A Chicago filmmaker named Cyrus Dowlatshahi is working on a feature length documentary about life on the South Side of Chicago.

His footage is incredible. Nothing is doctored or scripted. These are raw vignettes of real people living their lives in the most isolated, poverty-stricken, and misunderstood section of the third largest city in the United States.

South Side of Chicago Documentary:

Dowlatshahi is currently fundraising for the project through Kickstarter.com. His goal is $25,000; so far, he has raised $7,200. To support this fascinating project, check out his Kickstarter page here.

He outlines three reasons why he wants to shine a light on Chi-town’s South Side neighborhoods:

“1.  They are almost 100% African-American.
2.  Outsiders don’t come here.  These neighborhoods are primarily residential, and unless you live here or are visiting someone here there is no reason to go (Chicago’s skyscrapers and workplaces, big-name restaurants, theaters and nightlife are all in other parts of the city).
3.  These neighborhoods are plagued by poverty and gang violence.”

He continues:

“the South Side is not made up of transplants, it’s made up of residents and families who have been living there for generations.  People know each other and respect their elders and exercise a certain common ownership in their neighborhoods… traditional aspects of community that are found less and less in today’s fast-paced and quickly-changing world.

This film, then, is about how people live.  In an age of sensationalized reality TV and oversimplified broadcast news, I hope that my more loose and informal style of non-fiction provides viewers with the opportunity not only to really get to know the people of the South Side, but to make their own assessments and interpretations about what they see.”

For more information on this exciting project, check out Dowlatshahi’s Kickstarter page. And be sure to hit up the Huffington Post for a great interview with the man himself.

What do you think of Dowlatshahi’s documentary project?

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