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TV Preview: Beyond the Call on PBS

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In the spring of 2004 as he drove across the Bay Bridge, Adrian Belic was describing being in Afghanistan as the US bombing began. He was shooting a documentary on Knightsbridge International, a small relief organization which delivered humanitarian aid to places most other groups wouldn't go. He had given Weather Underground co-director Sam Green and I a ride home. Adrian had been nominated along with his brother for an Oscar for best documentary for Genghis Blues.

I bumped into him a year later at Input, an international public television conference. He had started to edit the documentary. And a year after that, I saw Beyond the Call at the San Francisco International Film Festival. Enric shot a video at the opening night party which includes a few questions I asked.

Adrian Belic At the screening, he displayed action figures of the people in the his film. They weren't able to make it, but he did talk to Walt (who was somewhere on the other side of the world – I forget where) on a cell phone (more photos). It was one of the best documentaries I saw last year (and one of the most entertaining films).

And now, not quite a year later, an hour-long version of Beyond the Call is airing on PBS stations as part of Independent Lens. It starts airing on PBS stations on Tuesday, January 23 (but check local listings – many show it another day or repeat it).

The full version will be available on DVD (it also was on Ironweed's December DVD – they have an interview with Adrian.  And Black Gold, which is on their January DVD, will be on Independent Lens on April 10).


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