stories happen in forests documentary impact distribution

What an amazing journey we have been on kicking off the documentary impact distribution of the short film, “Stories Happen in Forests”. You can read all about how the film got going with my friends Amanda Rodriguez, director and Andrea Desky, director of photography here. After the film was created, I came on board as distribution producer and jumped in creating the film trailer, film poster, key art, electronic press kit (EPK), and so much more to get the film out into the world. We created a website and built a Film Freeway profile. Then, I did a deep dive into researching film festivals that would reach new communities where Dogwood Alliance works – in the Southeast United States – as well as international impact film festivals and film festivals with unique opportunities to connect these beautiful forest stories with new audiences.


We won!
Winner, Cinema Verde International Film Festival, 2021
Winner, Impact Docs Awards, 2020
Winner, Southern States Indie Film Fest, 2020
Semi-Finalist, Southeast Regional Film Festival, 2020
Official Selection, Fist Up Film Festival, 2020
Official Selection, Real to Reel International Film Festival, 2020
Official Selection, Cat Fly Indie Film Festival, 2020
Official Selection, Connect Beyond Festival, 2020
Official Selection, Southern Screen Film Festival, 2020
Official Selection, Big Syn International Film Festival UN SDG, 2020

We screened the film in communities throughout the Southeast United States:
Gainesville, Florida
Jacksonville, Florida
Biloxi, Mississippi
Lafayette, Louisiana
Asheville, North Carolina
Kings Mountain, North Carolina

We screened the film at international environmental justice and impact focused festivals based in:
London, England, United Kingdom
Oakland, CA
Hollywood, CA

We participated in film festivals in partnership with film critics and received rave reviews:

“An enchanting look into the phenomenal potential of nature’s/the outdoors influence on various aspects of any person’s life – from spirituality, to social identity, to artistic value, to scientific properties – all of these facets are examined through the stories of different individuals with their own unique backgrounds and perspectives. Shot and edited exquisitely. Simply marvelous on so many levels.”
(BFCA) Broadcast Film Critics Association
“A remarkable narrative concept by using chapters to weave several mini-stories about “nature and the forests.” This was beautiful from a “story” level and the technical achievements were stellar. The stories cover so many aspects of life: medicine, spiritual life, art, recreation, food, social connections, disability, community…it truly was a beautiful way to find connections to the life of nature.”
(BFCA) Broadcast Film Critics Association

We participated in film festivals with media partnerships and got the message out:

Cinema Verde International Film Festival Audience Choice Award Interview with director Amanda Rodriguez

Speaking of Travel + Climate Listening Project iHeart Radio Interview Award Announcement

Elements of Madness Real Conversations Interview with director Amanda Rodriguez

We engaged with communities for action on online film festival panel discussions during COVID

Film director Amanda Rodriguez filmed a short video distributed through The Big Syn International Film Festival network: the world’s biggest not for profit, online film festival inspiring viewers to act on the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. Last year it had an estimated 1 million viewers, voters and visitors, of which more than 85% were made aware of the UN SDGs via the festival for the very first time. That in essence is close to a million lives inspired to do their part in meeting the SDGs by 2030, through their own initiatives or in collaboration with others. In this interconnected world, these initiatives are benefiting you and me.

Film director Amanda Rodriguez spoke on an online panel discussion at the Fist Up Film Festival, an amazing event in Oakland, CA, presenting films that are intended to create impact, inspire discussion and foster understanding.

And we partnered with Cat Fly Film Festival in Asheville, NC to screen separate shorts from the film throughout the film festival – reaching more people throughout the weekend event. Plus, film director Amanda Rodriguez spoke on an online panel discussion connecting forests with independent arts communities in Asheville, North Carolina, and the Southeast.

YAY! What’s next?

Thank you to all who have been a part of this journey! Dogwood Alliance is celebrating their 25th Anniversary and will be screening the film as part of their celebration. Join them! Plus, connect with them if you would like to screen the film in your community!

Dogwood Alliance has worked for more than 20 years with diverse communities, partner organizations and decision-makers to protect Southern forests across 14 states. We do this through community and grassroots organizing, holding corporations and governments accountable and working to conserve millions of acres of Southern forests. Forests are life-sustaining. Forests provide us with the very air we breathe, clean our drinking water supply and are home to millions of plant and animal species. They protect us from flooding. Forests are one of the greatest forces for helping us survive the worst effects of climate change. They are our connection to nature and can help us cope with stress, fatigue and anxiety.

Take Action, Learn More :

Poster and Key Art by A Great Idea