Stephen Sapienza, for the Pulitzer Center
What were some of the technical and logistical limitations concerned with filming in Gorongosa?
Good question. There weren't any major technical or logistical limitations. On the technical side, we ran all our equipment on battery power. There was only a limited amount of electricity at the park everyday – so we had to make sure that we recharged the batteries of our equipment when the power was on. As for logistics, I guess not dropping the camera gear into the water while crossing the river to the village of Vinho. Also, driving in Mozambique was pretty rough on the rural roads – and they drive on the other side of the road there -- so it took some getting used to -- especially using the stick shift – but then again that was kinda fun.
Considering you have such a huge story to tell in such a small amount of time, how do you decide which video clips to use? Are photos for printed articles picked through the same process, or are different things considered when choosing photos?
Sorry - I can't help with the photo selection question – that's out of my job description - what I mean is I wasn't involved in that aspect of the project.
As for tackling a huge story with a little amount of time -- we obviously had to make tough choices about what to include and what to leave out. I think we were really trying to just give viewers a feel for some of the impending changes and issues at the park. With such a short video you've got to keep things simple. So rather than get into Greg Carr's background we chose to focus on Carr's vision for the park, the history of the park, and how the local communities are reacting to the changes at the park. So for such a short piece we had to weigh the benefits of devoting too much time on Carr's background versus the communities and lives that will be impacted by his donations. Obviously, there is a lot more to this story and I hope we get an opportunity to present the story in a longer format in the future.
In the video that we recently watched about the situation in Mozambique, many topics and stories intrigued me, while other things left me with questions. Since the project is relying so heavily on Carr's donations, why did you decide to not include more information about Carr's background in the video?
This is a question similar to the one above – please refer to the answer above – thanks. I will add that the video was designed to compliment Stephanie's print article on Gorongosa – so she gets into more of Carr's interesting background and philanthropic endeavors in her Smithsonian Magazine article – check it out.
In the video clip on Mozambique, why did you choose to only portray one village?
There were actually two separate villages in the video – maybe identifying both villages on screen would have made this more evident – my apologies. The first village is one directly benefiting from the park – it just received a new school and health clinic paid for and built by the park. The second community hasn't received any benefits from the park as of yet. So we felt it was important to show the relations between the park and the two different communities.
--- Thank you all for your interest