The idea of making a film first occurred to Audrey Ewell on the 1st October when, from her window, she saw a wave of demonstrators walking towards Lower Manhattan.
What eventually became known as the Occupy Wall Street Movement started off as a large crowd of protestors pointing out economic inequality and the excesses of the finance sector. The movement soon spread to some 45 States and around the world.
For all the protest’s initial noise and commotion, the press barely covered the event – treating it as a minor issue. As Ewell said a few days later, “What appeared on television simply didn’t reflect any of what I had witnessed”
This media “blackout” as some call it, was what pushed her to give a blow-by-blow account of the movement.
Her idea was to make a documentary interviewing people who would confirm what had actually happened from independent and unbiased points of view. In order to make the documentary, Ewell enlisted the help of various film makers including Aaron Aites. The project would be called “We are the 99%” in reference to the movement’s motto. 99% of demonstrators refuse to continue tolerating the greed and the corruption of the 1% who control most of the country’s wealth.
“We are Legion for we are many”, seems to be the slogan. The project was financed using Kickstarter, a crowdsourcing platform which allows its projects’ creators to maintain full control of their ideas.
The film “We are the 99%” has been financed by more than $20,000 of donations. Although the movement is still taking place at Street level, though less vigorously, it is clear that it will affect the forthcoming US electoral campaigns. It remains to be seen whether or not the movement will help or hinder Barak Obama’s prospects.
“The movement will definitely have some kind of effect on the campaign, but I wouldn’t know in what direction exactly, what is clear is that it will drive many voters to the ballot box” Ewell stated.
Audrey suggested that one of the film’s main aims is to show citizens how society really works – including the parts which are normally well concealed. She declares that as independent film makers, “our goal is just to show people what’s going on all around us.”