Documentary First Podcast

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Episode 36: Drowning

Everything is possible, but what’s best? In this episode, our hosts discuss what it feels like to make a documentary film and the multitude of options and opinions out there about what should happen next. Film festivals? The Oscars? Distribution rights? In the midst of all of the screenings, it can be difficult to know what to do.

Want to help us make the film? We’re looking for volunteers and need donations. Please visit http://normandystories.com/donate and help us tell the veteran’s stories!

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Episode 35: Fundraising

Fundraising is tough. Even the best documentary filmmakers like Ken Burns still has trouble finding doners that make films possible. What works? Hosts Christian Taylor and Josh Lindsey share some of the things that have worked and how to brainstorm new ideas.

Want to help us make the film? We’re looking for volunteers and need donations. Please visit http://normandystories.com/donate and help us tell the veteran’s stories!

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Episode 34: Entrepreneurship

What does it take to be a voiceover actor? Or a film director? Or a book author? Hosts Christian Taylor and Josh Lindsey discuss entrepreneurship to highlight common skills needed for success in a multitude of careers.

Want to help us make the film? We’re looking for volunteers and need donations. Please visit http://normandystories.com/donate and help us tell the veteran’s stories!

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Episode 33: Book Publishing

Have you ever wanted to write a book? In May of 2019, Christian Taylor co-authored a book with Peggy Sue Wells to give people another avenue to learn about the stories of veterans and (hopefully) raise some money for the film by the same name, The Girl Who Wore Freedom. Get the book at https://amzn.to/2HtQ9iF.

Want to help us make the film? We’re looking for volunteers and need donations. Please visit http://normandystories.com/donate and help us tell the veteran’s stories!

Subscribe to the Documentary First podcast at your favorite podcast distribution network:
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Episode 32: Invest in People

In this episode, Director Christian Taylor shares her difficult technique for turning people into your biggest fans. Invest your time to listen to them! Hear how she came to that conclusion and all about her adventures with screenings in TN.

Want to help us make the film? We’re looking for volunteers and need donations. Please visit http://normandystories.com/donate and help us tell the veteran’s stories!

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Episode 31: Homecoming

Director Christian Taylor shares an emotional story of serendipity as she reunites two long lost brothers and brings together veterans, French families, and high schoolers for a memorable screening in Stoneybrook, NY.

Want to help us make the film? We’re looking for volunteers and need donations. Please donate and help us tell the veteran’s stories!

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Episode 30: How NOT to Make a Documentary

If you’re planning to make a documentary, be prepared for a lot of failure and unexpected setbacks. It takes someone like Thomas Edison (or Director Christian Taylor) to spin “1,000 mistakes” into “1,000 small steps to success”. Learn some of the mistakes The Girl Who Wore Freedom has already made and what hope to do about it.

Want to help us make the film? We’re looking for volunteers and need donations. Please visit http://normandystories.com/donate and help us tell the veteran’s stories!

Subscribe to the Documentary First podcast at your favorite podcast distribution network:
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Special Edition: Upcoming Screenings

In this special edition episode of Documentary First, we bring you important information about upcoming screenings for The Girl Who Wore Freedom. Listen in and see more at https://www.normandystories.com/screenings.

Want to help us make the film? We’re looking for volunteers and need donations. Please visit http://normandystories.com/donate and help us tell the veteran’s stories!

Subscribe to the Documentary First podcast at your favorite podcast distribution network:
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Episode 29: Killing Your Babies

How many times do you have to watch your dear film before you decide that it really will be okay to cut some things out? In the industry, this is referred to as “killing your babies”. In this episode, Christian Taylor, Director of The Girl Who Wore Freedom shares what it’s been like to respond to feedback and her own convictions about needing to shorten the film.

Want to help us make the film? We’re looking for volunteers and need donations. Please visit http://normandystories.com/donate and help us tell the veteran’s stories!

Subscribe to the Documentary First podcast at your favorite podcast distribution network:
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Episode 28: Rejection

What is something you shouldn’t do when running a screening? In this episode, Director Christian Taylor talks about what she’s learned from her recent experience attending four screenings for The Girl Who Wore Freedom in Colorado earlier this year.

One tip: don’t be afraid to ask for donations even if you’ll get rejected. Speaking of which, have you considered donating to support the film? Visit http://normandystories.com/donate and help us tell the veteran’s stories!

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Episode 27: Volunteers & Partners

Projects like The Girl Who Wore Freedom need volunteers to exist. Volunteers who are hungry for growth have many opportunities to gain real-world experience and do work they’d be proud to show others. It’s a win-win situation for both parties. When should someone start getting paid for the work that they do?

And how do you find social media influencers and partners to cross-promote your work? Find out how this plan began and how we were approached by the folks at Ike’s Soldiers (ikessoldiers.com).

Do you know someone with fundraising experience? The Girl Who Wore Freedom needs help and we’re willing to share a percentage of proceeds to get that work done. Contact us for more information: https://www.normandystories.com/contact.

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Episode 26: Miniseries

When the idea for The Girl Who Wore Freedom was conceived a lot had to happen in a short amount of time. Now that there is a documentary of the film out there, we take stock of what we have and consider the format. What if a documentary would really work better as a three-part miniseries? What steps are necessary to get listed on Netflix, Amazon Video, or even a cable network like The History Channel? Should a documentary even consider that?

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Episode 25: More Screenings

Christian has had a chance to catch her breath and is ramping up for screenings in Denver, Colorado Springs, New York, Branson, and beyond! Find a screening near you: https://normandystories.com/screenings.

These screenings are being organized and spearheaded by people who are passionate about sharing The Girl Who Wore Freedom in their city and helping us raise funds to finish the film. Want to organize a screening in your own? Let us know on our contact page: https://www.normandystories.com/contact.

If you’re looking to support us and get some cool clothing or souvenirs, check out the new Girl Who Wore Freedom shop: https://normandystories.com/shop.

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Episode 24: Fatigue

Creating a film is exhausting. Is it even possible to take a break when you’re in the midst of creating a feature-length documentary? And what do you do when you want to finish the film, but don’t have the money to pay the editor and other team members to get the work done? In this episode, Christian Taylor, director of The Girl Who Wore Freedom, shares the struggle through fatigue and satisfying rewards that shine through it.

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Episode 23: Getting Feedback

Getting any kind of feedback is hard. If the feedback is only positive, you worry that they’re just trying to make you feel good and not being authentic. But it’s also really difficult to receive negative feedback! In this episode, podcast host Josh Lindsey and director Christian Taylor talk about about how the Chicago focus group screening went and how real-world feedback has influenced the development of the film.

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Episode 22: Q&A with Christian

In this episode, host of the podcast Josh Lindsey asks director Christian Taylor a series of questions to better understand what went on at the Normandy premiere of The Girl Who Wore Freedom. We’ll hear about things she would have done differently and hear about some emotional and impactful moments.

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Episode 21: Social Media

Social media is an important part of promoting any project, but particularly films. In this episode, we meet Anne Evans, our first social media lead and sister of Director Christian Taylor. Anne shares how she got started in this role and dissect her plan for raising money for The Girl Who Wore Freedom.

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Episode 20: Screening

What does it take to run a focus group screening? In this episode, Director Christian Taylor shares how the eleven screenings were planned for Normandy to gather feedback from the five-hundred people who have seen the film.

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Episode 19: Eleventh Hour

Director Christian Taylor is in France preparing to screen the film, but the drive doesn’t work. In this episode, we celebrate the first screening of The Girl Who Wore Freedom in Normandy, France, discuss the struggle to make it a reality, and share first impressions.

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Episode 18: Mississippi Screening

In this episode, Director Christian Taylor shares an update after visiting Mississippi and screening for veterans with dramatically moving results. Because we’ve been so busy with that, we’re also reairing Episode 2 of the Documentary First podcast in lieu of a new episode. Check out normandystories.com for the latest information about our film.

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Episode 17: Post-Screening

In this episode, Director Christian Taylor shares an update after screening The Girl Who Wore Freedom in Normandy for D-Day Celebrations. Because we’ve been so busy with that, we’re also reairing Episode 1 of the Documentary First podcast in lieu of a new episode. Check out normandystories.com for the latest information about our film.

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Episode 16: Next

Director Christian Taylor looks ahead to the next steps for “The Girl Who Wore Freedom” and speculates about what it will be like to watch the film with the first screening audiences.

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Episode 15: Bilingual

Working with footage and audiences that represent at least two distinct languages is no small task. Director Christian Taylor talks about the complexity of subtitling and her project’s tight turnaround for sound and score.

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Episode 14: Composer

A good composer understands both emotion and serendipity. There’s no better example than how Jeff Kurtenacker came to be the Lead Composer on The Girl Who Wore Freedom. Listen in as Director Christian Taylor shares his story and how she learned to communicate with emotion.

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Episode 13: Tools

When you’re a bootstrapped documentary you sometimes have to pick free or inexpensive tools to get the job done. For The Girl Who Wore Freedom Director Christian Taylor talks about the pain of editing (“killing your babies” to get the timing and tone right) and shares some of her favorite tools that she’s come to love (including Google Drive, Trello, Frame.io, and Zoom).

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Episode 12: Editor

A good editor is hard to come by and The Girl Who Wore Freedom was blessed with one of the best: Bill Ebel. Learn more as Director Christian Taylor shares her appreciation for Bill and the qualities (and hard, honest truth) that make him the perfect editor for our documentary.

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Episode 11: Garage

All great things begin in a garage. Josh, Jason, and Director Christian Taylor explore the ins and outs of film editing from a garage in Tennessee. Christian also shares the roller-coaster that is translating, subtitling, and script-writing.

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Episode 10: Balance

Is there such thing as work/life balance in film-making? Director Christian Taylor discusses La La Land, the creative process, striking the right tone, and putting family first…always.

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Episode 9: Dark Night of the Soul

What do you do when you’re at your all time low and ready to call it quits? In this episode, producer Christian Taylor tells the story of her (extended) visit to her editor in Tennessee to get the film done, how she ran out of money, and how donors came through on the day they were going to end the project.

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Episode 8: Rewrite

In this episode, producer Christian Taylor shares the results of her first preview of the film; and it’s not good. She faces reality of deadlines, debt, and the editorial process as she considers the end of the project.

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Episode 7: Assembly

A lot has developed since the last episode and the film is currently undergoing the assembly edit. In this episode you’ll what that means and why everything Christian Taylor has told you up to this point is wrong.

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Episode 6: Harry Kropnicki

The wonderful story about Harry Kropnicki, Daniel Banazio and Flo Plana.

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Episode 5: Cuts

Wading through 600+ hours of footage, cutting off appendages, and finding your story—we’re looking at the realities of first-time filmmaking.

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Episode 4: Helmets

Real questions from real listeners posed to a real first-time filmmaker. Christian, Josh, and Jason explore the many uses of helmets, the smells of war, and the healing power of beer.

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Episode 3: Grit

Documentary filmmaking takes way more than setting up a camera in a breathlessly scenic, historic destination. It starts with determination. Christian, Josh, and Jason cover the grit of getting started in filmmaking and how to craft a pitch packet.

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Episode 2: Favorites

Christian, Josh, and Jason explore their all-time favorite documentaries and the inspirations for “The Girl Who Wore Freedom” film.

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Episode 1: Origins

Today we talk origin stories. We’re looking at how Director Christian Taylor got her start in filmmaking, the necessity of building a good team and how being a Mom helped her as a producer! Christian, Josh, and Jason discuss voiceover, working with a virtual team and the importance in belief.

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