(working title)

A film from Belltower Pictures

‟Stories matter. Stories have been used to dispossess and to malign, but stories can also be used to empower and to humanize. Stories can break the dignity of a people, but stories can also repair that broken dignity.”

Nigerian novelist Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, TEDGlobal 2009

The stories we hear about residents of America’s urban housing projects usually come from news reports. They are lurid stories of violence, gangs and drugs. To most Americans, public housing and urban poverty are “issues” that remain out of sight and out of mind.

In this film, the issues take on human faces. We’ll get to know people who have lived, and some who are now living in “the projects.” We will see and hear them tell their own stories... stories that will make the viewer smile, cry, laugh, and quite possibly get angry.

This is not a dry, issue-focused documentary filled with statistics. It is a family of compelling stories, told in first-person by people who are living their lives in the face of incredible challenges.

Belltower Pictures and VPM, Virginia’s home for Public Media, are partnering on the production and distribution of the film. VPM will air the documentary locally and will offer it for broadcast by other PBS-affiliated stations throughout Virginia after its anticipated completion in the fall of 2020. VPM is providing major funding for the project.

The fortune, the fame, it's all in the game.
Nice cars, big chains: crack to cocaine.
Dope man serving dope man to whomever - rain sleet or snow man.
My illusions came from dudes cruising with broads on Broad Street.
Weekends popping, bodies dropping that's shhh.
Money, power, respect is what I need to be that dude.

(from a poem by Von, one of the people we’re following in the film)

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