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What does it mean to be a citizen in the 21st Century? This is an important thematic question at the center of We Want the Airwaves.
Before we shot the first frames behind the scenes of the docuseries Manifesto! something was abundantly clear to us. A subject that no one was talking about: as much entertainment that was present on our airwaves, very little of it told the stories of everyday people.
Because of this our feature documentary We Want the Airwaves is, at it’s core, an argument for our first amendment rights. An argument for a people’s platform.
Cut from countless hours of behind the scenes footage and interviews with TV & Cultural insiders and outsiders, We Want the Airwaves follows the creation of the grassroots television series Manifesto! and the unique, diverse human subjects who brought the show to life; all while exposing the harsh realities of the ethically challenged unscripted television world.
The film’s journey begins with a singular manifesto. A tale of a team with a clear goal of creating the next evolution in television: a docuseries which chronicles the work of activists and the disenfranchised, who actively create solutions for their communities.
The first modern television show of its kind.
We follow them on this chaotic journey, filming Manifesto!, surviving myriad conflicts, pitching the show and eventually changing television as we know it.
Scott Ryan (Director, Writer, Producer) began his filmmaking career directing documentaries for the startup company Zoom Culture. Many of these short films were produced for the national TV shows Playground Earth and Hip Hop Nation which ran on NBC and MTV networks. During his time at ‘ZC’ Scott found himself shooting stories on everything from professional street lugers to Los Angeles street art and multiple PSAs. Scott further honed his documentary skills shooting with the Gantz Brother’s production company View Film (of Taxicab Confessions fame). Recently, Scott founded Monkey Wrench Agency, a company focused on production of PSAs for underserved non-profits. A PSA he directed and produced for 5 Gyres Institute was featured in their international campaign to ban plastic microbead pollution in our waterways; this resulted in a statewide ban in California and contributed to a nationwide ban, signed by Barack Obama in 2015, known as “The Microbead Free Waters Act.” We Want the Airwaves is Scott’s feature documentary directorial debut.
Charmel Green (Producer) A native Californian, Charmel grew up just outside of Hollywood, building strong, respected relationships with many high profile industry veterans. The scope of her production work includes: feature length and short films, commercials, TV shows, documentaries, and live stage events. Charmel’s work includes supporting the directorial debuts of Bruce Block’s short film, Stuck, Eric McCormack’s Pirates, as well as Kevin Connolly’s Whatever We Do, produced by Tobey Maguire. Charmel co-created and produced the TV show Manifesto! and is in post production with the feature film Hash Browns.
Cory B. Clay (Co-Producer) As a Director of Photography he suspended on a stage from the 25th floor of a skyscraper for the Emmy Award winning American Tower. Cory also directed the photography for the PBS documentary Scott Air Force Base and found himself a passenger on flights to seven different cities, on an Aerovac mission with the USAF. He was on the crew of the Emmy winning No Greater Love which – for 30 hours straight followed a human organ procurement story to its end, transplant surgery. This documentary included full coverage in the operating room. Needless to say, Cory has true love and passion for documentaries. His camera work on documentaries for PBS, Discovery and NOVA have gathered multiple Emmy Awards.