PUTTING THE PIECES TOGETHER to feature Fabien Cousteau
DSP is extremely pleased to announce Fabien Cousteau's participation in the documentary. Fabien's
expertise in maritime conservation and initiatives will prove invaluable to the completion of the film.
Fabien will be taking part in a small reef restoration effort this spring in the Bahamas.
Along with Dr. Robin Smith, the two are working with locals near Exuma Island to repair damage caused by a ship grounding. Together with other conservationists and students, the effort to repair the damage and restore health to the reef will be documented.
Fabien Cousteau's organization, Plant a Fish (www.plantafish.org) works to encourage the younger generations' interest in marine health and preservation efforts around the world.
In The News
A recent ship grounding near Exuma Islands in the Bahamas got the attention of Dr. Robin Smith, a marine biologist and coral expert. A dedicated coral scientist who has made fascinating discoveries about the nature of Atlantic corals, Dr. Smith has a very pragmatic philosophy when it comes to coral restoration efforts, based on all the scientific data currently available, and one that runs counter to many of those actively trying to restore hard reefs. In this instance, Dr. Smith felt the reconstruction of the reef was practical and necessary, and has been working to maintain the delicate eosystem.
This Spring, DSP will follow Dr. Smith and his project partner, Fabien Cousteau, as they work to repair the damaged reef.
In addition to his coral reef work, Dr. Smith directs a marine educational program called Science Under Sail, where middle-school and high-school students can learn about oceanography and marine biology in an immersive and encouraging environment.
DSP completed a short video for well-known artist/activist Asher Jay. Titled "Blue," Jay discusses
in abstraction how her ecologically based artwork tries to call attention to plight of marine habitats and ecosystems that are plundered, explooited and damaged by humanities actions and inactions.
Shot in one afternoon and featuring rich underwater video in addition to Jay's own illustrations, "Blue" was used as an introduction for one of her presentations.
PUTTING THE PIECES TOGETHER hits Exuma Island
BLUE tells one girl's story of her artistic inspiration
PUTTING THE PIECES TOGETHER wraps production in Exuma
It was a sucessful week of filming in the Bahamas for “Putting the Pieces Together.” Stocking Island, a part of the Exumas, played host to the filmmakers and restoration participants. Volunteers gathered to be a part of the effort to repair a ship-damaged reef. Lost in the accident were stands of endangered staghorn and elkhorn coral that were reduced to fragments.
Catherine Booker, who works in Exuma with a number of conservation efforts, spearheaded the project. Dr. Robin Smith, the lead scientist of the project, brought his coral expertise to bear. Fabien Cousteau brought his Plant A Fish team down with him, and local Bahamians joined in the effort.
For the better part of a week, DSP followed the group as they set about getting the reef in order. Frames were anchored in the seagrass; living fragments of staghorn and elkhorn, as well as some other locally important corals, were gathered in triage areas. The final step in creating the nursery involved bringing the coral fragments up, epoxying them onto stone tiles, and then securing them back on the underwater frames.
Of equal importance were the interviews. Between Fabien talking about hazards facing humanity if the issues of climate change aren’t address, Dr. Smith arguing eloquently about picking and choosing restoration projects based on whether that reef has the long-term ability to bounce back, Catherine explaining the sailboat accident and the resultant damage to the reef, and a local 85-year old environmentalist named Basil who gave some historical perspective, the interviews have filled the holes in the film’s narrative.
Although a follow-up trip may be required for additional footage from Exuma, the pieces are in place to begin assembling this monster in post.
"Putting the Pieces Together" has a new, official Facebook page! All production, post production, Kickstarter and future festival information will be posted regularly on www.facebook.com/puttingthepieces, so be sure to visit and "Like" the page for all the latest scoop.
More importantly, DSP is getting ready to launch a Kickstarter campaign. After nearly five years of production, the film is transitioning to post-production. Recent marine surveys of the Caribbean determined an 80% loss of coral cover since the 1970's. This makes the issues and efforts documented for this project increasingly time sensitive, so finishing this film takes on a new sense of urgency.
To date, this film was funded exclusively through personal investment. If production were to continue this way, it would take another two years, minimum, to fund the remaining needs. To speed this process up, DPS is engaging Kickstarter to host a fundraising campaign.
The post production requirements include replacing the 8-year old, unsupported and obsolete edit system with a new unit to speed up the process; two more excursions for additional footage that is needed to complete the visual story; royalties for music and images; 3D graphics; mastering, audio sweetening, and format conversions for exhibition; software upgrades; and a myriad of other details.
After running the numbers, the minimum cost for completing this film for festivals and broadcast is $17,000. The ideal median target, which substantially increases production values, is $25,000. Out of prudence, the goal for Kickstarter funding was set to $17,000, but the hope is that enough people are engaged with this topic that we can raise $25,000 or more.
Every dollar of Kickstarter funding will wind up on the screen. The only personal disbursements will be for freelance editing assistants, if a certain amounts is achieved. There will be full transparency, with all transactions kept on the blog for review, so contributors will know exactly where their money is going.
To help out, "Like" the new Facebook page. When the Kickstarter is launched, the info will be posted on Facebook first. Go check out the Kickstarter page, see what you can contribute (we have a few cool premiums, like an exclusive on-line "festival" showing, special DVDs and T-shirts), and share the Kickstarter info with your friends who would find this film interesting.
PUTTING THE PIECES TOGETHER on Facebook; Kickstarter for finishing funds
Putting the Pieces Together is deep in post-production, with the first 20 minutes edited. But we are taking a break to help on a most amazing project. For the first week of June we will be supporting Fabien Cousteau's 31 day undersea mission, breaking his grandfathers deep by going twice as deep for a day longer. Check out www.mission-31.com for details about this amazing project.
PUTTING THE PIECES TOGETHER takes a break to work on Mission 31