2019 Sundance Docs in Focus: ALWAYS IN SEASON

Courtesy of Sundance Institute | photo by Washington Post

ALWAYS IN SEASON
Jacqueline Olive interrogates the disturbing, lasting legacy of lynching in America.

Festival Section:
US Documentary Competition

Sundance Program Description:

Claudia Lacy wants answers. When her 17-year-old son, Lennon, was found hanging from a swing set in Bladenboro, North Carolina, the authorities quickly ruled his death a suicide. In light of suspicious details surrounding his death, and certain that her son would not take his own life, Claudia is convinced Lennon was lynched.

Jacqueline Olive’s unwavering debut film puts Lacy’s pursuit for justice into a wider historical context, inspiring a powerful discussion about lynching across racial lines. Appalling accounts of lynchings carried out at the beginning of the twentieth century provide a necessary historical framework, while an annual lynching reenactment in Monroe, Georgia, offers insight about the enduring legacy of racial violence in America. Olive’s layered exploration follows one African-American family’s personal experience with a justice system that has failed so many, while also hinting at the promising first steps of a nation trying to reconcile. Olive’s film honors and acknowledges the injustices that have been inflicted, while emphasizing that only through the uncomfortable conversations and acceptance of our nation’s history will we begin to heal together.

Some Background:
Director/Producer:

  • Jacqueline Olive

    This is Olive’s debut doc feature, which has received support from Sundance Institute’s Documentary Film Program, including the Documentary Edit and Story Lab and Music and Sound Design Lab.

Producer:

  • Multitude Films’ Jessica Devaney

    This marks Devaney’s first film at Sundance, after debuting many of her previous docs at Tribeca, most recently THE FEELING OF BEING WATCHED, ROLL RED ROLL, and CALL HER GANDA. Devaney is a past Women at Sundance fellow and Creative Producing Doc Lab creative advisor.

Co-Producers:

  • Multitude Films’ Lisa Valencia-Svensson and Anya Rous

    This is also the first Sundance project for both Valencia-Svensson and Rous. Their previous work has explored inequality and social justice, with both involved with CALL HER GANDA. The former is an Emmy winner for HERMAN’S HOUSE, while the latter also co-produced THE FEELING OF BEING WATCHED.

Associate Producers:

  • Multitude Films’ Colleen Cassingham

    Cassingham also makes her Sundance debut, and previously associate produced THE FEELING OF BEING WATCHED.

  • Aph Ko

    This is the first project from Ko, a decolonial theorist and author.

Supervising Producer:

  • ITVS’ Michael Ehrenzweig
    Past Sundance docs:

    THE ROYAL ROAD (2015)
    PARAGRAPH 175 (2000)
    THE CELLULOID CLOSET (1996)

    Ehrenzweig joined ITVS after more than a decade producing nonfiction for Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman’s Telling Pictures, ARTE, and other companies.

Consulting Producer:

Executive Producers:

  • Naked Edge Films’ Jim Butterworth and Daniel J Chalfen

    The Peabody and duPont-winning and Emmy-nominated Naked Edge Films co-founders are also executive producers of fellow 2019 Sundance title THE INFILTRATORS, a hybrid in the NEXT section – their first projects at Sundance. Chalfen is a past Sundance Creative Producing Doc Lab creative advisor.

  • Patty Quillin
    Past Sundance docs:

    THE DEVIL WE KNOW (2018)
    INVENTING TOMORROW (2018)
    THIS IS HOME (2018)
    BENDING THE ARC (2017)

    Philanthropist Quillin also executive produced fellow 2019 US Documentary Competition title MOONLIGHT SONATA: DEAFNESS IN THREE MOVEMENTS. She has been a past creative advisor to Sundance’s Catalyst Forum and also supported the 2018 fiction title NIGHT COMES ON and 2017 Sundance VR project THE SKY IS A GAP. Quillin’s husband is Netflix CEO Reed Hastings.

  • ITVS’ Sally Jo Fifer and Lois Vossen
    Combined recent past Sundance docs:

    MINDING THE GAP (2018)
    THE FORCE (2017)
    MOTHERLAND (2017)
    QUEST (2017)

    The President/CEO and Executive Producer of ITVS have regularly provided funding and broadcast support for numerous past Sundance films. They also executive produced fellow 2019 US Documentary Competition titles BEDLAM and
    ONE CHILD NATION. Fifer is also an executive producer of 2019 Documentary Premieres title WORDS FROM A BEAR.

  • Leslie Fields-Cruz

    Fields-Cruz is the executive director of Black Public Media, where, among other achievements, she helped launch the signature public television series AfroPoP. This is her first Sundance credit.

  • Regina K Scully
    Recent past Sundance docs:

    306 HOLLYWOOD (2018)
    GENERATION WEALTH (2018)
    BISBEE ’17 (2018)
    WON’T YOU BE MY NEIGHBOR? (2018)
    STEP (2017)
    UNREST (2017)
    DOLORES (2017)

    The Artemis Rising Foundation founder and CEO is an Emmy-winning and Oscar-nominated social entrepreneur and philanthropist focused on transforming culture through media, education, and the arts. She also executive produced fellow 2019 US Documentary Competition title KNOCK DOWN THE HOUSE and World Cinema Documentary Competition title SHOOTING THE MAFIA.

  • Geralyn Dreyfous
    Recent past Sundance docs:

    306 HOLLYWOOD
    GENERATION WEALTH
    BISBEE ’17
    WON’T YOU BE MY NEIGHBOR?
    OUR NEW PRESIDENT (2018)
    OF FATHERS AND SONS (2018)
    BENDING THE ARC
    STEP

    The Oscar and Emmy-winning co-founder of both Impact Partners and Gamechanger Films also executive produced fellow 2019 Sundance title SHOOTING THE MAFIA in the World Cinema Documentary Competition and produced THE GREAT HACK in Documentary Premieres. She previously executive produced the 2018 VR experience THE SUN LADIES VR and has served as a creative advisor for Sundance’s Catalyst Forum.

Co-Executive Producers:

  • Leslie Berriman and Nion McEvoy
    Past Sundance docs:

    WON’T YOU BE MY NEIGHBOR?
    INVENTING TOMORROW
    CHASING CORAL (2017)
    UNREST

    McEvoy is the chairman and CEO of publishing giant the McEvoy Group, while his partner Berriman is executive editor at textbook publisher Pearson Education. Their philanthropic work encompasses the world of art, film, photography, and music, including the Smithsonian, SFMoMA, and SFJAZZ. They also executive produced 2019 Documentary Premieres title RAISE HELL: THE LIFE & TIMES OF MOLLY IVINS.

  • Katy Drake Bettner
    Past Sundance docs:

    AKICITA: THE BATTLE OF STANDING ROCK (2018)
    DARK MONEY (2018)

    Bettner is a philanthropist, co-founder of gaming studio Playful, and co-founder with Amy Redford of media company BetRed Stories. She is also an executive producer of RAISE HELL: THE LIFE & TIMES OF MOLLY IVINS and THE INFILTRATORS. Bettner also is a member of the Women at Sundance leadership council.

  • Nancy Stephens and Rick Rosenthal
    Past Sundance docs:

    DARK MONEY
    THE DEVIL WE KNOW
    WON’T YOU BE MY NEIGHBOR?
    BENDING THE ARC

    The actress and film/TV director/producer-turned-philanthropists support arts, culture, health, and various progressive causes through the Rosenthal Family Foundation.

  • Barbara Dobkin
    Recent past Sundance docs:

    THE OSLO DIARIES (2018)
    BENDING THE ARC
    STEP
    ICARUS (2017)

    Dobkin is a philanthropist with a focus on supporting projects that serve the advancement of women and girls’ equality and on documentary that ignites social change.

  • Jodie Evans
    Past Sundance docs:

    THE SQUARE (2013)
    THE MOST DANGEROUS MAN IN AMERICA: DANIEL ELLSBERG AND THE PENTAGON PAPERS (2009)

    Evans is a peace and social justice activist with a background in politics.

Editor:

Supervising Editor:

Consulting Editor:

Advising Editor:

Assistant Editor:

Why You Should Watch:
The tragic story of Lennon Lacy serves as a troubling present-day entry point to a far-ranging and imperative reckoning with the history and continued existence of systemic racism and violence in American society.

More Info:
Website
Facebook
Twitter
Instagram
Sundance’s Meet the Artist profile

For Sundance screening dates and times, click the film title in the first paragraph.

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Filed under Documentary, Film, Film Festivals, Recommendations, Sundance

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