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After decades of quiet living, 89 year-old former senator and 2008 presidential candidate Mike Gravel comes out of retirement when a group of teenagers convince him to run for president. Through Senator Gravel's official Twitter account, the Gravel teens embark on an unlikely adventure to qualify him for the Democratic debates in order to advance an anti-war, anti-corruption, and direct democracy agenda in the 2020 presidential race. (APRIL 27-28)

 

Director’s Statement: Skye Wallin

I discovered Senator Mike Gravel as he campaigned in the 2008 Democratic primaries, when I was an undergraduate at Denison University. I was drawn to his indictment against the Iraq War and the corporate military machine, and I discovered his past as THE foremost anti-war politician in modern American politics. I joined his campaign to protest forever wars and to educate more primary voters about anti-war issues. The campaign never gained traction, and Mike Gravel disappeared from the public eye.


In 2019, a Google Alert popped up on my computer about Senator Gravel (now 89) and his Twitter account being controlled by teenagers. I read his latest tweets and saw the teens were trying to qualify Mike for the 2019 presidential debates. As a storyteller, I run to the narratives that ignite my passions, and I quickly reached out to Senator Gravel and the teens so that I could begin documenting their adventure from the very first stages.


Through this unlikely journey, I have been witness to the political growth of young men who rocked the political establishment with optimism and humor. From a human perspective, I documented a story about a political gadfly who is brought back into relevance in his twilight years.


Regardless of one's politics, the Gravel teens are endearing in their optimism for change and haunting in their illumination of societal cancers in our world. One can't help but root for them, and for Mike, in their quest to qualify for the debates.

  • Year
    2020
  • Runtime
    95 minutes
  • Language
    English
  • Country
    United States
  • Premiere
    World
  • Director
    Skye Wallin
  • Screenwriter
  • Producer
    Jeff Hammer, Skye Wallin
  • Executive Producer
  • Cast
    Mike Gravel, Henry Williams, Elijah Emery, Henry Magowan, David Oks
  • Cinematographer
    Mike Revolvalcke, Bryan Sarkinen
  • Editor
    Karen Skloss, Sandra Guardado, Colin M. Day
  • Production Design
  • Sound Design
  • Music