Janitor's tale gains Hollywood notice
July 8, 2010
STANFORD, CA — While Stanford University is recognized as home to some of the brightest minds in the world, some of the school''s most inspiring intellectual gems can often remain tragically unseen: In some cases, they might even be hidden just behind a paper towel and a half-filled bottle of multi-purpose cleaner, according to The Stanford Daily.
Doroteo Garcia is a janitor at the Cantor Arts Center at Stanford: To first-year Master of Fine Arts (M.F.A.) students Kevin Gordon and Rebekah Meredith, however, Garcia is far more than his occupation; he is a poet, a historian, an activist and the focus of the critically acclaimed documentary, "Dreams Awake," which earned Gordon and Meredith a bronze medal in the 2010 Student Academy Awards last month, the article stated.
The project first emerged out of FilmProd 402, a winter quarter course for M.F.A. documentary students where those enrolled pair up to produce films, the article noted.
According to the article, the filmmakers spent the next few weeks storyboarding their idea before recording the seven-minute documentary in four shoots lasting a few hours each.
"Dreams Awaken" ultimately paints a reflective, emotional portrait of Garcia by focusing on controlled, stylized scenes of the janitor working at the Cantor Arts Center, leading a union activist meeting for Hispanic workers and learning English with Habla el Dia at Stanford’s El Centro Chicano: Gordon and Meredith enlivened each scene with voiceovers from Garcia himself, using segments from an interview and stanzas read from his original poetry, the article added.
"Rebekah and Kevin had to figure out a way to represent Doro''s poetry and they decided to allow his words to complement the scenes from his life that play out in the film," said art and art history Professor Jan Krawitz.
"The voice of his poetry amplifies the more traditional voiceover that provides some of the backstory and exposition of the film," Krawitz concluded.
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