In his latest documentary, “Bisbee ’17,” documentarian Robert Greene lands in the titular tiny town in advance of the upcoming centennial of the “Bisbee Deportation,” when nearly 1,500 striking miners (most of them Eastern European and Mexican immigrants) were rounded up by their own friends and neighbors, herded onto cattle cars, and abandoned in the middle of nowhere. The heinous act has haunted the town in the decades since, and Greene’s film forces the residents of Bisbee to grapple with it in timely, haunting terms.
Today, July 12, is the 101st anniversary of the deportation, and in honor of that, Greene has released a new series of short films chronicling other aspects of Bisbee — and its people — that didn’t make it into his final cut. First up: an examination of some of the more mystical elements of the tiny town.
Of this first short — one of six in a series — Greene writes, “The story of the Bisbee Deportation — really the story of Bisbee itself — is way too big for a single film. We’ve always felt that the feature film was just part of an overall project and these shorts allow us to explore some of the haunted stories and wonderful people that didn’t make it in. I want viewers to get a real sense of this magical, strange place and these films allow us do that in a really great way.”
He added, “From never-before-heard stories from women’s perspectives on the deportation to ghost stories to comic tales of burning B’s to Robert Houston, the author of the novel ‘Bisbee ‘17,’ illuminating aspects of Sheriff Harry Wheeler’s character, these six short films bring viewers into this charming town with a dark secret in its belly.”
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Check out our exclusive new short from Greene below.
You can also check out IndieWire’s exclusive trailer and poster for “Bisbee ’17” right here. The film will open on September 5 at NYC’s own Film Forum, before rolling out nationally.