Monday, April 16, 2012

Eagan-Donovan hopes to wind up long-term, film project this year

Cheryl Eagan-Donovan at Shakespeare Authorship Studies conference April 12, 2012

Director Cheryl Eagan-Donovan reports on her film, Nothing Is Truer Than Truth:
I wanted to let your group know about my new Kickstarter campaign to raise [$25,000] finishing funds for my film Nothing Is Truer Than Truth. I screened an excerpt from the film at the Concordia [Shakespeare Authorship Studies] Conference [on April 13, 2012]. . . . The total budget for the film is less than one million dollars, and we are working toward festival a debut in 2012. . . . Funding received to date has been generously provided by individual donors and by a grant from Shakespeare Fellowship Foundation. For more information about the film, go to: or
From Eagan-Donovan's press release on the new fundraising campaign:

Director Cheryl Eagan-Donovan has launched a new Kickstarter campaign to raise finishing funds for her feature length documentary, Nothing is Truer than Truth. Speaking at the 16th Annual Shakespeare Authorship Studies Conference at Concordia University, she also announced the formation of an advisory committee to assist in developing outreach, marketing and distribution strategy for the project. The film is currently in post-production and scheduled for release later this year. Nothing is Truer than Truth is not about the authorship question; it’s about the authorship answer, Edward de Vere.
The total budget for finishing funds campaign is $25,000, which includes online editing, music, audio mix, rights clearances, graphics, color correction, and festival fees. The goal with this campaign is to expand the supporter base and reach new audiences for the film. Kickstarter is an all-or-nothing approach to fundraising, so the entire amount must be raised by the April 30th deadline. Members of the advisory committee, comprised of prominent Shakespeare scholars and film industry professionals, include Mark Anderson, Roger Stritmatter, Earl Showerman, Richard Whalen, Richard Waugaman, Bonner Cutting. Carole Sue Lipman, Ben August, Sara Rubin, John Lindsay, and Lyda Kuth.
 Nothing is Truer than Truth focuses on the fourteen-month period when Edward de Vere escaped the confines of life at Elizabeth’s Court and traveled the Continent from his home base in Venice, gathering the material for the great canon that would become known as the works of Shakespeare. Six years in the making, the film provides a behind-the-scenes look at the cities and landmarks referenced in the Shakespeare plays and visited by Edward de Vere, Seventeenth Earl of Oxford, during his continental tour in 1575-76. 
 Deborah Cesana, location assistant for the films The Tourist and Merchant of Venice, served as Production Coordinator for the seven-day shoot, and Emmy Award winner Paul Sharpe served as Cinematographer. On screen, Alberto Toso Fei, Italian television personality and co-author of Shakespeare in Venice, shares his extensive knowledge of his native city and its history. Toso Fei has written several books on Venice and a new book on Rome. Locations in Venice included the Palazzo Ducale, the Church of Santa Maria Formosa, the Church of the Greeks, La Frezzeria, the Rialto Marketplace, Titian’s studio, and the Jewish Ghetto. The crew traveled to Brenta to visit La Malcontenta, Villa Foscari, the inspiration for Portia’s Belmont in Merchant of Venice, and then on to Padua, Mantua and Verona, where they enjoyed exclusive access to many historical sites that remain virtually unchanged from the time that de Vere encountered them.
 The film features interviews with world renowned Shakespeare actor and scholar Sir Derek Jacobi, Tony award winner and former Globe Theater Director Mark Rylance, Paul Nicholson, Director of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Richard Paul Roe, author of The Shakespeare Guide to Italy, Michael Cecil, 18th Baron Burghley and descendant of William Cecil, Lord Burghley, and Tina Packer, Founder and Artistic Director of Shakespeare & Company. Last year the crew filmed interviews with scholar Roger Stritmatter, on his seminal research on the Geneva Bible owned by Edward de Vere, and psychiatrist Richard Waugaman, whose article on the Shakespeare allusions found in the Whole Book of the Psalms is currently ranked 4th among the most read list in the journal Notes & Queries.  Most recently, director Eagan-Donovan and co-producer Steve Maing filmed an interview with the acclaimed and controversial Artistic Director of The American Repertory Theater, Diane Paulus, whose “Shakespeare Exploded” series includes the innovative disco interpretation of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, The Donkey Show, and the Punchdrunk co-production of Sleep No More.
 Meredith Crowley has joined the Controversy Films team as co-producer. Crowley’s credits include 40 Million Strong, a documentary about children affected by HIV/AIDS in Durban, South Africa, and a documentary for the non-profit organization “Tremendous Hearts,” about housing for children affected by AIDS in Capetown, South Africa. Meredith has edited programs including Lessons From Little Rock: a National Report Card; Knock First, a reality series on ABC Family; and Au Revoir Expos, a documentary about the Expos baseball team. Her most recent locations department credits include the television programs Rescue Me (FX), Person of Interest (CBS), and Ringer (CW); and feature films Arthur (Warner Bros), Friends With Kids, and Rabbit Hole. Co-producer Maing’s new film High Tech Low Life about citizen cell phone journalists in China, will screen at the Tribeca Film Festival this month and at Hot Docs in Toronto in May. Director Eagan-Donovan studied Shakespeare and wrote poetry as a literature major at Goddard College, has a BS in Finance & Business Administration from Boston University, and an MFA in Creative Writing from Lesley University. Her debut documentary, All Kindsa Girls, screened at art house theaters and film festivals in London, Toronto, and throughout the US, is featured in Paul Sherman’s book Big Screen Boston, and was short-listed for the PBS series POV. The film’s theatrical screenings included the Alamo Drafthouse in Austin, the Gene Siskel Film Center in Chicago, and the Coolidge Corner Theatre in Boston.
 She served as President of Women in Film & Video/New England for several years, and is the 2012 Judge for the Annual Screenwriting Competition. She currently serves on the Board of Directors of The Next Door Theater in Winchester, Massachusetts. Her credits as publicist include the award-winning features All the Rage (Roland Tec 1996) and Could Be Worse! (Zack Stratis 2000).  In addition to poetry, she has written narrative screenplays, stage plays, and short stories, and published articles about Shakespeare, screenwriting, and film. She currently teaches screenwriting at Boston University’s Center for Digital Imaging Arts, and Northeastern University. Cheryl has been a lecturer at several Shakespeare Fellowship & Shakespeare Oxford Society Joint Authorship conferences. Her new ten-minute play, Veritas, a send-up of Shakespeare academia, had its first staged reading at Lesley University in Cambridge, Massachusetts, in January, 2012.