This is a rock - DR Congo PSA

June 17, 2009

Luminant Media was approached by Participant Pictures and asked to contribute to their TakePart/Project Enough campaign investigating the current situation in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Project Enough’s “Raise Hope For Congo” campaign highlights the use of conflict minerals in consumer electronics, and the appalling sexual violence happening right now in the DRC.

Takepart.com is Participant’s incredible newly-designed, activist-oriented social networking site that puts the full force of their feature work behind important causes in a way designed to stimulate discussion and action.

Luminant stepped up to the challenge by creating the “This is a Rock” PSA.

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http://www.raisehopeforcongo.org

http://www.takepart.com/

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Hidden from Light - Independent Documentary

May 28, 2009

In March of 2008, we followed a team of doctors and surgeons to a remote Mayan village in Guatemala to investigate one of the most bizarre disease clusters in the world.

The disease is called XP, or Xeroderma Pigmentosum. People born with XP develop dramatic and invasive skin cancers when exposed to any amount of sunlight. The medical team we followed went to Guatemala to save the kid’s lives. But they also had bigger aspirations - they hoped to learn something from this unusual genetic abnormality that could apply to us all. They wanted to find out if a resilient group of Mayan kids in a jungle in Guatemala with a mystery hidden in their DNA could somehow hold the keys to solving skin cancer - the most common cancer in the world.

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Independent Documentary www.hiddenfromlight.com

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Yes We Will - PSA

May 27, 2009

Luminant Media was approached by the DC-based think tank, the Forum for Education and Democracy, and asked to find a way to communicate a message of urgency to the incoming Obama administration about education.

Their plea was simple; education was still vital, and can’t get lost in the sea of challenges facing the new administration.

We decided to go to some inner-city LA classrooms, and see what the kids there had to say about it. The response was overwhelming, within days of going up on the web, thousands of people had jumped on board, watched the video and signed the petition to keep kids a priority.

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The Forum for Education and Democracy www.willwereally.com

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Sarah Chayes in “Life After War/A House for Haji Baba.”

May 25, 2009

Luminant director Brian Knappenberger follows the story of NPR reporter-turned humanitarian worker, Sarah Chayes. Sarah gave up her job at NPR after the initial fighting in Afghanistan in 2001 to help rebuild a village destroyed in the war. This is the story of what she goes through to rebuild one house. In this scene the recipient/final owner argues for more space.

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http://www.pbs.org/frontlineworld/stories/afghanistan/chayes.html

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Scene from “Life After War/A House For Haji Baba”

May 24, 2009

Luminant director Brian Knappenberger follows the story of NPR reporter-turned humanitarian worker, Sarah Chayes. Sarah gave up her job at NPR after the initial fighting in Afghanistan in 2001 to help rebuild a village destroyed in the war. This is the story of what it takes to rebuild one house. Here, Sarah tries to convince governor Gul Agha Shirzai to release the hold he has on a local quarry, so she can buy the stone she needs to build.

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http://www.pbs.org/frontlineworld/stories/afghanistan/chayes.html

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Coral Reef at John Pennekamp

May 22, 2009

Luminant Media was asked by the Travel Channel to explore what was happening with this coral reef off the coast of Florida, the third largest coral reef in the world.

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Scene from “A Murder in Kyiv”

May 20, 2009

Luminant Director Brian Knappenberger visits Ukraine with Myroslava Gongadze, who is investigating the mysterious and gruesome death of her husband Georgy Gongadze, an independent journalist who went missing during the Kuchma administration. 

When secret audio tapes turned up that seemed to implicate the President, grass roots protests erupted that eventually lead to the “Orange Revolution.” Here, she confronts the beneficiary of those protests, the new President, Victor Yuschenko.

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http://www.pbs.org/frontlineworld/stories/ukraine404/thestory.html

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Myroslava Gongadze from “A Murder in Kyiv.”

May 20, 2009

Luminant Director Brian Knappenberger visits Ukraine with Myroslava Gongadze, who is investigating the mysterious death of her husband Georgy. 

Georgy Gongadze was an independent journalist who went missing during the Kuchma administration. When secret audio tapes turned up that seemed to implicate the President, grass roots protests erupted that eventually lead to the “Orange Revolution.”

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Aired:  PBS Frontline/WORLD

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Randy Pausch PSA

May 16, 2009

Randy Pausch made his famous “Last Lecture” at Carnegie Mellon on September 19, 2007. The lecture was scheduled before he was diagnosed with Pancreatic Cancer.  After he found out he used the occasion to give a powerful speech about achieving childhood dreams. A video of the speech was an overnight sensation, seen by millions of people on YouTube and lead to appearances on Oprah and a book called “The Last Lecture” which became a New York Times best-seller for an astonishing 61 weeks.   

We met Randy during this time and followed his journey to battle the disease through a series of popular PSAs for the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network.  We, as everyone, were very moved by his candid and often shocking approach to getting out the word on Pancreatic Cancer.  He dedicated his life to finding a cure and bringing awareness to the disease in a way that truly made a lot of people wake up and take notice.  Randy you are missed.

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Cape Town Drummers

May 13, 2009

We were asked by the Travel Channel to explore Cape Town. We gladly obliged, and found these drummers by the V&A Waterfront. 

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