced by Dan Collison and Michael Welsh.