John Pa and Matt Seilback inspired to make film about racism in St. Louis

4:08 PM, Apr 12, 2012   |    comments
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By Art Holliday

St. Louis (KSDK) - How we get along is often complicated by our differences. Like many cities, St. Louis has more ethnic diversity than any time in its history, diversity which isn't always understood, or respected.

Two local filmmakers hope their film will start a community dialogue about a difficult subject: race.

"We were watching a BBC video, the whole Delmar great divide," said filmmaker John Pa.

And that's how one film inspired another.

A British documentary about segregation on opposite sides of Delmar Boulevard, inspired St. Louis filmmakers Pa and Matt Seilback to create their own short film: "Racism in St. Louis."

"If there's an issue that is this heavy. It should be talked about somehow. We didn't know how to do it. We didn't have a perfect solution," said Pa.

Seilback and Pa say they know they don't have the answer to racism in St. Louis, but they're not afraid to search for an answer, by creating a film, by starting a dialogue, by lighting a fire.

"And that's what excites us, as filmmakers, is how do you put something out there and it just lights on fire," said Seilback. "We went to different sections of St. Louis where we knew we would get different ethnicities."

"To share a message, to share a mission, to share a dream," said Pa.

It's the dreamers among us who often lead the way. Pa and Seilback have the dreamers disease, dreaming of a St. Louis that's inclusive instead of divided.

"That's the reason we're in film. We want to inspire change and we want to inspire it on a large scale," said Seilback.

Seilback and Pa plan to do a series of films to get people talking.



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