Films Media Group out of New York City has picked up Conceiving Family to distribute to the educational market. I am very excited that we’ve found the right home for the film – for the next 7 years. Films Media Group works with schools K-12, colleges and universities, and educational groups of all kinds. It’s been fun self-distributing for this past stretch, as I have learned how to sell my film to the right markets and been able to connect directly with buyers and hear the impact the film is having in households and classrooms. Individuals can still get personal copies off the website here, but the educational market will all go through FMG. To all of you who have supported this film along the way, our little baby that we’ve all raised together is ready to go out into the big world on it’s own. Thank you for contributing to the film’s success in your own ways.
Get ready for this summer by signing up for the Film Camp for youth ages 8-18. Our one-week Director’s Seat program for 8-12 year olds runs July 22-26th and fills up fast. The two-week session for high school students ages 13-18 runs July 8-19th and is an in-depth program for those ready to plan, produce and edit their own short project. High school credits are earned by students entering grades 10, 11 and 12. More information about the camp and each program can be found at Film Camps on the website. To register, call Kootenay School of the Arts at Selkirk College at 250 352-2821 or drop by the campus at 606 Victoria Street during office hours. We’re looking forward to our 7th year of making films with the youth of the Kootenays and beyond!
KAST works to foster a culture that values science, technology, innovation and entrepreneurship as activities vital to maintaining and enhancing the competitiveness of the region. This past fall, Watershed Productions travelled around the Kootenays to Trail, Rossland, Castlegar and Crawford Bay, to deliver filmmaking workshops in partnership with KAST. Dozens of youth across our region learned how to plan, shoot and edit their own short videos. The creativity of our local youth is inspiring and many youth were excited to have the chance to do something that is not always offered in their school. For more information on KAST and their array of initiatives, visit their website at http://www.kast.com
Watershed Productions completed a video for this amazing community resource, telling the story of the Osprey Community Foundation through the donors, the board, the grant recipients and other community members who have been involved in making the Osprey Community Foundation so integral to Nelson.
For more information about the Osprey Community Foundation and how you can get involved or make an investment in your local community, visit their website here: Osprey Community Foundation
Watershed Productions is working with the Columbia Basin Trust to tell the stories of dozens of Basin residents who have experienced the transformation of the valleys since the 1964 Columbia River Treaty. Both Amy Bohigian and Rachel Schmidt have travelled across the Basin to multiple locations including Valemount, Nakusp, and Castlegar to record these important first-person accounts and ensure that this historical information is archived. The final videos will be produced on the CBT website early in 2013.
Rural Transcapes is a topical film that profiles four transgendered individuals who have chosen to live in the rural area of the Kootenays. Christopher Moore is one of the people featured in the film and is the founder of the TransConnect Program, which provides outreach services to transgendered folks around the East and West Kootenays.
Amy Bohigian of Watershed Productions was asked by Christopher last year to create an educational tool and the result is this 30 minute film, which delves into the difficult and inspiring stories of courage and authenticity. The film also features Dr. Chris Cochrane and Dr. Esta Porter, two medical professionals based in Nelson who work directly with the transgendered community. At a time when Chaz Bono has made transgendered a household word, let this film create a deeper appreciation of what it truly means for the folks featured in the film.
This film is set for release and will be used as an educational tool across Canada and the US. To learn more about the film and obtain a copy of the DVD for your school, organization or for home use, please contact 250 354-5362.
Amy Bohigian was interviewed about her latest film, Conceiving Family, on CBC’s North by Northwest on June 11th. If you missed it, listen to her conversation with Paolo Pietropaolo. Activate the blog post and then click here for the podcast.
Once a thriving mining community, present day Cold Rock is a ghost town clouded by an unthinkable tragedy haunting those who remain. Children are disappearing without a trace. Superstitious locals speak in hushed tones of the tall man, a dark and mysterious figure who may indeed be responsible for the abductions or simply the invention of the imaginative minds of the frightened townsfolk.
Julia Denning (Jessica Biel), the local nurse and a rational voice of reason doesn’t believe the urban legend. Until the night David disappears.
Driven by unwavering maternal instinct, Julia pursues the dark figure who abducted her son through the rugged mountain terrain. The chase begins and with it the quest for answers. Who is the tall man? And where are the missing children?
The action/thriller is the feature length English-language debut from writer/director Pascal Laugier whose French horror film Martyrs opened to critical acclaim at the 2008 Cannes Film Festival and screened to enthusiastic audiences at the Toronto International Film Festival later that year.
Conceiving Family follows (Director/Producer) Amy Bohigian and her partner, Jane Byers, as they adopt biracial 15 month-old twins, Franny and Theo. Their journey to becoming a family, like the other four same-sex couples, is laden with challenges, including confronting the Christian Fundamentalist foster parents who express fear that the children they’ve cared for since birth will now, “grow up to be gay” with parents who are “going to hell for their sins.” Required to live together for two weeks during the kids’ transition they confront their differences in the most surprising ways. Combining personal interviews, intimate footage, and family photos, Conceiving Family tells the collective story of what it takes to become an intentional family.
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CBC Radio One – interview with Paolo Peitropaolo
Curve Magazine – film review coming in June 2012
Washington DC’s Blade article
New England’s Bay Windows article
Vancouver Observer article
Nelson Star article
Art in the Kootenays article
Xtra! Magazine article
Instinct Magazine article
G Philly article
Women’s Forum website
The Nelson Daily article
Proud Parenting article
Curve Magazine – September 2012
Blog “See Theo Run” – January 2013
Festivals and Screenings
June 23, 2012 – Toronto BC, Female Eye Film Festival 4-6PM at the Carlton Cinema
April, 2012 – Kamloops BC, MCFD hosting
March 12, 2012 – Victoria BC through Movie Monday Film Society
March 11, 2012 – Vancouver BC, Women in Film Festival at the Vancity Theatre
February, 2012 – Victoria BC, Victoria Film Festival
January, 2012 – Nelson BC, encore screening at SelfDesgn High
November 2011 – Castlegar BC, at Selkirk College
November 2011 – Kelowna BC, MCFD hosted at Okanagon College
September 2011 – Nelson BC, hometown premiere at the Capitol Theatre
June, 2011 – Vancouver BC, AFABC hosted at The Cultch’s Historic Theater
*To host a screening, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
These are resources that are invaluable to any LGBT prospective family, family or friend of the family. AFABC has a comprehensive list of books, links to social groups and further resources on their website here: RESOURCE LIST AND LINKS
Intention of Film
I conceived of this film back in 2008 when my partner and I made our decision to start a family during a backpacking trip in the Rockies. We, like so many around us, wanted to have children and chose government adoption to begin this process.
We learned that there are thousands of children, from newborns to teens, in need of a permanent family, yet despite this, barriers still exist for gays and lesbians to adopt. At the same time, the number of gay and lesbian households choosing to have a family is rising exponentially. Now is the time to bridge the gap and open the doors for those children that need a loving home.
I was awarded a major project grant from the Victoria Foundation’s Lex Reynolds Adoption and Permanency Fund, a fund established to support the creation of more life-long families through adoption. I partnered with Adoptive Families Association of BC, an leading organization for prospective adoptive families and adoptive families. It was my intention when I made this film that it would inspire new families by telling the essential and emerging stories of gay and lesbian adoptions.
I have come to understand what my film mentor once advised. Rather than set out to change the world through our films, let ourselves be changed by the films we can’t help but make.
Conceiving Family takes us inside the lives of five gay and lesbian couples who show the bravery, determination, and humor it takes to rise above the legal systems, societal prejudices, and personal fears inherent in starting a family through adoption.
Conceiving Family director/producer Amy Bohigian and her partner Jane Byers are an American/Canadian couple that adopt biracial 15 month-old twins, Franny and Theo. Their journey to becoming a family is laden with challenges, including confronting the Christian Fundamentalist foster parents who express fear that the children they’ve cared for since birth will now, “grow up to be gay” with parents who are “going to hell for their sins.” Required to live together for two weeks during the kids’ transition they confront their differences in the most surprising ways.
Long-term partners Jan and Lindsey found their twin baby girls at a Romanian orphanage, only to have one come close to dying shortly after arriving at her new home. Twenty years later, having fought in the courts to both be legitimized as legal parents, they find themselves as foster parents to a baby boy with whom they become so connected they chose to adopt him and his older sister to keep them together. This initiates a whole new round of parenting as they enter their sixties.
Daryl and Ian decorated the nursery and bought a minivan in preparation for their new baby’s arrival only to have the birth family reverse their decision because they had second thoughts about a same-sex couple. When their social worker calls again, they find themselves holding their breath and then, their four hour-old baby boy, Oliver, at the hospital nursery one week later.
Colleen and Tammy are seasoned foster parents, so when Kelly came to them as a sick baby they knew it would be heart wrenching to let her go. Despite their immediate connection to Kelly, they return to her native community to reunite her with her birth family. Here, Kelly’s birth mother laments her past mistakes having caused the baby harm during pregnancy and makes the difficult choice to support Colleen and Tammy as Kelly’s new adoptive parents.
Like most gay men looking to start a family, Jim and Ted researched surrogacy, but were daunted by the cost. When they saw the video of five year-old Damien at an adoption event, they became convinced they were going to be his parents. Jim must then confront his self-image as a ‘good Catholic boy’ and show his devoutly religious mom that his new family is as normal as it gets.
Combining personal interviews, home video archives, and on location footage, Conceiving Family tells the essential and intimate collective story of what it sometimes takes to become a family.
Conceiving Family Press Kit
Press Kit – Conceiving Family[8.2 MB ZIP file]