Filmmaker Tom Chamberlin, Portland Oregon
My first effort at making ‘movies’ was in the fall of 1965. I was given 1700 feet of B&W 16mm film, a tape recorder, a beat up Bell and Howell movie camera and an airplane ticket to the Dominican Republic. My sponsor was Dr. Irving Pflaum, professor of Latin American studies at Inter American University in Puerto Rico. My job, to report on the shocking invasion of the D.R. by 16,000 American troops. The movie, long since lost, was less than remarkable. But I was hooked on filmmaking and radicalized by the experience.
With only short intervals as a house painter or other to get a little money between movies I have spent a life as a ‘Filmmaker.’ It has been a license, an excuse, a cover to look at groups and individuals committed to making the world a better place for all. Through the lens of a movie camera I have been given the gift of empathy, for a moment I have traveled in the shoes of other human beings.