Prisoners and Patriots film tells the untold story of a Japanese internment camp

A journalist friend of mine is raising money so he can distribute his documentary film about a previously untold story: the internment of more than 4,500 Japanese men, including United States citizens, in Santa Fe during World War II.

The documentary draws from “20 hours of exclusive interviews with former Santa Fe survivors and their families, declassified government documents and private photographs,” and “tells a story that, in many cases, fathers never told their own children after the war,” according to its director, Neil Simon, who notes as part of his request for help to fund it that “No film, book, or museum collection exists to tell the full story of what happened there, who the men were, their lives before the war, and where they went after.”

Neil is raising money via Kickstarter to distribute the film. Donors can give $1 or more; pledging $25 or more gets them the DVD first, while $50 gets their name in the credits. (If you’ve never heard of Kickstarter, it’s a pretty awesome way for creative people to fund specific projects; if a goal isn’t reached, no one pays, and donations result in tangible benefits for those who give. Other documentary filmmakers are also seeking funding.)

You can watch an excerpt from the film, and there’s a director’s statement from Neil on Kickstarter; here’s its trailer:

The Sing-Off loses its star

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NBC's super-fun December a capella singing competition The Sing-Off is returning, but without its star judge, Ben Folds, and only as a two-hour special. Those are really depressing changes for a series that proved itself to be a super-fun show when it returned last December.


A film director talks about becoming a reality TV character

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What is it like to have your life turned into reality TV? Director Anna Martemucci, one of the two directors featured on Starz' exceptional reality series, talks about that, the competition, and her collaboration with her husband and brother-in-law.

Plus: How the show's producers tried to keep the $250,000 competition fair.

about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 36, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.