Twenty young filmmakers are in Iowa to shoot a documentary about a few of the hundreds of Iowa National Guard members who responded to this year’s record flooding. Alana Bardauskis, spokeswoman for Dreaming Tree Films, says the documentary is a way to tell the story of some of the state’s unknown heroes, citizen-soldiers who frequently risk their lives for public safety.
Bardauskis says, "This initiative, which is called N-G Docs , is an initiative to give young documentarians the access and the opportunity to really tell the story of the people and the communities that were affected by the Iowa flood in a really unique way." The filmmakers in Iowa this week range in age from 17 to 22 and are from as far away as California and New Hampshire.
Bardauskis says the students will be given wide access to the Guard, in addition to visiting with residents in the communities the soldiers helped during the worst of the flooding — and in the clean-up and reconstruction phases.
"These young filmmakers are coming in from all over the country," she says. "They’ll be working together along with pulling from the expertise of the Iowa Army National Guard who were so integral to the rehabilitation and rebuilding efforts that happened across the state to share the story of the Iowa flood with America."
One of the Iowa Guardsmen the team will be following is Captain David Harper of Packwood, a ten-year military veteran who’s also the principal and football coach of Packwood Community School. Bardauskis says the documentary will highlight the people behind the uniform, people like Harper, who live and work in the communities they serve.
"Many of the National Guardsmen and women have been personally affected by the flood and due to the nature of the situation at hand, had to pack up and leave their homes mid-flood, leave the damage of their own lives behind to help save and support people who are strangers," she says.
The filmmakers will be in Iowa through Sunday. The documentary will be showcased next month at AFI FEST Hollywood, one of the nation’s most renowned film festivals.