What a wild journey it's been since starting my first production Yo Soy José in April 2012. Since then a lot has changed. The main character of Yo Soy José, Joe Matera, passed away shortly after releasing the film this summer. He was a great man and an even better friend. He never failed to give an encouraging word at the most appropriate time. I can honestly say that if it wasn't for him and his amazing family Salty Stache Productions would still just be a dream.
Yo Soy José was first screened at Fusion Church in Somers Point, NJ on July 13, 2013 and was a huge hit. Over 300 people came out! After July 13, screenings started popping up all over South Jersey... in fact I've pretty much lost count as to how many have actually happened. Even though we lost our friend Joe here on earth his legacy is still living on through this film and the people he touched in his life along the way.
Yo Soy José was a huge launching pad for Salty Stache Productions. This past April (2013) I had the amazing opportunity to live in San Bartolo, Peru with the purpose of creating a film called Reformer . Throughout the last number of years Peru has had a terrible problem with "Street Kids". Because of financial and family issues a large amount of children in Peru end up spending their childhood living on the street. These "Street Kids" are then forced into prostitution and the drug world and many of them end up dead or with serious problems.
Life for kids in Peru is slowly improving but that would not be happening with out the help from an amazing woman named Lucy Borja. Lucy has dedicated her life to finding homes for these kids. She is known as a renegade and is hated by the crooked and corrupt politicians and police force. She has set up countless homes around Peru helping kids get healthy and enrolling them in good schools giving them the education they will need to find a better life than one on the street.
San Bartolo is located right on the water overlooking one of the many great surf breaks of the region. Because of the great waves and surf culture in town many of the kids who Lucy has placed there have developed a burning passion for surfing. One of the best surfers is a 17 year old named Jorgé. Reformer is about Jorgé's life and how he wants to use his talent for surfing to build a better existence for himself and his family... as well as helping other kids who yearn for something more. Look for Reformer to be screening at film festivals across the country this upcoming winter and spring!
With each new project, Salty Stache Productions continues to grow. At the moment freelance production has been taking up most of my time. From wedding videos to working with various non-profits and other organizations creating videos that will best suit their desires. In a few days I am leaving for The Democratic Republic of Congo where I will be working for 2 weeks with the United Methodist Aviation Mission. Gathering video footage from planes and on the ground, I will be capturing the insane work this group does on the continent of Africa.
Salty Stache is a company that has a passion for telling stories from unlikely places. My company is still very new but I am excited for what the future holds and can't wait to see how the next chapter of the Salty Stache journey unfolds.