We have stories in the works from contributors Larissa Branin, Paul Pfotenhauer, and Roxanne Makasdjian. Stay tuned for more information and be sure to check out the State of Minds archives.
“The Devil’s Breath” was nominated for Best Documentary (Topical) but alas, the winner was Crossfire: Water, Power, and Politics
Still, we were proud to be nominees!
UCSD-TV: What sparked your interest in Quarry Falls?
Shannon Bradley: I heard a story about the San Diego River Park Foundation getting a donation of 17 acres right on the river in Mission Valley and I couldn’t believe it. How in the world does a non-profit get a gift like that? Land that was zoned for a 30-story hotel? So that’s where it started. Then I found out the landowners also owned the 230-acre quarry across Friars Road that was slated for development. And when I looked at the plans for the site, I was impressed by what they wanted to do there. So that became our story: how the landowners would go about building support for their plan to turn the quarry into a mixed-use development and in the process, donating the 17 acres to the River Park Foundation.
UCSD-TV: When you hear the words “sand and gravel mine,” a livable space is not
usually what comes to mind. What makes this site ideal for development?
SB: Because the quarry site is in the exact center of San Diego! Literally the heart of Mission Valley! It’s close to everything. And the whole mantra of smart growth is to reduce the distance people must travel between home, work, school, and recreation…
UCSD-TV: What was your role as executive producer?
Shannon Bradley: Laura Castaneda brought this wonderful story to UCSD-TV and I had the privilege of providing a second pair of eyes to the script and helping her shape it for our audience.
UCSD-TV: Why did you choose the documentary format to tell this story?
SB: Because Laura had this amazing footage of the people who actually lived through this tragedy, some having been burned themselves and others who had lost loved ones in the firestorm. Her interviews with those who were directly affected presented the story in a much more compelling way than had she just recounted to camera what she had learned in her reporting…