OGDEN, Utah – Issac Goeckeritz, a filmmaker and Weber State University geography student, will debut his latest documentary, "Uintah United," at Peery's Egyptian Theater (2415 Washington Blvd., Ogden) on Nov. 22 at 7:30 p.m.
The documentary focuses on how the small town of Uintah in Weber County responded to the 1922 shooting of a student by the school's principal, Marlow J. Christensen. "Uintah United" tells the story of Christensen's successor, Golden Kilburn, as he struggled to unite a community divided by the incident and reach out to the murdered student's friends.
"While the film tells the story of the Uintah U, I found in my research that of the 400 hillside letters in the country, none has a story as dramatic and inspirational as this one," Goeckeritz said.
Research for the project included tracking down and interviewing surviving relatives of Kilburn and Christensen. Goeckeritz also held community socials in Uintah, inviting anyone with photographs of the city in the 1920s to share them with him for use in the project. "It's a very different way to do research compared to going to local archives," he said. "It was more intensive than my previous work."
"Uintah United" is narrated by former KSL news anchor Dick Nourse, written by James Findlay, and directed and produced by Goeckeritz.
Funding for the documentary came from several sources, including the Charles Redd Center for Western Studies and WSU. The two-year project cost $45,000, which includes the cost of equipment rentals, licensing fees, actors and costume design.
Tickets to the premiere are $12 and can be purchased at PeerysEgyptianTheater.com. Following the film, there will be a reception with the opportunity to meet Goeckeritz, Nourse and descendants of Golden Kilburn.
DVDs of "Uintah United" will be sold for $20 at the reception, as well as at igfilms.com.
In 2007, Goeckeritz released his first documentary, "Ogden: Junction City of the West." Other projects Goeckeritz has been involved with include work for Habitat for Humanity, ESPN, HBO, the United Way, Globous Relief Fund, United Families International, the Cathedral of the Madeleine and Madeleine Choir School.
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