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Posts from April2014

• My work screening at Chicago Cultural Center this week

Posted by Leonard on April, 23, 2014

14 years ago I was a young filmmaker with a dream job. I was getting paid to wander the streets of Chicago collecting stories with a video camera. It was part of the CITY 2000 project that my good friend Jon Lowenstein had pulled me in to. Chicago In The Year 2000 was the vision of billionaire philanthropist Gary Comer, the owner of Land’s End clothing company. Inspired by the depression era WPA photos of Dorothea Lange and others, his vision was to capture what life was like in the City of Chicago in the Year 2000. He hired a group of full time photographers of which my friend Jon was one, and a small number of videographers that set out to document the city over the course of 12 months. The collection was a gift to the city and is now an archive housed at the Health Sciences Special Collections at The University of Illinois at Chicago that includes over 100 hours of video I filmed in neighborhoods throughout Chicago.

At the end of the year, there was a video that was produced to screen at a show at the Chicago Cultural Center on January 1st, 2001. That video will be shown again at the Chicago Cultural Center this week as part of a larger screening of Chicago documentaries.

Below are two of the stories I filmed that were included in the piece.

“I’ve got a quarter of a million dollars in my pocket, and I still can’t get a fucking cab”

This man’s life story eventually became the film The Pursuit of Happyness starring Will Smith

Dead Cop In Trunk

City 2000 Chicago Cultural Center

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• Filming at Port of Tacoma & Washington Stormwater Center

Posted by Leonard on April, 22, 2014

Spent some time filming last week at the Port of Tacoma and The Washington Stormwater Center. In the port, shipping giant Tote runs twice weekly freight runs between Tacoma and Anchorage Alaska (that takes 66 hours nonstop one way). Tote has had great success in reducing the heavy metals and specifically zinc in their storm water runoff from their property. Working together with 12,000 Rain Gardens of Puget Sound, they’ve installed a series of rain gardens designed to filter and process water runoff. The water which collects on the paved surfaces of their facility and warehouse roofs carrying industrial pollutants and heavy metals, are filtered and absorbed by the garden now prior to it returning to Puget Sound. This video is being produced by Pangeality Productions for Pollution Prevention Research Center, with funding through a grant provided by the Russell Family Foundation, and is geared toward recording and sharing best practices among industries for managing and treating specifically zinc in storm water.

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