Produced by Black Cat Productions, Inc. and presented and distributed nationally by American Public Television ( APT ), A Mind In Quicksand - Life With Huntington's premieres on WTTW-11 May 3rd at 2 p.m. May is Huntington's Disease Awareness Month.
A Mind In Quicksand - Life With Huntington's, is an award winning feature documentary that examines what it is like to be diagnosed with a life-changing disease that impacts a person's cognitive, emotional and physical abilities in the prime of their life. Kim Lile is one of them.
Huntington's disease is an incurable degenerative neurological disorder that ravages both the mind and body. "Cells in the brain are dying before their time," describes Dr. Kathleen M. Shannon, a neurologist and Huntington's disease specialist at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago.
Approximately 30,000 Americans have been diagnosed with Huntington's disease, and thousands more are at risk. The disease affects movement, disrupting one's ability to control behavior, and affects mood and emotions, disrupting memory and thought processes.
In A Mind In Quicksand, Kim explores her own family history and interviews her mother and family members to learn more about the root cause of her disease. She also interviews doctors, researchers, caregivers, and fellow Huntington's sufferers to learn about the causes, symptoms, and the impact of Huntington's.
Kim boldly turns the camera on herself to show the impacts of the illness, offering a raw and genuine first-hand look of Huntington's from the inside.
About the Subject
After studying photography at Columbia College in Chicago, Kim Lile spent much of the 1980s and 1990s traveling in South America and Africa. From 1984 to 1999, she worked as a Script Supervisor on various commercial films such as Michael, directed by Nora Ephron, and White Boyz, directed by Marl Levin & featuring Snoop Dogg. In 2003, she was employed shooting pet portraits, and in 2004 an 2005 she did freelance photography for Lake, a Michigan vacation monthly. From 2004 to the present she has worked as a personal assistant, a private chef and event planner.
About the Filmmakers
Sharon Zurek is the owner of Black Cat Productions in Chicago and enjoys working on independent features and social-issue documentaries. She has an extensive background in film and video production with more than thirty years of experience. She edited and co-produced the lesbian love story, Hannah Free, starring Sharon Gless and written by Claudia Allen. As a film editor, she has collaborated with many talented Chicago filmmakers on such award winning films as The Trouble with Dee Dee, Bad City ( aka Dirty Work ), Stray Dogs, Flying, Won Ton, The Sisterhood of Night to name a few. She has also worked as Post Production Supervisor on Ca$h, Drunkboat and The Merry Gentleman, the directorial debut for actor Michael Keaton. As a college classmate of Kim's, she is proud to have collaborated with her on A Mind in Quicksand Life with Huntington's.
After receiving her B.A. in American History from Boston University, Jessie V. Ewing took classes at Maine Photographic Workshops in Camden, Maine, as well as master classes with Mary Ellen Mark and Bill Owens. She worked as a staff photographer on both The Illinois Times, a downstate alterative weekly and The Quad City Times, a mid-size daily, based in Davenport, Iowa. She also did freelance photography for The Chicago Reader, The Chicago Tribune, The Washington Post & trade & professional magazines including Inland Steel and American Planning. Jessie taught photography: at The Art Farm Foundation summer camp for poor Quad City children and The McCormick Boys & Girls Club of Chicago. For this work she received an Illinois Arts Council Grant. From there she went on to take a Masters in Special Education from the University of Illinois, after which she worked in Special Ed in the Chicago Public Schools for eight years.
Produced by Black Cat Productions, Inc.
Director Kim Lile
Producer Sharon Zurek
Executive Producer Jessie V. Ewing
Editors Sharon Zurek and Justine Gendron
Cinematographers Chris Peppey and Jessie V. Ewing
May is Huntington's Disease Awareness Month. The film will broadcast on public television stations nationwide beginning May 1, 2015 ( check local listings ).