Archive for Documentaries

Jul
02

Solar Town USA Media Coverage

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Apr
13

Breaking the Curse program streaming online

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The Gracie Award winning PBS documentary is available to view here:

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Feb
01

Solar Town USA article on Oprah.com

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Oct
12

Foreclosure Inc Media Coverage

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Oct
02

Foreclosure Inc Trailer

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Foreclosure Inc. Trailer from Kos Films on Vimeo.

Inside the high-stakes cut-throat world of Arizona foreclosure brokers!

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Oct
02

REALITY SERIES FORECLOSURE, INC. COMPLETES FILMING IN ARIZONA

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Award-Winning Director Brian Kosisky and Producer Joy Kosisky create Reality Program Centered On the Foreclosure Crisis in America

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Kos Films has completed principal photography of the first season of Foreclosure, Inc., the first television documentary series to explore the foreclosure crisis in America. The program is presented as a 10-episode series set in Phoenix, the fifth most populous state in the U.S., and Maricopa County, with the most foreclosures of all counties in the U.S. The series will air on cable television in 2010. 2008 Gracie Award-winning director Brian Kosisky serves as Executive Producer.
Foreclosure, Inc. takes reality television viewers on a roller-coaster ride into the wild world of foreclosure investing. For over two months, Kosisky’s crew was granted exclusive, unprecedented access to the inner workings of the top foreclosure broker in Arizona (PostedProperties.com), and assembled in various sites around Phoenix, including Maricopa and Pinal counties. Viewers meet and become intimately acquainted with the investors, brokers, house-drivers, auctioneers, protesters, and tenants who come together under the most hopeless and desperate of circumstances, resulting in the most emotional and compelling real-life drama seen on television to date.
The stakes are high as homeowners face crushed dreams, and personal and professional failures, as investors and brokers attempt to make the best of a collapsed market. Kos Films captures the unfolding events, placing an emphasis on the personalities involved and the conflicts that arise between the characters.

Kos Films, LLC is a private production company formed by filmmaker Brian Kosisky who utilizes high definition digital filmmaking to create compelling content with a focus on telling each story with maximum emotional impact. Kosisky’s national Emmy, Dupont Gracie, and Peabody Award-winning team of filmmakers produces programming for national television networks, focusing on hour-long documentaries. His most recent film, Solar Town USA, will air in 2010, and his earlier film, Breaking the Curse, aired on PBS and received the 2008 Gracie Award for Outstanding Documentary. Before creating Kos Films, Kosisky served as senior producer and national news editor for CNN, where he produced and edited feature stories and special projects for the network. Seen by millions of television viewers around the world, Kosisky’s work has captured some of the most important and compelling news events of the last decade.

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Jun
29

Solar Town USA Clips

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Clips of the documentary can be seen here.

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Jun
29

“Solar Town USA” to air across Europe and Asia

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Solar Town USA, the ambitious follow-up to the Gracie Award-winning documentary, “Breaking the Curse” has been picked up by international distributor Electric Sky in London to air across Europe and Asia.  ”Solar Town USA” tells the story of America’s first solar town and how it has shaped the alternative energy ideas and policies of today.  It was produced and directed by Brian Kosisky and co-produced by Joy Kosisky and Daryn Kagan.

The inspiring story of a small town 30 years ahead of its time.

A community ravaged by 100 years of flooding. Dreams built, rebuilt, then washed away.

See what the people of Soldiers Grove, Wisconsin did in the face of adversity and how their bold innovation and will to survive as a community turned them into America’s first solar town.

Three decades after their landmark move, we’ll revisit Soldiers Grove and its residents for a look at what’s worked, what hasn’t and how we can use the lessons they’ve learned to build a more sustainable future.

* * *

You’ll meet Bill Becker, a military veteran and journalist who, after covering the war in Vietnam,becker sought solace in the picturesque and simple town of Soldiers Grove. He was not prepared for the threat of the nearby Kickapoo River.

For years, the river was the source of drinking water, farm irrigation and transportation. But it was also temperamental, and summer storms brought continued devastation.

Already skeptical of the Army Corps of Engineers’ repeated attempts to fix the situation with levees and dams, Becker was not convinced that trying to contain the river was a realistic solution.

One day while in casual conversation, a fellow resident joked to Becker that they should just “pick this town up and move it out of here.” After another monstrous flood in 1978, that’s exactly what the residents of Soldiers Grove set out to do, but with a twist…

hirschTom Hirsch, an architect fresh out of college, was asked to lead the relocation study and not only rebuild the town from scratch, but also make it energy independent. First, residents had to move out of the flood plain and onto higher ground. Then, a landmark ordinance was instituted that required all new buildings get at least half of their heating energy from solar sources. It was a risky undertaking.

“Nobody had done this before that we knew of,” said Hirsch. “We were making it up as we went.” What they made was revolutionary – a “solar attic” that used solar panels on a building’s roof to draw in the sun’s heat and trap it above, where a series of vents carried the warm air throughout the building.

dworshacksThe Dworshack family, originally from the suburbs of Milwaukee, moved to Soldiers Grove in 2004 and took sustainable living a step further. With no connection to power or plumbing, they currently live off solar energy, a wood stove and their own garden. They say they aren’t trying to change the world, they’re just doing what they can to make a difference.

Bill Becker, the small-town journalist who spearheaded the relocation of Soldiers Grove, changed careers and worked for the Department of Energy, helping other towns faced with similar problems. He has been from Illinois to Missouri, to Thailand and back to New Orleans, where he helped introduce the concept of solar energy after the devastation wrought by Hurricane Katrina.

Becker helped develop a Department of Energy program that moved innovations in solar technology from the lab to the marketplace; innovations that are creating the solar-powered homes of today.

coteCalifornia environmental activist Chris Cote was excited by the innovations in solar technology, but frustrated in the lack of implementation by the homebuilders in his community– so Chris became a homebuilder himself!  He now builds communities of houses powered by the sun.

And the newest solar towns– they’re being built by college students!  Every two years, the Department of Energy turns the National Mall in Washington, DC into a showcase of solar powered homes created by Universities across the world.decathlon

Now, the lessons of Soldiers Grove are being used to help another small Mid-western town.  Greensburg Kansas was wiped out by an EF5 tornado in May 2007.  As residents rebuild, they are transforming their town into a solar and wind-powered tourist destination.

Solar Town USA’s film crew had exclusive access to the 2007 State of Wisconsin-sponsored evaluation of Soldiers Grove’s solar systems and its attempts to bring the systems up to date. The film offers an honest assessment of the first solar town in the nation, what worked, what didn’t, and those people trying to advance solar today. It is an entertaining, emotionally engaging, and educational story that is never preachy or political in tone.

With its traditional storytelling format and contemporary and stylistic visuals, Solar Town USA shows what’s possible when people work together against adversity. Expect many twists and surprises…and lessons for the future solar towns of the world.


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Breaking the Curse with Daryn Kagan, a film by Brian Kosisky, has taken the 2008 Gracie Award for Outstanding Documentary – Long Format. The film aired on PBS stations across the U.S. in 2007, and was directed by Kosisky and co-produced and narrated by Daryn Kagan. Breaking the Curse was named among the recipients of the 33rd Annual Gracie Awards, which recognize exemplary programming created for women and about women.

Filmed on location in India and in the United States, Breaking the Curse explores the story of American Becky Douglas as she ventured from the suburbs of Atlanta to the streets of India in her fight for the health, education, and lives of people living with leprosy. Douglas’ goal of giving temporary care to people in leprosy colonies unfolds into an ambitious plan to build schools, offer complete health care and education, and eventually eliminate the need of these colonies in India.

This film is the very first television documentary Kosisky and Kagan have collaborated on since they left CNN, where Kosisky most recently served as a senior news producer, and Kagan served as a news anchor and correspondent.  Kosisky and Kagan’s next project, SOLAR TOWN USA, is a film about the legacy of America’s very first solar town, and the remarkable story of how one American town survived a series of devastating flood which led to the creation of the very first solar village in the United States.

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Former CNN anchor Daryn Kagan’s well received documentary film by Producers Brian and Joy Kosisky for Kos Films begins its HDTV/DTV run in 80% of PBS markets. Brian Kosisky, the former CNN senior news producer, is an up and coming filmmaker who utilizes high definition digital filmmaking to create compelling content with a focus on telling each story with maximum emotional impact. This film marks Daryn Kagan’s return to presenting news on television since she left CNN in late 2006 after 12 years to create the award winning www.DarynKagan.com, an online inspirational community that features a daily Web cast of news stories that, “Show the World What’s Possible.” DarynKagan.com has become a daily destination for thousands of Internet users who seek hopeful news stories that inspire.


Washington, D.C. (PRWEB) September 17, 2007 — “Breaking the Curse with Daryn Kagan”, a news documentary by executive producer Brian Kosisky for Kos Films is now available in both High-Definition and Digital formats exclusively to PBS viewers across the U.S. Daryn Kagan, former CNN anchor and reporter, and creator and host of the award winning DarynKagan.com serves as co-producer and narrator of the film.

PBS Stations to present the film tonight during Prime Time include WNET in New York; WYIN in Chicago; WYBE in Philadelphia; KQED in San Francisco; WGBH in Boston; and WETA in Washington, D.C.; WTVS in Detroit; KAET in Phoenix; KCTS in Seattle; KABW in Minneapolis; WVIZ in Cleveland; KRMA in Denver; KETC in St. Louis; WQED in Pittsburgh; KOPB in Portland; and WFYI in Indianapolis.


The film’s website,
www.breakingtheCurse.tv provides a complete schedule of all run dates and stations where the documentary will air, as well as excerpts from the film.

Filmed on location in India, among other countries, Breaking the Curse with Daryn Kagan explores the story of American wife and mother Becky Douglas, as she ventures from the suburbs of Atlanta to the streets of India in her fight for the health, education, and lives of people living with leprosy after the sudden death of her daughter. Along the way, Douglas collaborates with the grown daughter of a former Indian president, and her goal of giving temporary care to people in leprosy colonies unfolds into an ambitious plan to build schools, offer complete health care and education, and eventually eliminate the need of these colonies in India.

“Becky Douglas’ story is one of hope, and I’m thrilled PBS viewers will have the opportunity to watch “Breaking the Curse” in HDTV this month,” said Kosisky.

KOS FILMS, LLC is a private production company formed by filmmaker Brian Kosisky who utilizes high definition digital filmmaking to create compelling content with a focus on telling each story with maximum emotional impact. Kosisky’s national Emmy, DuPont and Peabody Award-winning team of journalists produce programming for national television networks, focusing on hour-long documentaries. His most recent film, Breaking the Curse with Daryn Kagan, is currently airing on PBS stations across the country. Before creating KOS FILMS, Kosisky served as a senior producer and news editor for CNN, where he produced and edited feature stories and numerous special projects for the network. Seen by millions of television viewers in more than 212 countries and territories around the world, Kosisky’s work has captured some of the most important and compelling news events of the last decade. Before joining CNN, Kosisky’s work spanned from producing news documentaries, to commercials for national advertisers, to editing and supervising post-production for national cable and broadcast television programs on networks, including HGTV and the Travel Channel.

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