Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Frances Glessner Lee documentary film stills

I'm absolutely in love with going through the stills from our latest documentary film shoot. We use different cameras and lens every time we shoot, so each time, there's something new to see.

I really like how these shots of Frances Glessner Lee's Nutshell Studies of Unexplained Death - Attic - turned out. Some new perspectives will be nice for the new documentary.

Speaking of documentaries, you can get your own Of Dolls & Murder DVD with all the great extras here.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Filming the Frances Glessner Lee documentary film

Here we are filming our forthcoming documentary film on Frances Glessner Lee. We got special permission to film some GoPro camera shots from inside the Nutshell Studies of Unexplained Death. We are so grateful to everyone at the Maryland OCME and everyone at HAPS for their support this past week!

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Nutshell Studies and Frances Glessner Lee documentary

We're headed back to Baltimore next week to film the Nutshells, a few more interviews and show a rough cut for a very special forensic conference.

We can't wait! We even have a new filming technique for the Nutshells. Did I mention that we can't wait?

Monday, June 9, 2014

Frances Glessner Lee & Nutshell Studies Documentary Film Update

The Nutshell Studies of Unexplained Death - Parsonage - Dorothy Dennison. This Nutshell was based on a pretty intriguing case. Only slight details were changed. If you are a good researcher, with some time on your hands, you will be able to find out the answer to this case. But I warn you: once you find out the answer, it takes all the fun and mystery out of it. 

Dorothy Dennison body wasn't as decompose as the meat she purchased from the butcher. Why is that? I watched a FBI agent figure it out in a couple seconds flat. 

Here's a research tip for all you people who want to know what happened to Dorothy Dennison - keep in mind that not all research can be done online. Shocking, I know. Filmmakers, writers and yes even detectives, get offline for the bulk of their research. We don't wait for anyone to hand us the answers, we dig for it. There are 100s of cases that Frances Glessner Lee could have based "Parsonage" on, so don't trust what you read online. (Sadly, young women murdered in a domestic setting is far from rare.)

So, happily get out of your comfort zone and think like someone in the pre-internet era. Having said that, we did discover a case that one Nutshell was based upon through google books and then confirmed it at a library.

I hope I don't come across as preachy, just truthful. And hopefully helpful.

On that note: despite what you've read - Murder She Wrote was NOT based on Frances. 

Know how I know? 

I asked one of the producers of the tv show and he said no, Jessica Fletcher was based on Miss Marple from Agatha Christie's crime novels. 

Again, I asked an actual person that worked on the show instead of believing (and I so wanted to believe!) what I read about Frances being the inspiration for Jessica. So hopefully I've given you some insights into beyond-the-internet research. (I know a few professional researchers who also need to be reminded of some universe truths of research in the internet era.)

Want to know more about Frances Glessner Lee? Read on:

The recent Slate article and the Stuff You Missed in History Class podcast on Frances Glessner Lee has people pretty excited about our documentary film Of Dolls & Murder and our new, forthcoming documentary film and screenplay on Frances Glessner Lee, Her Miniature Life of Crime. 

So here's a run down for the folks that are new to our blog:

  •  We are filmmakers Susan Marks and John Kurtis Dehn
  • If you want to know more about the actual cases the Nutshell Studies were based on, you will have to wait for our film to be finished. I'm not saying we will hand you the answers, you smartypants types (and you know who you are) will be able to figure out a few very important clues. If you want updates on our film, you can like us on facebook
  • We are currently filming the final interviews for the Frances documentary this summer! 
  • We've finished our interviews with Frances Glessner Lee descendents, as well as her carpenter, Alton Mosher and we are, again, thrilled. 
  • We found the missing Nutshell as well as the unfinished ones! 
  • We will be attending the HAPS Conference next month in Baltimore. 
  •  You can only get the DVD extras with John Waters when you buy the DVD of Of Dolls & Murder from our website
  • If you are a producer/agent/manager, we are happy to talk to you about the Frances Glessner Lee screenplay. It's pretty cool if we don't say so ourselves.
  •  Feel free to be in touch with any questions. 

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

McKnight Media Artist Fellows Panel

I'm very excited to be McKnight Fellow! And I'm very excited to be on a panel discussion with my fellow fellows - Todd Cobery and Todd Melby. Come to the Walker Arts Center in Minneapolis, May 29, 2014 and join us!

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Editing Frances Glessner Lee Documentary

Co-producer/Director, John Kurtis Dehn editing Frances Glessnr Lee documentary.
A little peak into our world of editing the Frances Glessner Lee documentary. Currently, we are editing an interview with the grandson of Frances.

Frances Glessner Lee

Filming the Frances Glessner Lee documentary with Frances' great grand kids and an unfinished Nutshell.