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Art can be really fucking hard.

Here is a confession: This was project was not initially supposed to take this long. Actually, this was not even supposed to be a feature film. And to be completely honest, when I first started rolling my camera from the balcony of an AirBnB in the middle of Acapulco’s “Golden” zone, I wasn’t even sure that this was a story worth telling. But here I am two years later still telling this story, and now blurring this lines with my own life’s tale.

The original trip to Acapulco in 2016 was only partially a production trip. I was feeling exhausted by the constantly inflating cost of living in the San Francisco Bay Area, and facing being priced out of my home. It was something that felt like I could not escape anywhere in the United States, so I started fantasizing about getting out of the country.

I didn’t have a plan or immediate desire to move away, but I wanted a break. My personality has a hard time traveling for leisure, so my vocation as a filmmaker/video producer combined with a chance story of my past led me to book a trip down to Acapulco. The goal was to maybe gather enough footage with this emerging community to put together a short film, and at the very least open up my social circle to some folks who managed to drop out of the American way of life.

I was immediately impressed by how open and welcoming everyone was in the community. Me and my associate producer were invited dinners and private meetups, driven around, and just generally treated like one of their own.

But I had only booked that trip for 6 days, and spent most of it just building a rapport with everyone and filtering through the amazingly unique collection of personalities. I didn’t really know for sure upon my departure what would come of it.

I spent the end of 2016 wrapping up a prior large project, and when I finally got around to digging through that first batch of footage, I felt madly inspired to keep going with this. I could see from afar on social media how rapidly the community and the Anarchapulco conference were evolving. And when I saw in mid-2017 that two of the people I spent the most time with on that first trip were forking the conference, I knew I had to be there.

So I spent the rest of the year eagerly waiting, promoting, fundraising, and building a team to turn this incidental maybe-a-short-film into a full feature production. Everything was going to come together in this second trip. There would be excitement, energy, and drama. We had behind-the-scenes access granted to both conferences. And unlike that first trip, there were plans, questions, and relationships all in place.

The footage we gathered on this trip was dynamic, interesting, and spontaneous. Yet I had a feeling on my way back to California that something was going to happen that would draw me back one more time. That thing did happen (though I’m not gonna spoil anything) and now we are planning on going back one more time to tie this story up.

The finish line is near and now you can help us get there even sooner by supporting us over at our crowdfunding page.

Todd Schramke