PROGNOSIS – notes on living AT THE SAN FRANCISCO JEWISH FILM FESTIVAL
JULY 25, 2021, 12PM PST
Join us for the first live screening of PROGNOSIS – notes on living! The film will screen at the Castro Theatre Sunday, July 25 — and stream at any point during the Festival (July 22 – August 1). The live screening will be accompanied by a live Q&A with Co-Director Kate Stilley Steiner, and Producers Nancy Otto and Lidia Szajko, Debra Chasnoff’s sons Noah Chasnoff and Oscar Klausner, and Traci Dobronravova, Director, Seniors At Home at Jewish Family and Children’s Services.
WATCH WHAT WE CARRY WITH US ON YOUTUBE
THURSDAY, JULY 15, 2021
LGBTQ+ refugees tell their stories in micro-documentaries streaming free on YouTube! Check out the latest suite of micro-docs directed by Sam Ball in refugee storylabs produced by Citizen Film with support from the Creative Work Fund and the San Francisco Arts Commission in collaboration with Frameline, the organization behind San Francisco’s International LGBTQ+ Film Festival.
BRIDGING ACTIVISM AND STORYTELLING WITH SOPHIE CONSTANTINOU
THE GLEN PARK ASSOCIATION
For years, Citizen Film co-founder Sophie Constantinou has actively partnered with communities around the Bay Area to tell stories that mobilize residents and catalyze tangible change, particularly in San Francisco’s Buchanan Mall and Bernal Cut neighborhoods. The major growth and development the two communities have seen in just the last five years is a testament to what local activists can accomplish with teamwork and a little entrepreneurial spirit. The Glen Park Association recently interviewed Sophie about her connection to filmmaking and empowering communities through storytelling that inspires activism.
“‘Prognosis’: S.F. documentarian turns camera on herself as she battles cancer”
J. – THE JEWISH NEWS OF NORTHERN CALIFORNIA
“‘It’s an amazing feeling to feel like we finished Chas’ legacy,’ Nancy Otto said. ‘This was a lasting thing that she wanted to give.'”
WHAT WE CARRY WITH US: LGBTQ+ REFUGEE STORYLAB AT FRAMELINE
SUNDAY, JUNE 20, 2021
When you nearly lose everything, what do you cherish most? This year, we’re celebrating Pride with the world premiere of the latest micro-documentaries created in refugee storylabs produced by Citizen Film. The films will be showing June 20, World Refugee Day, in front of select features at Frameline45, the San Francisco International LGBTQ+ Film Festival.
WORLD PREMIERE OF PROGNOSIS – notes on living
JUNE 19, 2021, 4PM PST
When Oscar-winning documentary filmmaker Debra Chasnoff is diagnosed with stage-4 cancer, she and her wife Nancy turn the camera on themselves and their LGBTQ family to create an emotionally raw, sometimes funny, and always intimate story about hanging onto life and love, even as you prepare to let it go. Experience the world premiere of PROGNOSIS – notes on living for FREE at this year’s Frameline Film Festival.
“In ‘Prognosis,’ a filmmaker faces her death, but the Frameline film is about life”
“In 2015, Academy Award-winning director Debra Chasnoff made an interesting decision when she was diagnosed with stage four breast cancer: She decided she didn’t want to know how much time she had left. Instead, she just wanted to live. During whatever time she had left. Of course, as was in the San Francisco filmmaker’s DNA, she picked up a camera to document it.”
THE RIFLEMAN’S VIOLIN AT THE GI FILM FESTIVAL SAN DIEGO
TERMINAL 2 WEST THRU JUNE 1, 2021
Meet the GI who fiddled for Stalin on the eve of the Cold War. A short documentary directed by Sam Ball and produced by Abraham D. Sofaer for the Hoover Institution Library & Archives is on display in San Diego International Airport’s Terminal 2 West through June 1, 2021. View more from the Archive at potsdamrevisited.org, and learn about a remarkable intersection of history and music experienced by Stuart Canin, who would go on to win the Paganini Prize and serve as concertmaster for the San Francisco Symphony.
THE BUCHANAN MALL OPPORTUNITY HUB
For years, Citizen Film has partnered with Black entrepreneurs in San Francisco’s Western Addition to tell their stories and build community. Now, we’re partnering with Buchanan Change Initiative on an exciting new project. The Opportunity Hub, a technology-equipped and expandable kiosk co-designed with local artists and micro-entrepreneurs, will serve as an innovative resource to all who visit the Buchanan Mall. From business activation to entertainment to education, the Hub will increase the visibility of local and primarily Black-owned businesses and propel the Western Addition to a better future.
ADVENTURES IN VIRTUAL ART
WEDNESDAYS IN APRIL & MAY 2021, 5-7PM PT
17 years ago, multimedia artist Tucker Stilley was struck with ALS. Now fully paralyzed, he uses his eyes to control his computer and create art at a dizzying pace. Next month, Citizen Film’s Kate Stilley Steiner teams up with her brother and partner orgs Virtual Ability, Inc and the Cohort of Disembodied Artists to give guided tours of Tucker’s latest work at the Cape Able Art Gallery in the virtual world of Second Life – work the LA Times describes as “breathtaking images of the frailty and strength of the human condition.”
STORIES FROM THE ARC SF
THURSDAY, MARCH 25, 2021
Meet the residents and workers of The Arc SF, the Bay Area’s largest learning and resource center for individuals with developmental disabilities and Citizen Film’s newest partner. Even during the ongoing pandemic, The Arc SF remains dedicated to their mission of empowering their clients to live lives with dignity, self-determination, and independence. We’re documenting those efforts, from work training sessions to community events, in our new series of shorts available to watch now.
WHAT WE CARRY WITH US @ JEWISH COMMUNITY CENTER OF SAN FRANCISCO
MARCH 16 – APRIL 9, 2021
We asked refugees and descendants to curate some of their prized possessions for a new multimedia exhibition exploring connections between the ancient Jewish people’s escape from Egypt and the resilience of modern-day refugees. Catch microdocs from “What We Carry with Us” at Fort Mason Flix or visit the JCCSF’s website to enjoy them along with resources to elevate your seder table discussions this Passover!
CITIZEN FILM IS NOW ACCEPTING INTERN APPLICATIONS
DEADLINE: MIDNIGHT PST ON FEBRUARY 19, 2021
As a Citizen Film Intern, you will have the opportunity to research a wide variety of topics, assist in running media engagement campaigns, and more as you immerse yourself in the world of documentary filmmaking. This remote internship is especially valuable for applicants in the last year of their undergraduate degree (or later) but all are welcome to apply! If you’re interested, please email your cover letter and resume to firstname.lastname@example.org.
FREE VIRTUAL AMERICAN CREED SCREENING
THURSDAY, JANUARY 14, 2020 – 4PM PST, 7PM EST
It has never been more important–or more accessible, no matter where you are in the country–to come together and discuss America’s identity and our ideals. Join us for a FREE VIRTUAL screening of our PBS documentary AMERICAN CREED followed by a discussion with director Sam Ball and a panel convened by the Jewish Community Center of the North Shore (MA) and open to everyone, around the country. Email Sara Ewing at email@example.com for the screening and discussion links.
AN EVENING WITH DAVID GODLIS FEATURING PLEASURES OF URBAN DECAY
SATURDAY, DECEMBER 26, 2020
In conjunction with the recent publication of his latest book, Godlis Streets, Metrograph hosted a night of films and reminisces with renowned NYC photographer David Godlis, who specializes in punk and cinema. Citizen Film co-founder Sam Ball joined a panel of fellow filmmakers who have collaborated with Godlis and spoke about his documentary short, PLEASURES OF URBAN DECAY.
YOUTH LEADERS IGNITE THE SPIRIT OF THE FILLMORE
BY SADIE MCCANN, YOUTH JOURNALIST
TUESDAY, DECEMBER 8, 2020
“Down at the Buchanan Street Mall, a six block long park in the Fillmore district of San Francisco, you’ll find youth leaders Widya Batin, Sasha Earle, and Meseka Garcia on a mission: preserving the soul of the neighborhood and using art to keep the memories alive.”
Youth journalist Sadie McCann reflects on the inspiration these leaders and those around the world provide for herself and the rest of Gen Z.
CITIZEN FILM AND ARTPLACE: STORYTELLING TO INSPIRE CHANGE
WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 28, 2020 – 12:15 PM PST, 3PM EST
Can documentary storytelling help community activists and entrepreneurs revitalize their neighborhoods? Zoom in for Sophie Constantinou and Tamara Walker’s virtual multimedia presentation about how Citizen Film and our community partners bring people together to tell stories, make art, and build trust between the community and government agencies to build healthy public spaces that foster resilience on San Francisco’s Buchanan Mall.
DID YOU MISS US AT THE DRIVE-IN?
TUESDAY, OCTOBER 27, 2020 – 8PM PST, 11PM EST
Explore the complicated history of African Americans’ place in San Francisco politics in AFRICAN AMERICANS AND THE VOTE – a collaboration between Citizen Film and the San Francisco African American Historical and Cultural Society. African Americans and the Vote features San Francisco’s first Black mayor, Willie Brown, and members of the next generation of leadership.
LIVE KONZERTKASTS KEEP THE LIGHTS ON
FRIDAY, OCTOBER 30, 2020 – 4:30PM PST, 7:30PM EST
When shelter-in-place orders stripped musicians of their livelihood, we hatched a plan to produce a live-streaming series that pays musicians to perform on social media. The LIVE KonzertKast series, hosted by Music Director Urs Leonhardt Steiner and produced by Kate Stilley Steiner, has generated over 75,000 views worldwide… so far!
THE RIFLEMAN’S VIOLIN AT THE GI FILM FESTIVAL SAN DIEGO
THURSDAY, OCTOBER 1, 2020
At age 19, in 1944, Stuart Canin shipped off to fight Nazi soldiers with his rifle. He’d made a name for himself as a violin prodigy, so he brought along an instrument, “just in case.” In July, 1945, President Truman thought music might break the ice of negotiations to end WWII, and the army called on Canin again: to play for Winston Churchill and Joseph Stalin. Director Sam Ball, Producer Abraham D. Sofaer, and subject Stuart Canin accompanied their film, THE RIFLEMAN’S VIOLIN, to this year’s (virtual) GI Film Festival San Diego.
WATCH VOTE BY DESIGN AT THE COMMONWEALTH CLUB
THURSDAY, OCTOBER 15, 2020
What happens when 18-year-olds from Oakland to Appalachia come together to imagine the future of the presidency? Catch the recent Commonwealth Club conversation between filmmaker Sam Ball, Vote by Design creator Lisa Kay Solomon and moderator Gerald Harris as they explore what collaborative problem-solving between next gen voters shows us about the potential of American democracy.
JFI FILM OF THE MONTH: WENDY MACNAUGHTON DRAWS CASTRO COMMONS
Long before lockdowns, artist Wendy MacNaughton and filmmaker Sam Ball spent an afternoon together in a beloved San Francisco “parklet.” We’re pleased to announce that the Jewish Film Institute named the resulting short documentary their October 2020 “Film of the Month” and hosted Wendy MacNaughton and Sam Ball in conversation.
BUCHANAN STORIES / BUCHANAN CHANGE WINS “OUR TOWN” AWARD
WEDNESDAY, JULY 1, 2020
Citizen Film has been awarded an NEA “Our Town” grant of $100,000 to help Black-owned businesses tell their own stories and generate support for improvements on the Buchanan Mall, a five-block walkway in the once famous Fillmore Jazz District. Citizen Film has been collaborating with community artists, activists and entrepreneurs on the mall to co-create short films, documentary murals and multimedia installations that celebrate neighborhood activism.
ROSA PARKS SENIOR CENTER MURAL UNVEILING
SUNDAY, AUGUST 4, 2019
The newest milestone in Citizen Film’s ongoing creative placemaking efforts to revitalize the Buchanan Mall has been unveiled! Head down to the Rosa Parks Senior Center (1111 Buchanan St, San Francisco) to see the gorgeous new mural created in partnership with the Bay Area Mural Program.
CHOP SHOP: A COMMUNITY AND LAW ENFORCEMENT CONVERSATION
FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 7, 2018
Join us at The Bernal Heights Neighborhood Center (515 Cortland Avenue, San Francisco) for a screening of two shorts: Chop Shop: a Community and Law Enforcement Conversation and In The End, What’s Our Difference? Created in collaboration with Young Community Developers (Chop Shop) and Collective Impact + SFPD (In the End), this program is part of the Bernal Heights Outdoor Cinema‘s film crawl, an evening of community and films, and meant to facilitate a youth-lead dialogue between San Francisco residents of color and local law enforcement in barbershops across the city.
AMERICAN CREED PREMIERES NATIONWIDE ON PBS
THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 27, 2018
In the documentary film AMERICAN CREED, former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Pulitzer Prize-winning historian David M. Kennedy come together from different backgrounds and points of view to investigate the idea of a unifying American creed. The premiere of this PBS special is at the center of a robust public engagement campaign including community conversations, classroom activities and local storytelling across the country.