Director James Moll says he’s pleasantly surprised by the public reaction so far to the film Farmland. Moll talked about the Atlanta premier of the feature-length documentary that follows the lives of young farmers and ranchers.
“We had a Q&A afterward; everybody stayed for it and they asked a lot of questions and they wanted to know more about each one of the farmers,” said Moll, during a conference call with reporters Thursday morning. “And for me, that’s a good sign; that means that I did my job and I was able to introduce people to farmers in a way that they haven’t been introduced to in the past.”
Just before Farmland was screened at New York’s TriBeCa Film Festival, Georgia poultry producer Leighton Cooley told reporters he welcomed the opportunity to be part of the movie because, he says, the movie tells the famers’ story “in a way that had never been done before.”
“We can tell our story, but the opportunity to show our story, to actually allow people to see firsthand each of our farms to people, basically that wouldn’t ordinarily have the opportunity to do that was just a neat project,” he said.
Farmland was made with support from the U.S. Farmers and Ranchers Alliance using extensive footage and interviews with a half dozen farmers from all over the U.S. It was released this spring and the film’s website lists 105 venues nationally in which it’s scheduled to be shown.
The documentary grew into much more than Cooley said he envisioned in the beginning. “After seeing the film and the way that James just captured the farms, and the farmers, and the personalities, and our lives, and the way that we interact, and do, and think, and work,” said Cooley. “I love the way that Farmland tells the story of American agriculture through our eyes and through our hearts.”