“Eating Alabama” is a documentary follows filmmaker Andrew Grace and his wife on a yearlong journey through eating only locally grown food. The movie is making its rounds on the film festival circuit having shown at the South by Southwest Festival in Texas and most recently at the Sidewalk Film Festival in Birmingham. Now it’s set to show in Grace's backyard Sunday at the Bama Theate in Tuscaloosa. He says while making the film the story became more about where our food comes from.
“We have a long standing tradition of being able to feed ourselves that really has only gone away in the last 60 or 70 years,” says Grace. “So I think the film meditates a little bit on that how did we turn everything around and so I think there a lot of folks that see the movie that get interested in thinking about where their food comes from.”
Grace says “Eating Alabama” is the most personal he’s gotten in any of his documentaries, and one family member wasn’t sure people would be all that interested in it.
“When my grandmother first saw it she said well I like but I don’t think anybody else is going to like it because it’s about us.”
But Grace says the response has been above and beyond what he expected.
"It's been great to see the reaction because I think a lot of people can identify with my story they felt sort of connected to the land from a generation or two ago but then really lost that connection or are now trying to figure out what does it mean to not know where any of your food comes from; to not really have a connection to place anymore which is what I think a lot of the film is about."
“Eating Alabama” screens at The Bama Theatre in Tuscaloosa on Sunday at 7:30 PM. The film will also be aired statewide on Alabama Public Television September 23rd and will be shown nationwide on public television next summer.
Transcript of Ryan's conversation with Andy Grace...
(Grace): Well it seemed to be appreciative of the film a lot of folks aren’t really getting interested in where their food comes from and have for a number of years now. It’s a little bit of a different story in the Deep South. We might have not embrace farmers markets and local sustainable agriculture quite a quickly as other regions of the country but, we have a long standing tradition of being able to feed ourselves that really has only gone away in the last 60 to 70 years. I think the film meditates a little bit on that how did we, how did we turn that around. So I think there are a lot of folks that see the movie that get interested in thinking about where their food comes from and that’s been a really great response.
(Vasquez): Is there a longer schedule to promoting this? What’s after, I guess it comes to Tuscaloosa, this coming weekend. What’s next for it then?
(Grace): Well actually on Saturday night it will play in, outside of Miami, at a festival down there so I’m gonna fly to Miami and then fly back here for the screening on Sunday. But then it’s playing in Santa Fe,