Update on Documentary

As you know the Capodanno Guild has partnered with the Eternal Word Television Network (EWTN) to develop a new documentary on the life of Father Vincent Capodanno, Servant of God.  Our producer, James Kelty, is an award-winning producer who has created similar documentaries for EWTN; specifically, on Saints Kateri Tekakwitha and Junipero Serra. As we started our project, we planned to conduct numerous interviews with family, friends, fellow seminarians/priests and the Marines who served with him. These interviews are complete and contain amazing testimonies witnessing to Father Capodanno’s virtuous life and heroic death.

A Disappointing Setback Hinders Production

Our initial production plan included a trip to Vietnam where we planned to film on the site where Father Capodanno gave his life while ministering to the Marines. Just two days before departure with our plane tickets, in-country hotels and transportation all purchased, the Vietnam government denied our visas even though we had received earlier written assurance that we were “good to go.”

A Solution is Proposed

Given the loss of the Vietnam trip, we assessed our project and considered various alternative solutions to move forward. James Kelty recommended that we develop reenactments. A reenactment can replace the lost Vietnam segment, but as we considered this, we recognized that these reenactments can help weave the interviews into an exceptional video. They will also add to the length of the video. To move forward, we reopened our talks with EWTN and asked James Kelty to find some potential actors. Both actions are complete.

James has found actors (non-SAG-non-union) to portray Father as a child, teen and adult along with young catholic college ROTC students to play the Marines in the combat scenes. To ensure realism and accuracy, we will have several of the Marines that were with Father on the “Knoll” to be present during this critical reenactment.

The Guild Needs Your Help

This production will be a great tribute to Father Capodanno and will spread the news of this Servant of God to a much wider audience – helping to fulfill a Guild mission. We plan to air the documentary on EWTN on 4 September, the 50th anniversary of Father’s death. DVDs will be sold through both EWTN and the Guild.

As you may have guessed, adding reenactments and actors to the payroll for our project makes it more expensive, almost doubling the cost. While we considered canceling, our sunk costs and the quality of the work to date made this an inappropriate choice. Instead, we decided to move forward and prayerfully count on folks like you to help us finish this important work. EWTN has increased its contribution by $40k. We need your help to raise an additional $60k.