Well, the premiere for Out of Egypt has come and gone, and I can say with certainty that it was successful on all counts. Thanks to everyone who came! What was important to me going into the this initial showing in San Jose had to do with positive reaction from a three different constituents; I was hoping that Copts who do not know me well, non-Copts, and clergy would enjoy the film and find value in it, and that was certainly the case from the feedback that I and my friends and family have received.
In terms of the numbers, there were approximately 200 people in attendance (145 paying), and my estimate is that about 75 were from St. George Church in San Jose, 90 to 100 from other Coptic churches in the Bay Area and 40 to 50 were non-Copts. Of the non-Copts, I knew about 30 personally, and 10 to 20 heard about Out of Egpyt either from friends or by reading press about the film.
All the proceeds of this particular showing went to the St. George Church building fund and totalled $1939.80, which is a great start! Personally, I thought the fundraising would kick into gear with the DVD sales, but the push has started early. Thanks again to everyone who has helped out!
Hi all! It looks like we'll be premiering OUT OF EGYPT on July 25, 2008 in San Jose, California. Details to follow.
There are so many things we've covered that it's going to be interesting to see what makes it in the movie and what ends up in the recycling bin. For example, we have about 20 hours of basketball footage and we will end up using less that 1 percent of it in the final product; that ratio is true for the rest of the footage as well.
Many people have asked about definite dates for the release of the documentary. It's difficult to be too specific at this point, but the first showing will most likely be in San Jose in June 2008. There will be also showings in Davis, CA as well as Austin, TX and Houston, TX that summer.
It's been exactly a year since we started rolling tape on the project, and we have about two months to go (not including interviews). I honestly thought I'd be sick of filming by this point but I'm not, so that's definitely a good thing. The positive surprises have been:
- Heather's camera work. She's been a huge help so far. We expected a couple of other people at church who claim that they are film experts to step up, but they haven't helped out yet. Heather has more than made up for their absences. But it's gonna be difficult to strap a camera to her wedding dress on August 25.
- Relative acceptance. Yes, some people are still doing the whole "don't film me oh my gosh it's so embarrassing" thing, but most people are going with the flow and that's great.
- Eddie and Irina's wedding timeframe. When we started on this project, I didn't think that my brother would be getting married during the next twelve months. the events surrounding the wedding have made for good footage
I'm looking forward to the next two months, and thanks to everyone so far who has helped out with filming, especially Heather Lannie, Joe Touma, Koky Riad, and Rohan Kamath.