Blog » Farmer Veteran Project, a documentary by Vittles Films
Writer Victoria Bouloubasis is a graduate of UNC-Chapel Hill's School of Journalism and Mass Communication. Her primary medium for storytelling is through freelance food journalism and maintaining the blog This Feeds Me. Victoria’s topical interests range from the cultural symbolism associated with food, the fight for fair food access and farmworker rights. She is a chief contributor to the Independent Weekly and this summer she’ll be work with the Carolina Farm Stewardship Association. Victoria helped draft the founding mission of Vittles, contributed to Café Sense and is the Outreach Coordinator for The Farmer Veteran Project.
Among all the roles I fulfill in my hodgepodge of creative work, I’d say my favorite is that of a collaborator. When a project clicks—when we all, as a group, truly believe in it—a raw energy and creative honesty erupt into something beyond aesthetic art. It becomes a piece with purpose.
I’m humbled to be a part of the founding of Vittles Films, based in Durham. As a collective of respected colleagues and friends, we came together with a desire to explore the intersections of food and people in a lyrical form of documentary storytelling. In doing so, we are encouraging a new generation of community through food and film. We view our films in large groups, cross-legged and among the fireflies. We share the experience with home-cooked meals and homespun chatter. And we pour our hearts, tirelessly, into every project.
We're currently working on our most ambitious project, The Farmer Veteran Project (working title), a documentary film about transition and possibility in the face of pain and trauma. Yesterday, we launched a Kickstarter campaign to raise the necessary funds to continue production of this feature-length documentary. Our rewards for donors include special edition prints, photographs and crafts from local artists and the chance to be included in the film credits as a producer.
Alex Sutton is one of the 1.6 million veterans from the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan trying to make a return to regular life, many in rural communities with high unemployment. Meanwhile, the Department of Agriculture reports that half of all farmers in the United States will retire in the next decade. This film explores the formidable challenges we face as a country. How do we support the wounded? Who will continue to work the land responsibly?
With the steadfast care of his wife, Jessie, Alex fights for a life of purpose in his rural North Carolina. Their story is part of an emerging trend to introduce the regenerative qualities of farming to combat veterans seeking a different way of life.
On Wednesday, June 20, at 7:30 p.m., Vittles will host a benefit dinner at Vin Rouge Bistro in Durham to support the project. Chef Matt Kelly has graciously planned a beautiful five-course menu with wine at $100 per person. Committed to our cause, Chef Kelly made the generous decision to donate all the proceeds to the Farmer Veteran Project. We still have a few spots left. Please consider making a reservation. (Menu pasted below.) And as we pursue the making of a film dear to our community, and many more films like those, please help us spread the word.
Fill up. Take part.
Menu Vin Rouge Bistro’s Vittles Film Benefit Dinner
• Chilled local tomato soup, peeky toe crab, avocado, basil
• Salad of smoked NC trout, horseradish, fennel, rye croutons, preserved lemon aioli
• Ricotta gnocchi, Johnston County ham, creme fraiche, curry
• Filet of Beef, burgundian escargot, creamed spinach, pont neuf potatoes, Borderlaise sauce
• Chocolate mousse, Maldon sea salt, Argumanto