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DULUTH - From Kickstarter to reality, two University of Minnesota, Duluth graduates premiered their year–long work about animal cruelty on Sunday in Duluth.
They said their documentary was also a personal journey.
This is a story about two friends and fellow journalists, Joe didn’t like dogs, and Dave loved all animals.
“Joe and I met at the student newspaper at UMD, I was the editor there and he was the photographer,” David Cowardin said.
Last January, they embarked on a year-long journey.
“I knew before-hand that Joe didn’t like dogs, so I was a bit nervous about going over to his house and asking him to go and film animal cruelty in Alabama,” Cowardin said.
Joe might not have been a dog-lover, but he’s always up for a good adventure, and their month-long trip to Alabama, didn’t skimp on drama.
“We were able to say we’re shocked by the dead dogs on the side of the road. I don’t know if I can eat tonight. Because we had filmed half a dozen in a day. Very close and kind of scarring stuff,” Joe Olivieri said.
“At the very least it’s a public health issue. We found dead animals across the street from elementary schools. No one calls it in,” Cowardin said.
After returning to Duluth last summer, and months of editing they turned the story of their journey into a 53-minute documentary.
“Start the conversation about both animal welfare and the welfare of the rescuers. Putting so much time, money, effort into this,” Olivieri said.
Not only did they complete their documentary, Joe’s personal journey came full circle.
“The film actually follows Joe’s transformation from not liking dogs to liking dogs and adopting one,” Cowardin said.