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Class Divide (2016)
One Nation Under Stress
I AM EVIDENCE
CRACK_IN_THE_SYSTEM_1
BRICK_CITY_POSTER_ROBERT_201112
Inside the FBI: New York (2017)
RIKERS
Ocean Warriors
Chicagoland
Dirty Old Town
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BROOKLYN_BABYLON_1
Back In The Hood
BRICK_CITY_POSTER_1
Cadillac Records
Triangle
Captured
Gladiator Days
Heir to an Execution
The Last Party
Blowback
Second Coming?
The Secret Government
Prayer for a Perfect Season
Jersey Strong
Schmatta
Protocols of Zion
Soldiers in the Army of God
The Home Front
WHITEBOYZ_POSTER_BW
Hard Times
Baltimore Rising (2017)
SLAM_POSTER_1

NEWS

The Story of Stockton On My Mind

June 19, 2020

We are living through a unique moment in our history, simultaneously struggling to cope with a health crisis, an economic crisis and a social justice crisis. This unprecedented convergence has highlighted the ravages caused by our nation’s systemic racism and structural inequality, two major themes of our work here at Blowback.

 

Continue reading here

The I Promise Story by Director Marc Levin

April 12, 2020

To my friends and colleagues,

In these dark times we look for light and hope. My wife and I have been binging on teen comedies. But a new series I directed on LeBron James’ I Promise School may offer a more compelling and inspiring escape from the 24/7 coverage of the virus spread.

I PROMISE was supposed to be unveiled by Quibi, the new streaming platform, at this year’s Tribeca Film Festival.  When the festival was postponed we were crushed.  But in a strange way, it may have even more meaning now as we try to deal with this pandemic.

read the full story here

‘I PROMISE’ PREMIERES APRIL 6 ON QUIBI

March 25, 2020

Episodes 1-3 will be released on April 6 followed by new episodes daily! Pre-order Quibi for a 90-day free trial. For more information go to Quibi.com.

I PROMISE is an original documentary series featuring an in-depth look at the first academic year inside the groundbreaking I Promise School that opened its doors in 2018. 

 

I PROMISE tells the story of LeBron James’ efforts to close the achievement gap in his hometown of Akron, Ohio through the eyes of the inspiring students who are resetting expectations of their futures. The series will explore the day-to-day trials, triumphs, and life-changing impact of the school staff, students and families working together in a unique, family-first educational environment that embraces the trauma and challenges many face in Akron.

‘STOCKTON ON MY MIND’ TO PREMIERE AT 2020 TRIBECA FILM FESTIVAL

March 03, 2020

Director Marc Levin's latest feature HBO documentary has been selected to premiere at the 2020 Tribeca Film Festival.  For tickets and screening information, click here.
 

Stockton on my Mind is the multi-layered story of millennial mayor, Michael Tubbs, a Stanford graduate who grew up in poverty with a single mother and his father in prison. He left his internship at the Obama White House to try to save his beleaguered hometown of Stockton, CA after his cousin was murdered. Although elected the same day as Trump, he has succeeded in making his progressive agenda part of the mainstream conversation. The film wraps his personal journey together with the social policy incubator he's creating as he works to “Upset the Setup.”

2019 EMMY WINNER!

September 24, 2019

"I Am Evidence" (HBO) won the 2019 International Emmy for Best Documentary. Congratulations to Executive Producer Marc Levin!

2019 EMMY NOMINATIONS

July 30, 2019

Congratulations Marc Levin and Daniel B Levin on your 2019 International Emmy Awards nominations!

Marc Levin was an executive producer of "I Am Evidence," which is nominated in the Outstanding Investigative Documentary and Best Documentary categories. (HBO)

Daniel B. Levin was the Director of Photography for "Rest in Power: the Trayvon Martin Story" which is nominated in the Outstanding Social Issue Documentary category. (Paramount Network)

'ONE NATION UNDER STRESS' Premieres on HBO March 25th, 2019

March 22, 2019

"Revealing. Frightening. Maddening  [...] a beautiful work of journalistic cinema.” - Bill Moyers

 

"With its mix of scientific rigor and powerful, flesh-and-blood storytelling, it’s one of those rare shows with the potential to change your life." - Arianna Huffington

"In an eye-opening new film, Dr Sanjay Gupta explores the link between stress and the continuing fall in US life expectancy." - The Guardian

"File this under required viewing for anyone wanting to know more about what modern society is doing to our collective health."  - /Film

"One Nation Under Stress is thoughtful, provocative and a deep look at the causes of stress and its destructive consequences."  - Newsday

“CNN Medical Correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta goes digging for answers in One Nation Under Stress, his gripping new HBO documentary.”  - Extra

“Throughout the documentary, Gupta displays an incredible level of empathy and concisely communicates complex medical concepts.” - The Daily Trojan

“It’s a must see doc dealing with an issue that affects all of us.” - The Interrobang 

Top Picks - The New York TimesThe Seattle Times, and Salon 

CINEMA EYE HONORS: 'BALTIMORE RISING' WINS OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT IN NONFICTION FILM FOR BROADCAST

January 14, 2019

HBO's Baltimore Rising, directed by Sonja Sohn, won Outstanding Achievement in Nonfiction Film for Broadcast at the 2019 Cinema Eye Honors. In the wake of Freddie Gray's death, the documentary follows the activists, police officers, community leaders and gang affiliates, who struggle to hold Baltimore together.

 

Thanks to HBO and congratulations to Sonja Sohn and the entire team for their dedication to this story.

 

Learn more about Baltimore Rising here.

EXPLORERS AND ADVENTURERS: 'CHASING THE THUNDER' WINS PRIZE AT FRIDAY HARBOR FILM FESTIVAL

November 07, 2018

Chasing the Thunder, a high-seas documentary directed by Mark Benjamin and Marc Levin, won the 'Explorers and Adventurers' prize at Washington's Friday Harbor Film Festival.

 

The documentary follows the dramatic 110-day chase of the notorious illegal fishing vessel, the Thunder. 

 

Watch the full series, Ocean Warriors, on Animal Planet.

'I AM EVIDENCE' AND 'BALTIMORE RISING' NOMINATED FOR CINEMA EYE HONORS

October 25, 2018

HBO had four films nominated for this year’s Cinema Eye Honors in the category of Outstanding Achievement in Nonfiction Film for Broadcast. Marc Levin of Blowback Productions was the executive producer of two nominated films: Sonja Sohn’s Baltimore Rising and Trish Adlesic & Geeta Gandbhir’s I Am Evidence.

 

I Am Evidence showcases the devastating consequences of the hundreds of thousands of untested rape kits in the United States. This film explores this issue through survivors’ experiences as they confront the criminal justice process.

 

Learn more about I Am Evidence here.

 

Baltimore Rising follows activists, police officers, community leaders and gang affiliates who struggle to hold Baltimore together in wake of the death of Freddie Gray, even as the homicide rate hits record levels, and explores how to make change when change is hard.

 

Learn more about Baltimore Rising here.

SONJA SOHN'S 'BALTIMORE RISING' ON HBO DRILLS DOWN ON LIFE AFTER FREDDIE GRAY - BALTIMORE SUN

November 17, 2017

HBO's "Baltimore Rising" opens on a brilliant note. 

The documentary directed by Sonja Sohn, of "The Wire," instantly establishes itself visually with an overhead camera shot scanning down and across a row of the boarded-up, crumbling, abandoned row houses that have sadly become the dominant image of this city. The wail of a police siren, one of the media’s favorite audio cues for Baltimore, is heard in the distance...

'BALTIMORE RISING' DOCUMENTARY ABOUT RIOTS TO PREMIERE ON HBO - ABC NEWS

November 16, 2017

BALTIMORE (WMAR) - It's been two years since the riots broke out in Baltimore after the death of Freddie Gray, and Thursday is the local premiere of a new documentary filmed in the aftermath.

'Baltimore Rising' is an HBO documentary directed by Sonja Sohn, who played Detective Keema Greggs on 'The Wire'.

The film looks at Baltimore from several perspectives, including that of Genard "Shadow" Barr, a former gang member who now specializes in job reentry programs, and Makayla Gilliam-Price, a young activist who founded her high school's justice organization.

Thursday night's premiere is at the Charles Theater at 6:00 p.m. 'Baltimore Rising' premieres on HBO and HBO GO on November 20. 

'FREEWAY: CRACK IN THE SYSTEM' NOW AVAILABLE THROUGH VIDEO ON DEMAND SERVICES

October 09, 2017

Great news! For all those who have been patiently waiting, "Freeway: Crack in the System" is now available to purchase or rent on iTunes, Youtube, Google Play, Amazon Prime, and other internet platforms, as well as through satellite and cable providers like Dish Network and Verizon Fios. Spread the word!

DVD and Blu-ray release of the film to follow in early November! Stay tuned!

FAMED FBI AGENT TELLS ALL ABOUT SEARCH FOR 9/11 MASTERMIND

June 01, 2017

Famed New York FBI counterterrorism agent Frank Pellegrino has gone public for the first time about his decade-long search for 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed.

Pellegrino — who has never spoken on camera before — reveals in a TV show how he believes the FBI could have prevented 9/11 and discusses his frustration with the CIA for withholding key information from the Bureau and preventing him from questioning KSM after his arrest.

INSIDE THE FBI: NEW YORK. FIRST PROMO AND PREMIERE DATE

March 24, 2017

Dick Wolf has another new show coming — but this one’s not an NBC procedural. The docuseries Inside the FBI: New York will premiere at 10 PM Thursday, April 27, on USA Network, the NBCUniversal-owned net said today. It also released the first promo for the series. Watch it now!

RIKERS SCREENING AT WESLEYAN UNIVERSITY ON FEBRUARY 7

February 03, 2017

Please join the special screening of RIKERS at Wesleyan University on Tuesday, February 7 at 7:00pm

Director Marc Levin to host a Q&A after the screening

OCEAN WARRIORS PICKED UP FOR BROADCAST IN EUROPE, AUSTRALIA, MIDDLE EAST, AFRICA

February 02, 2017

Spiegal TV has now acquired the rights to air OCEAN WARRIORS in Germany while Discovery APAC has picked up the series for Australia and New Zealand.

A separate deal has also been made with Discovery Europe that means the programme will air across the Nordic region, Eastern Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

WORLD PREMIERE OF RIKERS AT DOC NYC ON NOVEMBER 12

November 09, 2016

From executive producer Bill Moyers and Brick City TV's producers Marc Levin and Mark Benjamin (Chicagoland, Brick City) comes the first film to focus exclusively on former detainees of Rikers Island, offering searing testimonials about the deep-seated culture of systemic violence and corruption that has plagued the notorious NYC jail for decades. From the trauma of entry, through the jail’s brutal systems of control and punishment, to the challenges of life after prison, Rikers serves as an indictment of mass incarceration.


SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 12

4:00PM

DOC NYC
SVA Theatre
333 West 23rd Street
New York, NY 10011

PURCHASE YOUR TICKETS HERE

FREE COMMUNITY SCREENING OF "CLASS DIVIDE" WITH COREY JOHNSON

September 23, 2016

HBO and the Office of Council Member Corey Johnson invites you to a Community Screening of "Class Divide" on Monday, September 26 at 6:30PM at Cinepolis Chelsea Cinema on 260 West 23rd Street in NYC. 

The event is free – RSVP at CoreyJohnson.NYC/Events or by emailing district3@council.nyc.gov or calling 212-564-7757. 

Q&A with director Marc Levin and select cast to follow the screening!

CLASS DIVIDE AT URBANWORLD FILM FESTIVAL ON SEPTEMBER 23

September 22, 2016

Tomorrow, Friday September 23, "Class Divide" will screen at AMC EMPIRE Theater on 42nd Street in Times Square as a part of the 20th Urbanworld Film Festival. The screening will take place at 5:30PM, with director Marc Levin and select cast in attendance. Buy your tickets here: http://www.urbanworld.org/2016/class-divide

CLASS DIVIDE TO SCREEN AT INTERNATIONAL DOCUMENTARY ASSOCIATION LA

September 08, 2016

Save the date! CLASS DIVIDE will screen at International Documentary Association in Los Angeles next Wednesday, September 14 at 7:30PM. 

Q&A with director Marc Levin to follow the screening!

For more info, please visit http://www.documentary.org/screening/class-divide

 

* * *

"Run, don’t walk, to see, Class Divide."  - Huffington Post

 

“Ambitious and engrossing.”  - The New York Times

 

"Class Divide shows that kids on both sides of the divide are anxious about their economic prospects. Forceful and powerful filmmaking." - Nobel prize-winning economist Joseph Stieglitz 

 

"Soulful insights … emotionally charged …” - Chelsea Now

"FREEWAY: CRACK IN THE SYSTEM" NOMINATED FOR EMMY AWARD

July 29, 2016

FREEWAYis nominated for OUTSTANDING INVESTIGATIVE JOURNALISM: LONG FORM.  Built around the connection between the US cocaine epidemic and the Nicaraguan Contras, FREEWAY: CRACK IN THE SYSTEM tells a tale of broken dreams, drug dealers, dirty cops, and government complicity. More compelling than fiction, it’s the real story behind America’s longest war. For more info on the film, please visit http://blowbackproductions.com/freeway

UPCOMING SCREENINGS OF "CLASS DIVIDE"

July 29, 2016

FRIDAY JULY 29 AT 6:40PM 
SAN FRANCISCO JEWISH FILM FESTIVAL

Castro Theater 
429 Castro Street
For more info and tickets go to:  festival's website.

FRIDAY AUGUST 12 AT 1:00PM
MARTHA'S VINEYARD AFRICAN AMERICAN FILM FESTIVAL

Martha's Vineyard Performing Arts Center
For tickets go to: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/the-14th-annual-rsf-marthas-vineyard-african-american-film-festival-tickets-18175936716?ref=ebtnebtckt#tickets

TUESDAY AUGUST 23 AT 6:00PM
BLACK HARVEST FILM FESTIVAL IN CHICAGO

For more info and tickets please visit: http://www.siskelfilmcenter.org/blackharvest and scroll down to see the Class Divide listing.  
 

CLASS DIVIDE SELECTED FOR SAN FRANCISCO JEWISH FILM FESTIVAL

July 05, 2016

"Class Divide" was selected for this year's 36th annual San Francisco Jewish Film Festival – the first and most prestigious Jewish film festival in the world. The three-week long event brings world-class programming and contemporary film and media from some of the world’s greatest festivals including Cannes, Sundance, Berlinale, Tribeca and South by Southwest as well as five world premieres. 

 

"Class Divide" will screen on July 29 at 6:40PM at the Castro Threatre. Q&A with producer Mike Farrah to follow the screening.

 

For more info and tickets please visit festival's website.

EAST HAMPTON LIBRARY SCREENING OF "HARD TIMES: LOST ON LONG ISLAND"

June 10, 2016

Join us tomorrow, Saturday June 11, for the next Hamptons International Film Festival Monthly Screening, featuring the documentary that won the Audience Award at HIFF 2011, "HARD TIMES: LOST ON LONG ISLAND." Q&A with director Marc Levin will follow the 3PM screening. 

EAST HAMPTON LIBRARY

159 Main St, East Hampton, NY 11937
Saturday, June 11, 3:00 pm
Followed by Q&A with director Marc Levin

For more info and to RSVP, please visit http://hamptonsfilmfest.org/features/june-library-screening-of-hard-times-lost-on-long-island/

CLASS DIVIDE SELECTED FOR PROVINCETOWN INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL

June 07, 2016

Wonderful news! "Class Divide" has been selected as part of this year's 18th Annual Provincetown International Film Festival that will take place June 15-19 in Provincetown, MA. One of the country's preeminent film festivals, PIFF presents a diverse array of American and international narrative features, documentaries and short films. "Class Divide" will be screened over the course of two days, with the following scheduled screening times:

 

Thursday June 16th, 2:30pm, Waters Edge 2

Friday June 17th, 7:30pm, Waters Edge 2

Director Marc Levin, producer Daphne Pinkerson and one of the film's main characters, Yasemin Smallens, will attend the screenings and following Q&As. For more info and tickets please visit http://www.ptownfilmfest.org/films/schedule.php

June 06, 2016

SATURDAY, JUNE 11th 2016

10:30 AM-2:30 PM

HUDSON GUILD

ELLIOTT CENTER

441 West 26 th Street, New York, New York, 10001

RIP Lee McCullum, One of the Main Characters in CHICAGOLAND

May 13, 2016

I was reading the NY Times article headlined, "FBI Director says 'Viral Video Effect' Blunts Police Work."  Director Comey was speculating on the reasons behind the recent spike in murders in cities like Chicago, Baltimore, and Las Vegas. And then I got the text: "Lee Jr was shot and killed last night."

 

My heart stopped. I felt sick. All of a sudden the morning news, with its analysis and statistics, became painfully personal. Lee McCullum was one of the main characters in our 8-hour CNN series, "Chicagoland." He was the homeless ex-gangbanger who graduated from Fenger High School as an honor student and athlete. When he was crowned prom king, it brought tears to our eyes, all of us hoping he would beat the odds and make it.

 

April 19, 2016

Twenty-seven years ago, when Donald Trump was riding high, some filmmakers started to make a documentary film about him.

 

Twenty-five years ago, when Trump was on the ropes, they finished “Trump: What’s the Deal?”

 

No one saw it.

 

Donald Trump went after the very rich —- much richer than Trump —- mogul who had financed the film. He threatened to sue. Made personal attacks. The mogul decided he didn’t need the trouble. Not that anything the mogul decided really mattered —- no broadcaster would touch the film.

Score one for Trump.

 

Twenty-five years later, score one for the filmmakers —- ‘Trump: What’s the Deal?” is on the web.

April 12, 2016

By DANIEL M. GOLD |

Gentrification is not usually the stuff of vivid, gripping documentaries. The impacts typically arrive too slowly, the changes too incremental to register on the lives they eventually affect.Not so, however, in the West Chelsea neighborhood of Manhattan. There, a hypergentrification — fueled by the High Line park’s spectacular revitalization of this formerly industrial area, as well as by wealthy real estate investors seeking new Manhattan addresses — has resulted in a jarring compression of new construction of office space, museums and luxury apartments. The cityscape is being remade not in decades but years, even months.

 

TICKETS FOR SELECT SCREENINGS OF "CLASS DIVIDE" AT IFC GO ON SALE TONIGHT

April 08, 2016

IFC Center has announced that tickets for Wednesday (April 13)  and Thursday (April 14)  8:00pm  screenings of "Class Divide" will go on sale tonight! Visit http://www.ifccenter.com for details.

 

Q&A with director Marc Levin will follow both of those shows.

 

The complete schedule will be posted on IFC Center website on Monday, April 11. Stay tuned!

April 07, 2016

Get ready for Blowback Thursdays. Follow us here: https://www.instagram.com/blowbackproductions/

CLASS DIVIDE DOCUMENTARY GETS TO THE HEART OF TODAY'S CHELSEA

April 06, 2016

BY EILEEN STUKANE | Rosa does gymnastic twists on the Elliott-Chelsea playground bars as she expounds the wisdom of an eight-year-old: “I hate money. I hate, hate, hate, hate, hate, hate money…People fight over money, and I hate that they fight over money. Money was made by the Devil, I think, because God didn’t say, ‘Oh, you have to pay for this.’ ”

 

Continue reading on chelseanow.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

March 25, 2016

Come see an award-winning HBO documentary about the  dramatic changes transforming Chelsea. 

 

APRIL 13th-19th

AT THE IFC CENTER

323 6th Ave. at W. 3rd St., NYC | (212) 924-7771

 

Q&A with director Marc Levin on Wednesday, April 13th and Thursday, April 14th.

 

For showtimes and tickets please visit  www.ifccenter.com

March 08, 2016

READ MARC LEVIN'S TAKE ON TRUMP AND THE DOCUMENTARY TRUMP: WHAT'S THE DEAL BY LIBBY HANDROS AND MARC'S FATHER, AL LEVIN.

 

"Watching the Republican Presidential candidates go mano y mano with Donald Trump in last night’s first debate, I recall a night almost 20 years ago when I witnessed a face off between the Donald and my father, Al Levin."

 

March 26, 2015

The MAYSLES CINEMA PRESENTS FREEWAY: CRACK IN THE SYSTEM 

 

THURSDAY, MARC 26th, 7:30 PM - WEDNESDAY, APRIL 1st, 7:30 PM.

 

Q&A with Director Marc Levin in person and Freeway Rick Ross via Skype following the screenings Thursday, March 26th, which is sponsored by Jineea Butler and the Hip Hop Union. 

 

Q&A with Director Marc Levin following the screening Friday, March 27th.

 

Click here for ticket info.

 

 

MARCH 6th, 10/9c ONLY ON CNN

November 11, 2013

 

PART OF A 4-DAY MASTERCLASS WITH MARC LEVIN (December 5-8, 2013)

 

On December 5th, the Maysles Cinema brings you the film that captivated critics and judges from Sundance to Cannes and turned slam poetry into the global phenomenon it is today: Marc Levin's SLAM. Join Saul Williams, Sonja Sohn, Bonz Malone, Bob Holman, Liza Jessie Peterson, Richard Stratton and Marc Levin at the Dempsey Auditorium in Harlem for the 15th Anniversary of this seminal film and the first gathering of the talent behind it since 1998.

 

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