MILWAUKEE — A documentary that's in production right now features one of Milwaukee's most iconic streets.
You've probably heard the phrase 'To know where you're going, you need to know where you've been.' And that applies to Brady Street. The iconic street could see some big changes in the near future as the addition of a hotel is being discussed and so is a plan to potentially shift part of the street to pedestrian-only.
In the meantime, a group of UWM film students are working to uncover the past.
Most college students see Brady Street as a destination for nightlife but this group is looking beyond that — using the lens of a camera.
"So far we've filmed about 200 to 300 hours of footage," said Sean Kafer, who leads docUWM, part of UW Milwaukee's Department of Film, Video, Animation and New Genres inside the Peck School of Arts.
This project, a partnership with the Brady Street Business Improvement District, began with research as students explored Brady Street's earliest days.
As the project evolves, students get to try on different roles from director to producer, camera operator, sound engineer, and editor. "I usually run camera — or I'll help with lighting, I'll help with audio too," said Emanuel Zander.
Eleazar Gallegos explained it this way, "It's kind of like a living jigsaw whenever we edit. What we're trying to do is craft a story out of it."
Through video and interviews, the documentary will showcase Brady Street over the years all the way up to the present day. Students interviewed a variety of historians, business owners and longtime residents of the neighborhood.
It's expected to be finished in early 2024 and be submitted to the Milwaukee Film Festival as well as several national and international film festivals.
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