Congratulations to “Bending Steel” director Dave Carroll. Their project received the most votes to win November’s Project of the Month. As a prize, they will receive a consultation from the Sundance Institute.
Here’s more information on the winning documentary:
A film about the art of the oldetime strongman, people who perform feats of strength such as bending nails and horseshoes with their bare hands, and break chains with their hair. It follows Queens native Chris Schoeck as he struggles to enter into a elite community and find personal fulfillment through this unusual activity. Introverted and socially awkward, Chris is an unlikely performer. We've stumbled upon a unique subject, have some amazing characters, and have captured a truly inspiring journey. It is a true New York story. The film will be shopped to the major international film festivals upon completion.
Producers: Dave Carroll, Ryan Scafuro
Director of Photography: Ryan Scafuro
Editor: John Hoyt
Composer: Fernando Martinez
This film quickly went from being a pet project to a full blown feature documentary for us. The strongman community is such a unique subculture rooted deep in American history. Then there is our main character. Chris has a very innocent quality to him, which makes him compelling to watch. He lacks the kind of self-concerned vanity that make people unnatural on camera. He eventually opened up to us with plot driving revelations. What we were capturing was truly amazing. Sharing someone’s intimate moments is very exposing and self-revealing. The story that we were telling was inspiring and wonderfully human." — Dave Carroll