Gasland (Philadelphia)
Documentary Feature
Free Show

Friday Sep 3, 2010
7:00PMDoors Open
7:15Jay D Clark
8:00Live Performance by Scorch (Fire Dancers)
8:30Film Begins
10:00Q and A with Josh Fox, PennEnvironment, and Protecting Our Waters
10:30After-party at PYT
In the event of rain, the screening will still go on outdoors.

VENUE
The Piazza at Schmidt's
In the Piazza at the center of Schmidt\'s
Northern Liberties
Germantown Ave & N 2nd St, Philadephia, PA 19123
Take the MFL Subway to Girard Station or the #15 Trolley to Girard Station at Girard & Front

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This Show Presented in Partnership With
Fledgling Fund
PennEnvironment

Protecting Our Waters

The Philadelphia Underground Film Festival
The show will go on in the rain. There is some cover for the audience, but bring an umbrella. Forecast calls for a drizzly day but a clear evening.

Join us at the Piazza at Schmidt's for a special FREE screening of Josh Fox's extraordinary and impactful documentary Gasland. As part of Rooftop's ongoing expansion to new cities, this will be our first show in Philadelphia. We couldn't have picked a better film, venue and set of partners to work with.


Limited chairs are available. Other seating is on astroturf, or in the surrounding bars and restaurants. You are welcome to bring your own seat or blanket.


This show is presented in partnership with PennEnvironment. We all want clean air, clean water, and open spaces. But it takes independent research and tough-minded advocacy to win concrete results for our environment--especially when powerful interests stand in the way of environmental progress. That's the idea behind PennEnvironment. We focus exclusively on protecting Pennsylvania's air, water and open spaces. We speak out and take action at the local, state and national levels to improve the quality of our environment and our lives.

We've been working aggressively to tackle the environmental and public health threats related to Marcellus Shale gas drilling. From air and water pollution to protecting public health to preserving our state parks and forests from drilling, PennEnvironment is lobbying the legislature and environmental officials; educating and engaging the public; doing the hard-hitting research to uncover the facts; and garnering media attention across Pennsylvania to highlight the threats posed by drilling--now and for future generations of Pennsylvanians.

This show is also presented in partnership with Protecting Our Waters Protecting Our Waters is a Philadelphia-based grassroots alliance committed to protecting the Delaware River watershed, the state of Pennsylvania, and the surrounding region from unconventional gas drilling and other threats to our drinking water, environment, and public health. We are building a fast-growing network of community-based activists putting increasing pressure on every level, from Philadelphia City Council to the Delaware River Basin Commission (the four-state entity which makes decisions about our watershed); from state legislators in Harrisburg to the halls of Congress and most importantly, the court of public opinion. This is a movement.

Right now the are urging everyone in the five-county area (Philadelphia, Chester, Delaware, Bucks Montgomery) to contact their City Councilperson and the Councilmembers at large regarding your concerns about hydrofracking, and ask them to press the DRBC not to issue permits until the EPA study is complete. They are excited to support PA Senator Ferlo's SB 1447, and PA Representative Mundy's HB 2609, for a one-year statewide moratorium. Dates for your calendar include: Sep. 15th DRBC meeting; Sep. 21 statewide lobby day for clean water; Sep. 28th special event TBA.


THE FILMS

Gasland (Josh Fox | 24 States Across America | 1 min.)
When a natural gas mining company offered Josh Fox and his upstate New York neighbors $100,000 each for the right to drill for gas on their land, Fox thought he'd better examine what was going on before he signed away his property. The result is the powerful and eye-opening documentary Gasland. Fox playfully derides his neighbors and historical precedents as "Pete Seeger and other banjo-playing freaks," letting the audience know that he's not predisposed to being a bleeding-heart environmentalist, but a moment later Fox is there plucking the five-string, whiling away the time waiting on hold in an endless loop of phone calls to the mining companies. He is, after all, an otherwise light-hearted everyman artist, trying simply to get to the heart of the matter.

Throughout the film, Fox is the emotional divining rod, wandering and wavering throughout the US, picking up on tragic tales of people, animals and places contaminated beyond repair, pointing always toward the hazardous link between "clean" natural gas and dangerously polluted water. Explaining the problem, Fox says, "Let me start at the beginning: this is Dick Cheney." In 2005, Cheney's secretive Energy Commission designed a bill that was able to overturn parts of various decades-old environmental-protection legislation, allowing for a relatively new process of gas drilling, invented by Halliburton. Commonly referred to as "fracking," in this new process, the mining companies inject a cornucopia of toxic chemicals deep into the ground and explode the rock beds. Companies across 38 states are doing this with almost no oversight or regulations, often operating within feet of homes, schools, streams, wells and aquifers. An EPA spokesmen describes the legislation as "Orwellian" and "Un-American."

As Fox chases the companies' operations across the country, he encounters cats and horses losing their hair in clumps, men and women with sudden painful illnesses, and houses where you can literally light the tap water on fire. Cowboys and roughnecks in the far west and deep south--certainly not your granola-eating tree-huggers--decry the situation with pathos, charm and a bit of mordant humor. The gas companies deny, deny, deny.

Fox is able to explain the process and the repercussions with an easy-going verve and a dire sense of urgency. With a swelling populist love for America, Fox gets the viewer to understand the problem and care deeply. Gasland begins as a personal query about Fox's own land, morphs into a documentary as he encounters people with stories to tell, and ends as activist rallying cry exposing one of America's most dangerous environmental secrets.

Rooftop Films, The Fledgling Fund and International WOW Company are proud to help expose these horrifying stories--amazingly wide-spread and consistent wherever natural gas is drilled--in the hopes that this won't be a secret for long. Get involved at Rooftop Films and gaslandthemovie.com.

-Mark Elijah Rosenberg

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Rooftop Films is a New York based non-profit whose mission is to engage diverse communities by showing independent movies in outdoor locations, producing new films, coordinating youth media education, and renting equipment at low cost to artists.

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