You’ve read the blog, soon you will see the the movie.
I have been working with a local film group on a documentary about photographer’s rights and the First Amendment. The title of the film will naturally be Photography is not a Crime.
The movie is in its initial stages, but I have a solid crew who has agreed to work with me on this project, including Bruce Merwin, a veteran filmmaker with more than two decades of professional experience.
So far, we have conducted a few on-camera interviews including one with photojournalist Al Crespo, who is sitting far left in the top photo (I am wearing the headphones and the purple t-shirt).
In 2000, Crespo was photographing a rally during the Democratic National Convention in Los Angeles when LAPD officers shot him several times with rubber bullets.
Below is the photo he shot right before he was shot. And below that, is a photo of Crespo’s wound after he was shot.
The American Civil Liberties Union sued on his behalf and won. Because of that incident, the LAPD had to change their policy when dealing with photojournalists.
Unfortunately, the LAPD did not heed that policy during last year’s May Day demonstration because they again turned Gestapo on photographers and demonstrators.
In the movie, we will interview several photographers who have had violent run-ins with police in their line of work. We also plan to interview judges, lawyers, activists and hopefully even police chiefs.
We also plan to have a video camera in the courtroom during my trial, which is now scheduled for June 16th.
And considering there are at least two news stations that also intend to film the trial, the camera shy prosecutors better be prepared because this time, they will not be allowed to delay the trial.
And we will also film scenes in which I am photographing federal buildings from a public sidewalk to see how long it takes for a police officer or security guard to order me to stop. The video camera will be hidden to allow natural interactions.
We are exploring and seeking different avenues of funding and sponsorship. And we are also seeking volunteers who would like to participate.
If interested, please join our Meetup Group.