John Casey Project

by Tony Blass

CA

In February of 2017, Professor John Casey succumbed to cancer.  Casey, as most everyone called him, was taken from us too soon, but we are grateful for what he left behind for us to discover and preserve. It is our goal to begin the preservation of Casey’s enormous educational and art legacy with a short documentary film which will feature his widow Rebecca telling how she has only just begun to learn who Casey truly was.  It will set the stage for us to discover who John Casey was as a philosopher, an artist, a craftsman, a teacher, an environmentalist, and a friend.

The John Casey Project’s short documentary film is focused on Rebecca’s realization of who her husband was and his profound affect on his students as he lay dying from a disease that was ravaging his body.  Casey wrote one last letter to his students that asked them to join him at his bedside to simply hold his hand.  He advised them one last time that “our lives are experiences to be fully lived,” which is exactly what he did to the very end.  As Casey’s students showed up at their home, Rebecca realized that his impact on those who had been in his classroom was greater than she had previously understood.  He had always been a role model for breaking down the barriers by thinking outside the box.  He ran naked through the woods as a personal journey of pushing the edges of physicality and spirituality.  He used his art to explore social outcasts and political issues.  And, he developed coursework decades ahead of its time that sought to bring ethics and environmentalism to business. The goal of the short film isn’t to tell Casey’s full story, but to begin our journey as filmmakers and artists in discovering who he really was and to ask what he has left behind for us to learn and share.

The short film for the John Casey Project is merely the first portion of the project.  It will be the central part of a museum exhibit of Casey’s art and woodwork and will be used as the basis for developing a full-length documentary and a book.  The initial filming for the short has already taken place, and now we are beginning post-production for sound and editing to complete it.  Our deadline for having a finished short film is November 17 because the Executive Producer, Tony Blass has been offered the opportunity to submit the film to the Florida Film Festival for viewing in April 2018, which will make it eligible for consideration for an Academy Award.  We are already researching other film festivals where the film can be viewed as well as exclusive VIP premieres in Los Angeles, Tampa, FL, and Asheville, NC.

We need your help to meet our November 17 deadline for completion.  The post-production costs to deliver a professional short film are what we need.  Our budget is $5000 which would give us access to the facilities and equipment we need to complete the project.  If we exceed our goal, we will utilize the additional funds for festival entries as well as seed money to begin to develop the museum exhibit for Casey’s art and woodwork. We appreciate any donation towards the goal, and even if you can not give at this time, we would appreciate if you would assist us towards meeting our goal by sharing the project with your friends and network.