Production Notes

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Since it is not a wanted thing, to let film teams into American High Schools, it took a lot of requests within a couple of years, until finally a permission for filming was given. Thus, when the approval arrived, it was clear to us, the team, that this is a one and only chance to show things that usually remain behind the curtain.

Since director Barbara Eder used to live in Brownsville and is considered as part of their society, she has the ability to get closer to the people and their stories than any other director who never experienced this special part of the world. Her contacts to gangs as well as to the upper-class society are of extraordinary value.

Director Barbara Eder during the shooting.

In May 2006 Barbara told Constanze Schumann about her experiences in Brownsville. Constanze caught fire and pushed her to make a movie about it. In December 2006 they both went to Brownsville for three weeks of research.  They met gangs, hung out with all sorts of teenagers and strengthened the bonds.  By the time they went back to Austria, they had no doubt that this project had unbelievably great potential.  They decided to make the movie within the next year.

“Despite of the size and complexity of the movie, we decided on a small team of five people. Knowing what it means to make a big feature film with only that small of a team, it’s more than crazy to even start. Especially when considering that the movie includes 186 scenes and roughly 110 actors. But Brownsville has its own way of handling things, just like us. Therefore the decision was clear: Either this way, or no way.” (B.Eder/C.Schumann)

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