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Posted: Thu 11/29/2012 03:25 PM
Becoming Chaz is the heartfelt and honest portrayal of Chaz Bono, the only child of Sonny & Cher during his emotional and physical transition from woman to man. This inspirational film follows Chaz, and the people he loves, on a deeply personal journey.
Posted: Fri 11/16/2012 05:23 PM
The OWN Documentary Club is 14 films with a unique perspective on topics as varied as slam poetry, being transgender, the prison system, animal rights, and the portrayal of women in the media. Each film is created to inspire deeper understanding and compassion for one another and the human condition. The OWN Documentary Club's thought-provoking documentaries are now available to buy or rent. Click TRAILERS to watch clips from the films and BUY for purchase information.
Posted: Tue 05/01/2012 08:53 AM
Tell us about Eva and what it was like to make this documentary with her?
Our friend Eva was tall with striking features and you always knew if she was feeling good, because she would stop everything to dye her hair bright red.
She loved taking photos and was interested in people and their experiences. In her art she focused on capturing the personal heartaches as well as simple, unexpected joys of life. The photos that she took of herself showed the light and dark side of living with Cystic Fibrosis (CF), which she faithfully posted on her blog in an attempt to reach out and connect with the unseen world around her.
Eva was many things in her short life, but perhaps most importantly she was born in the age of the internet which enabled her to blog from wherever she was. Her online journal allowed her to share her voice and speak her mind without censorship. In reality she was a celebrated writer without ever
publishing a book. She was a performer without ever acting in a film. She was an artist without fully realizing the extent of the mark she was leaving behind.
Eva judged a successful day by how much love she was able to give back. It was always about what she could do, never about how much she couldn’t. While Eva lived with CF, she didn’t fight against it. She understood that this genetic disease was a part of who she was, and just like the color of her eyes CF was embraced as a part of her identity. But it didn’t define her, Eva made sure of that.
So even though she was really sick, she concealed the true extent of her suffering from those around her because she never wanted to be perceived as a sick girl first. She wanted to be Eva. Her online journal, and later our film, became an outlet to unleash both sides of herself.
CF effects the lungs and the result is that patients usually don’t reach their 40s. Knowing her life would be cut short Eva decided to live in the moment. She embraced transplant because it was her best shot for a longer life and she was willing to risk everything to undergo a very painful and dangerous surgery, because she wanted to experience something that we all take for granted. The most basic human experience that she was never able to do. She wanted to take a full, deep breath.
Receiving new lungs wasn’t ever going to cure Eva of CF, but it could give her a second chance at life. The difference between Eva before and after transplant shocked all of us who knew her. For the first time as an adult she could run, she could sing, she could dance. As she said herself, she had her “life back.” She never put things off for later, because in the back of her mind she knew she was living on borrowed time.
While we directed 65_RedRoses, Eva was always the director of her life. This film is the result of countless hours of tiring work on her part to make sure that the film was the best that it could be, that it told the truth, and that it reflected who Eva really was.
It’s real, it’s full of love, and it’s her story. Seen through our camera’s lens this is Eva’s journey to create awareness for organ donation and Cystic Fibrosis.
What would you say to the OWN viewers who are about to tune in for the premiere – why should they watch it, what should they expect? What makes it special?
65_RedRoses is a story of hope that has impacted audiences around the world and we know that this film will inspire OWN viewers to take action in their own lives. Our main subject Eva Markvoort is such a beautiful and strong role model for other young women out there who are facing adversity. Eva forges through life with such conviction and love that it’s hard to believe she’s battling a fatal illness. Our film captures Eva’s journey to getting a double lung transplant, and her experience will open people’s eyes to the miracle of transplant and what it means to provide a ‘second chance’ at life to someone who is waiting for a donor. We explore the importance of online connections and how the internet can be an incredible tool for empowering young people and bringing them together. With the popularity of facebook and twitter, people are connecting online more than ever and this film highlights the importance of this technology in Eva’s life as she connects to other people who have Cystic Fibrosis.
What should people know about CF and organ donation and where can they find out more information?
It’s important for people to understand that Cystic Fibrosis is a ‘young persons’ disease so unfortunately there are a lot of young people out there who are in need of a lung transplant and currently waiting on the list. If you aren’t already an organ donor, please visit the website www.65redroses.com to find out how you can register online! It takes less than one minute and we also have a free 65_RedRoses App available so that you can share with your friends how easy it is to become a donor! It’s one of the most beautiful and most selfless gifts you can give, and why wouldn’t you want to save someone like Eva? Tell everyone you know to tune in to the US premiere of the documentary on OWN!
For information on the 65_RedRoses Campaign, visit the website!
Read the NY Times film review, Blogging a Path Through Illness
And, check out the 65_RedRoses homepage