Sunday, February 04, 2007

Anytime, Anywhere

One of the most challenging components of this film (shooting with no budget while working full time and wrestling with a vast and complicated narrative notwithstanding) is the disappointment of hearing my heroes say, "No thanks" to my requests for their participation.

Our track record has been really good. Amy Hollingsworth, Bo Lozoff, Tim Madigan, Susan Stamberg, Tim Russert, Marc Brown and Linda Ellerbee agreed in a heartbeat to participate. In the last few weeks, though, we've met some resistance with Bill Moyers and Garrison Keillor.

What follows is my latest appeal to Mr. Keillor:

    Thank so much for following up, [Name Redacted].

    Given that our documentary is, at its core, an exploration of depth and simplicity in modern culture -- a subject on which Mr. Keillor's perspective is unique and undisputed -- is there any possibility that diminishing the urgency of our ask and duration of our proposed interview might improve the odds that Mr. Keillor reconsider?

    Example, is there any chance we could do a three-minute stand-up backstage prior or subsequent to one of Mr. Keillor's Town Hall performances in March? Of course, we will gladly travel anywhere, anytime, I just want to introduce the possibility of quickly asking Mr. Keillor to comment on the value of good, old fashioned, unhurried storytelling in this accelerated, short-attention span age.

    In summary: backstage, no set up, three minutes, pure intentions and huge gratitude.

    Most sincerely, and most hopefully yours,

    Benjamin Wagner
I have no doubt that these gentleman will make excellent contributions to our exploration of seeking, finding, and creating substantive communication in these vacuous times, so I haven't thrown in the towel on either of them.

All I can do is hope that some small small bit of light from this most geniuine, most heartfelt mission can shine through my letters and emails, and inspire them, in some way, to remember their thirties, remember their struggles, and lend a helping hand to a well intentioned, complete stranger.

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