Katrina Documentary Filmmakers To Give Screenings And Talks At Ithaca College

ITHACA, NY — The producers and directors of “Trouble the Water,” the Oscar-nominated documentary about Hurricane Katrina, will screen their film and talk about their work in two appearances at Ithaca College. The presentations by Tia Lessin and Carl Deal — who were also producers on Michael Moore’s “Fahrenheit 9/11” and “Bowling for Columbine” — are free and open to the public.

Trouble the Water” will be shown on Tuesday, Sept. 15, at 7:30 p.m. in Emerson Suites, Phillips Hall. It will be followed by a question-and-answer session with Lessin and Deal. On Wednesday, Sept. 16, they will show excerpts from their works and discuss the “Agonies/Ecstasies of Independent Filmmaking” at 7 p.m. in Park Auditorium.

“Trouble the Water” opens the day before Hurricane Katrina makes landfall — just blocks away from the French Quarter but far from the New Orleans that most tourists know. Kimberly Rivers Roberts turns her new video camera on herself and her 9th Ward neighbors trapped in the city. As the storm begins to rage and the floodwaters fill their world, Kim and her husband, Scott, continue to film their harrowing retreat to higher ground and the dramatic rescues of friends and neighbors. Seamlessly weaving these home movies with archival news segments and footage shot over two years, Lessin and Deal document a journey of remarkable people surviving failed levees, bungling bureaucrats and armed soldiers to seize the chance for a new beginning.

Nominated for a 2009 Academy Award in the feature documentary category, “Trouble the Water” earned the Sundance Film Festival’s Grand Jury Prize and the Gotham Independent Film Award.

Prior to teaming up to work on “Bowling for Columbine” and “Fahrenheit 9/11,” Lessin and Deal had each gained extensive documentary experience. Lessin’s credits include Martin Scorsese’s “No Direction Home: Bob Dylan” and the Oscar-nominated “Shadow of Hate,” and she earned two Emmy nominations for the television series “The Awful Truth.” She was honored with the Women of Worth Vision Award by L’Oréal Paris and the Hillman Prize for Broadcast Journalism for her documentary short “Behind the Labels.” Deal earned his graduate degree in journalism from Columbia University, which awarded him the Sander Social Justice Prize. He has worked as an international news producer and authored investigative reports for Greenpeace, Amnesty International and Public Citizen. He was the archival producer for 2007’s “The War on Democracy,” a rebuke of U.S. intervention in Latin America.

In addition to their public presentations, Lessin and Deal will meet with small groups of students during their visit, which is sponsored by the Park Center for Independent Media (PCIM). Based in the Roy H. Park School of Communications, the PCIM was launched in 2008 as a national center for the study of media outlets that create and distribute content outside traditional corporate systems and news organizations.

For more information contact Jeff Cohen, director of the PCIM, at or (607) 274-1330.

Originally published in News Releases: Katrina Documentary Filmmakers To Give Screenings And Talks At Ithaca College.

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