The Real Bedford Falls Documentary Released

I just want to share the news that our independent documentary The Real Bedford Falls: It’s a Wonderful Life is now available on DVD and digital HD. The film was produced by Honest Engine Films and distributed by Virgil Films and Entertainment. It recently won a New York Emmy Award in the category of Nostalgia-Long Form Content. 

Here is the synopsis:

Was one of the world’s most beloved motion pictures influenced by a small upstate New York town? The Real Bedford Falls: It’s a Wonderful Life is an Emmy Award-winning, half-hour documentary that explores the connections between Seneca Falls, New York, and Bedford Falls, the setting of the movie It’s a Wonderful Life.

Aerial image by Chase Guttman.

The documentary examines small-town life in Seneca Falls, captures the excitement of the annual It’s a Wonderful Life Festival, and celebrates the enduring themes of the Frank Capra classic. The film features interviews with Karolyn Grimes (who played Zuzu Bailey in It’s a Wonderful Life), Jimmy Hawkins (who played Tommy Bailey), Monica Capra Hodges, granddaughter of Frank Capra, and film critic Leonard Maltin. Former NBC Today show correspondent Bob Dotson provides the narration.

The release of the documentary comes at the right time, as this year marks the 75th anniversary of the release of It’s a Wonderful Life.

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The Real Bedford Falls Documentary on WNET

For people living in the NYC/Tri-State area, I want to pass along this note. The indie documentary short I co-produced/directed with my partner Stu Lisson—The Real Bedford Falls: It’s a Wonderful Life—airs tonight at 10:30 p.m. and again on Christmas Day on Thirteen WNET, the PBS station in New York.

Bridge Street Bridge in Seneca Falls. Aerial image by Chase Guttman.

The film explores the connections between the town of Seneca Falls, New York, and Bedford Falls, the fictional home of George Bailey in the classic movie It’s a Wonderful Life. The documentary features interviews with film critic Leonard Maltin, Karolyn Grimes (Zuzu Bailey), Jimmy Hawkins (Tommy Bailey), Syracuse University professor of popular culture Robert Thompson, film historian Jeanine Basinger and Monica Capra Hodges, granddaughter of director Frank Capra. Former NBC Today show correspondent Bob Dotson lends his mellifluous voice as narrator.

Thanks to everyone who was involved in this indie passion project. Special thanks go to The Seneca Falls It’s a Wonderful Life Museum for access to the story and most of all to Joanne Storkan, Chris Carpenter and the team at Honest Engine Films for making the project a reality. We hope to have a streaming/online viewing option in the near future.

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