Award-winning filmmaker Stephanie Soechtig has signed a deal with factual indie Sundog Pictures to develop and series direct new documentary series, City of Refuge.

Soechtig recently exec produced Knock Down the House, Rachel Lears’ 2019 documentary which premiered at the 2019 Sundance Film Festival, winning both the US Documentary Audience Award and the Festival Favourite Award.  

Her directorial roles include firearms film Under the Gun; FED UP, about the obesity epidemic; and Tapped, about the bottled water industry.

City of Refuge will explore life on the edge in one of America’s most dangerous zip codes – Atlanta 30314. Known locally as the Bluff – or “Better Leave, You Effing Fool” – it has some of the highest rates of crime, homelessness, and incarceration in America.  It is also the home of Pastor Bruce Deel’s City of Refuge, an organisation rooted in the principle of radical trust, a revolutionary model which has helped over 20,000 people in Atlanta’s toughest neighbourhood escape sex trafficking homelessness and incarceration.

Johnny Webb, CEO, Sundog Pictures, says: “Bruce’s memoir, Trust First, moved me to tears.  Despite being the visceral story of those living on the edge, it is ultimately moving and full of hope. The access we have secured to Bruce and his work will allow us to combine reconstructions from Trust First, with present day actuality to give a compelling insight into life through the eyes of some of the most disenfranchised people in America.

“We always knew that such a powerful, yet sensitive, project would need a world-class director with a singular voice.  So, I am totally thrilled to welcome Stephanie Soechtig to City of Refuge to craft something truly original and authentic.”

Staff Reporter

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