"Viva Cuba ! " TM
"Viva Cuba " is an American filmmaker's adventure and search for the real story, captured during five years of travel across 4000 miles and many lifetimes of the island Cuba!
In the 1950's Cuba was the Las Vegas in the sunny Caribbean and one of the most popular tourist destinations. It was a tropical island escape with unparalleled opportunities for sunshine, gambling, drinking and sex.
Only 90 miles from Florida, it beckoned visitors with forbidden pleasures and exotic sights and sounds. Soon after Castros revolution in 1959 , the U.S. imposed economic sanctions, making Cuba off-limits to most Americans . During that time, Cuba underwent one of the most radical social experiments in history that against all odds continues today along with its leader.
The "Viva Cuba" documentary is the first comprehensive look at life in Cuba in nearly half a Century.
"Viva Cuba" is a timely and intensely personal documentary about what it's like to travel and fit into Cuban society; to work , live with the locals, eat and experience a unique island. It is a rare look at the diverse Cuban culture and its people.
Until now, information about Cuba has been largely limited to the political clashes, ideological differences and mistrust reported by the news media. It is time to tell the real story of the wonderful Cuban people and their unique culture.
This documentary follows the struggles, triumphs, aspirations and accomplishments of many Cubans, ordinary and not so ordinary. It's the real story of Cuba, told mainly by Cubans, a highly patriotic, resourceful, fun-loving people that embrace life and still laugh in spite of the lack of nearly everything because of the American trade embargo. The documentary takes the viewer to a place seemingly back in time to when life was a lot slower.
After 5 years of production with the help of trusted associates, professionals and colleagues in Cuba and the U.S., the producer has captured over 240 hours of video footage of Cuba and Cubans. Viewers will meet people who are doctors to those who work in the state run factories or farms. There are also those who have experienced capitalism running small, private businesses.
The film captures the romantics and the hustlers in the gritty city streets, to the world class performers in bars and clubs to those Cubans in respite from the everyday struggle while living along the beaches and in the beautiful countryside. Video also includes insights by a few of the nearly 120,000 American visitors each year doing research, humanitarian aid, sports and travel in Cuba.
Sailing to Cuba in a small boat and traveling around Cuba like a local, the producer and his
"Viva Cuba" team experiences everything that nature and travel can fling at them, all happening
while capturing video of a story that at times seems larger than life. The producers love of Cuba
and the Cuban people and the ensuing adventures over the years makes for a riveting tale.
This beautifully photographed program is highly entertaining and informative. It is a fast-
moving narrative documentary planned for a six hour TV mini-series for U.S. and International distribution followed by VHS/DVD release with an extended "Directors Cut" version for home video and educational institutions. Production is scheduled for release in 2010.
The documentary project is an independent production by Paul Prewitt, producer/director and acclaimed cameraman based in Daytona Beach, Florida. He has an impressive career, reputation and list of clients and is know for delivering sensational photography, film footage and programming for syndication and Cable TV. His work has been nominated 3 times for Emmy awards with his documentary "Everyone Rides" winning an AMA award. He is a photographer, 16mm cinematographer and videographer who has traveled the world for 25 years capturing stories for films and television.
During 2001-2004, Prewitt organized the sporting event “Gulf Stream Challenge” intent on capturing the women’s World record for distance in team paddle boarding. The events were sponsored with invitations from Marina Hemmingway Club Nautico Yacht Club, an organization that believes exchange between Cuban and American athletes is beneficial for both countries. The four woman team finally succeeded in setting the record, making the 112 mile crossing from Havana to Key West in 28 hours. The expeditions are a part of the documentary as it follows the American athletes around Cuba, during a “Santeria” religious ceremony, through lightning storms and the treacherous trips across the shark filled Gulf Stream.
When asked why a project on Cuba, Prewitt responds, “Growing up in Florida during the Cuban missile crisis and after working as a teenager for Cuban restaurant owner, Julian Lopez, I always wanted to visit the Island. After I got there and had a chance met the real Cubans I realized there
was so much life and soul to the people and their culture. I wanted to capture all aspects of their fascinating culture and reveal their unique story to others. I have traveled around the World but have never met such a warm friendly people. Cubans are full of life, proud and happy and they truly love being with Americans!
The audience of this documentary will be anyone with an interest in travel, adventure and exotic culture featuring world class music and living history. The film includes great story telling about making the best of life in a forbidden island at America's doorstep.
Subjects being captured: (not in order of appearance)
Artists, sculptors, painters, from all mediums
Musicians, singers, bands of all types, history, Industry
Authors/writers (fiction and non-fiction), journalists, poets
Photographers, Film/TV Producers
Dancers, dancing of all types, theaters, clubs, regional/local customs
Craftsmen, occupations of all types
Religions, churches, ceremonies of all types
Cultural Events, Holidays, Weddings, Festivals
Educational Institutes, Schools, Universities, Colleges
Medical Institutes, hospitals, mental health, professions, native/natural healing
Parapsychology, research, studies,
Architectural History, Hotels, old and new construction, rebuilding of Havana
Automobiles, transportation of all types
Tourism Industry, on all subjects/activities
Trade (International) New U.S. policies
Liquor/Tobacco industry, farming, manufacturing
Sports & athletes, baseball, soccer, (all types, Olympic, individual and group)
Agriculture/Farming of all types
Native foods, cooking, restaurants, customs
Fishing industry, Seafood's, Sport-fishing, boat-building
Ecotourism Industry, past present and future, Climbing, Hiking, Horseback
Geographic features/ Ecology, caves, mountains, beaches, islands, lakes, rivers
Coastlines, scuba diving, reefs, ship-wrecks/archeology
Cuban organizations, U.S. based (interviews)
U.S. officials, Senators, Presidents (interviews), Past U.S. ties & personalities
Travel/Studies by U.S. based Universities, professors & students (interviews)
Humanitarian efforts, organizations, activities, importance, history, future
History (overview), Native peoples, languages, dialects
Cuban Government (overview), interviews, opinions, policies, future,
Fidel Castro Story, utilizing interviews and news reels