October 18th, 2013 | FUREVER | Germantown, MD
My BlackRock adventures began with a 4am drive to Norfolk, a flight to D.C., and a drive to Germantown, MD. Sadly, Kitt, my lovable GPS (he speaks to me as Kitt from Knight Rider), appeared to be equally exhausted and steered me off course. Fortunately, I’ve always wanted to see the Georgetown campus (twice in 20 minutes).
I battled my way out and was relieved to hear that one of my best friends, Jason, was driving from Baltimore to see FUREVER that evening. We met early in the day to explore Gaithersburg together. It’s a tiny little town on a lake that, after doing some research, I discovered was ranked #23 on Money Magazine’s top 100 places to live in the U.S. list. With the exception of that night’s extremely odd hotel experience (I’m fairly certain that the man across the hallway had to get the heimlich from the prostitute he’d procured that night…he survived), I might have to agree.
We made our way to BlackRock Center for the Arts in Germantown. I was greeted by the lovely Krista Bradley, Executive Director and Marc Wright, Technical Director. I was thrilled to meet my fellow panelists too. What an incredible lineup! Three really great veterinarians (Dr. Peter Eeg, Dr. Dale Rubenstein, moderator Dr. Chet Andersen) and one grief counselor (Dr. Toni Cortellessa). I also got to see my awesome friend Emily, whose family lives in Germantown (later that evening she drove us past one of her favorite hometown claims to fame: a car dealership that was featured in the movie Borat).
We had a packed house! It was a smallish theater with a wonderful audience. And it was great to see a few familiar faces for the first time on the O.S.I.P. tour!
This may have been the first Q&A where every audience member stayed (many participated in the discussion). We talked a lot about the ethical side of veterinary medicine, euthanasia, and the human/pet death care industries and products, as well as the actual technology used to shoot the film, and the logistical side of filmmaking. A fantastic Q&A — what passionate and lovely audience members!
I got to the airport around 9am the next morning and was greeted by two fascinating displays (a pitch perfect farewell gift from Washington, D.C.). First:
And second: As I awaited my boarding information someone on the loudspeaker said, “if you’re near gate 40, please come over and help us applaud the flight that just landed! Its passengers were in the first group of military servicemen deployed in WWII. I ran over with my camera and sure enough, a large group of little old men in wheelchairs dressed in “first in flight” regalia were being welcomed by a crowd of military personnel, other war veterans and saluting civilians. It was a surprisingly emotional reception.
Thank you to Jason, Emily (and the entire Lawrence family), my fellow panelists, and everyone at BlackRock for a wonderful trip!
Post by OSIP Touring Filmmaker, Amy Finkel