Following the critical and popular success of the documentary game Fort McMoney, the film “Fort McMoney : Vote for Jim Rogers” returns to Fort McMurray, Alberta, the third largest oil reserve in the world, and one of Canada’s war treasures. With one obsession recurring in the director’s work for three years now : is democracy soluble in oil ?
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March 2014. Sixth or seventh shoot, I don’t even remember. Jim Rogers said that we could come by and see him again whenever we wanted. He had some work to do on the house ; some drain that was clogged again because of the new freeway being built, or something like that.
We arrived without much notice – and Jim opened the door to us. He then opened his arms, and finally, his world. He used to be a trapper, and watched his little town of Fort McMurray become what it is today : a modern version of the gold rush, and as murky and dark as oil.
In town, Jim is the last one to hold out. He is the only one who was born here – this much he knows. Yet everyone, or nearly everyone regards him as a pleasant nutcase. Sure, Jim Rogers is rough around the edges, which is what makes him so fascinating and rich in character. Jim is an ingenious jester – and he laughs likes one too !
We stayed with him for three days. The idea was to go back into town, to the scene of the crime (and the setting of the game) to tell the utopic story of direct democracy we tried to set up with the web experience.
We shot for three days and we’re going to try what we didn’t do during our earlier trips : something like an immersive voyage, armed with a camera and one mission on our minds. Something that says something else about Fort McMurray besides what Fort McMurray has already shown : A permanent round trip between the film and the game, the dollars and those forgotten, and the virtual world and reality.
- Festival du Nouveau Cinéma (Montréal)
- Festival International des Productions Audiovisuels (Biarritz, France)
- Festival International du Film d’Environnement (Paris)
- Festival International du Grand Reportage d’Actualité (Le Touquet, France), section Autrement Vu.
- CBC Doc Channel (jan, 29th 2015)
- Arte (Spring 2015)
- Radio Canada (2015)
Fort McMoney : vote Rogers mayor
A film by David Dufresne
Shot in the first person, we meet Jim Rogers in the film, a trapper, a town native, and an unsuccessful candidate in the last municipal election watching his tiny town, Fort McMurray turn into what it is today : a modern version of the gold rush, and as murky and dark as oil.
The film is much more than the linear version of the web experience. “Fort McMoney : Vote for Jim Rogers” is actually its sequel, its mirror and a reflection of democracy in ruins. It’s also a film that seeks to combine both medias… once and for all.
A TOXA / ONF production in association with ARTE France.
Director of photography Philippe Brault
Photographer and cinematographer, member of Agence VU’, he co-directed with David Dufresne the web-documentary Prison Valley for which they won many prizes, of which the World Press Photo multimedia contest.