Wednesday, March 5th, 7:30pm
Friends of Appalshop NYC Presents: Sludge
Dir. Robert Salyer, 2005, 45 min
Shortly after midnight on October 11, 2000, a coal sludge pond in Martin County, Kentucky, broke through an underground mine below, propelling 306 million gallons of sludge into the rivers and creeks below. Sludge is a documentary that investigates this coal waste disaster and examines the role of federal regulatory agencies in the coalfields. Filmed over four years, the documentary chronicles the aftermath of the spill, the "whistleblower" case of Jack Spadaro, and the looming threat of coal sludge ponds throughout the region.
Along with Sludge, we're excited to be screening an exclusive first look at The Sweet Taste of Freedom, a work in progress by independent producer Jason Myer that documents the 2014 Freedom Industries MCHM chemical spill in the Kanawha Valley of West Virginia that has contaminated the water supply of upwards of 300,000 people. Myer is providing a compelling ground-level view of this ongoing disaster, and we're excited to present this footage publicly for the first time in NYC.
Q&A with filmmaker, Robert Sayler, to follow screening.
Appalshop was founded in 1969 as the Community Film Workshop of Appalachia, one of a group of workshops around the country established through a War on Poverty funding initiative. The workshops were intended to train minorities and the economically disadvantaged in the production and use of film so that they could address the needs of their communities.
50 years after Johnson announces the War on Poverty, we revisit the work of Appalshop through this series, January-March 2014.