Well, she has some updates about her project that features six families' personal stories coping with different types of diabetes in America.
She and her team are now in the final stages of the filming process. There are just about two weeks left of a fundraising campaign that ends July 23, with the goal of bringing in the additional $40,000 needed to help finish production and pay for costs such as camera, lighting, sound equipment rentals, the crew and editing expenses. Jenny hopes that more in the diabetes community can help support the film and its awareness message, as little more than $6,300 has been raidateas of this afternoon.
This film is a very personal project for the Utah-based Jenny, whose family has three generations living with type 1 diabetes — her aunt, brother, and her 14-year old daughter who was diagnosed a decade ago. Being a well-versed filmmaker, Jenny said her inspiration for this project came after watching many insightful films at the Sundance Film Festival in 2009 and then finding incredibly poignant home video footage of her daughter's diagnosis. She decided to build a story around that scene, telling the story of both types of diabetes that are ravaging our youngest generation.
In the final month of production, the SUGAR BABIES team will continue editing the film through the summer and plan to send a promotional trailer to broadcast venues in hopes of securing a post-production broadcasting partner. Then, the plan is to submit the finished product to the top film festivals in late fall in hopes of an early 2013 premiere.
Jenny took some time for a quick Q&A to let the Diabetes Community know more about her film progress at this time. She was also excited to share the full film trailer, which is now available, and posted below! They also have a Facebook page and on Twitter at @SugarBabiesFilm.
First, the interview:
DM) What's new with the SUGAR BABIES project that the D-Community may not be aware of?
JM) We are very close to completion, and this is an exciting phase in the film-making process, because you are really watching the film take shape and progress every day. We have over 220 hours of footage, and now the challenge is making sure that you use the best pieces to push each of our stories forward, and don't leave any "nuggets" on the cutting room floor!
What were some of the biggest challenges in making this film, and how did you overcome them?
The biggest challenge was having our characters in three different parts of the country and trying to schedule enough time in each place so that we got enough footage of their day-to-day life and struggles. The other challenge for independent filmmakers is always fundraising, and making enough money to produce the film. I am very lucky to have a hard working producing team, and some sponsors who really believe in telling the story of this public health epidemic.
Back in December, you'd already raised a good chunk of your $300,000 budget. Why should individuals be motivated to donate now?
Raising the budget for an independent film is really hard, and most of the funding comes from people who feel passionately about that particular topic. That's why we want to reach out to as many people as possible who are connected to the world of diabetes and say "YOU MATTER, DIABETES MATTERS, and this documentary is for YOU!"
How has the response been to what D-folks have seen of the film so far?
The response has been incredibly positive and deeply humbling for our creative team. So many comments on our Indiegogo site saying "thank you so much," and "we have waiting so long for a film that tells the real stories."
How has this project helped your own family as far as D-management?
For me, as a mom of a T1D, it has made me much more knowledgeable, more empathic with my daughter, but also more anxious as I watch her experience what our teenage character in the film, Prince, is experiencing: diabetes burnout. It's really hard to watch, because I get how frustrating it is for her to not ever get a break from her diabetes, but as her mom I have to push her to be responsible and stay on top of her diabetes.
What are your hopes for the documentary?
We hope that SUGAR BABIES will reach as big an audience as possible. A documentary focused on social change only creates a movement and change if it is seen. We hope that it will screen at many top film festivals across the world, then have a national broadcast premier, and then be screened through our educational outreach campaign at schools, community health and recreation centers across the country.
And now, the SUGAR BABIES trailer: