Kenny Brown - Director/Producer
I shot Jason taking off from the Greenwich Meridian Line in 1994 and I shot him coming back 13 years later. There was no great plan for what happened in between those dates; we just shot what we thought was interesting.
Near the end of the trip, as Jason was crossing back over the Channel to England, I realized how far we had all come. I was shooting the pedal boat being wrestled into the sea by some happy random strangers. The support boat had nowhere to dock, so I tossed all my camera gear into a dry bag and, without really thinking about it, swam into the water fully clothed to meet the boat. I remember the look on the face of a British journalist who had shown up -- utter incomprehension.
I hope this film begins to explain why the expedition was worth following.
Kenny Brown was raised in Scotland. He studied cinematography at the American Film Institute and lives in Los Angeles. While making this film he was also a freelance war cameraman for the BBC, working in Kosovo, Chechnya, Iraq and Afghanistan. Other documentary work includes SALVATION MOUNTAIN, winner of the Big Sky Award from the Big Sky Documentary Festival, and Steadicam for OPERATION HOMECOMING (Oscar-nominee -- Best Documentary Feature).
This is his first feature as a director.
I was drawn to THE EXPEDITION from the moment I saw a clip of Lewis gamely pedaling his madcap craft down the Thames. Any undertaking so noble and so silly was of immediate interest. As I learned of the trip’s scope and scale and the new task at hand, I quickly offered my services to Kenny with the intent to shape this astonishing raft of material into a single cinematic journey.
I greatly enjoyed the innate pace of a human-powered expedition and the very British reserve of its hero, and attempted to distill a lifetime’s worth of footage into a visceral, two-hour experience. For me, THE EXPEDITION is a strange and pressing tale of human will, throughout which I was inspired both by Jason’s literal presence onscreen and by Kenny’s constant soldiering to realize his life’s work. The tenacity and resolve of these two men are truly the human power that brought this journey to life. Enjoy the trip.
A native of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Todd earned an MFA in Directing at the American Film Institute and now lives in Los Angeles. His own narrative work has been honored with several prestigious awards, including Best Short at the 2005 Hollywood Film Festival for AUTOMATION. This is his first feature-length effort as an editor and sound designer.
The musical concept for THE EXPEDITION was to produce intimate music on an epic scale. Using instrumentation that evoked the film’s exotic locations and an organic, poly-rhythmic palette that “de-evolved” over time, I attempted to give each leg of the journey its own signature sound but imply a perpetual unity.
Mark Schulz is a film composer based in Los Angeles. Originally from Winnipeg, Canada, Mark made his debut in the music world as the guitarist for Public Image Ltd., co-writing several songs on the seminal ALBUM. Several bands later, Mark gave up life on the road for life in the studio, and began to create original music for feature films, television, commercials, and multimedia. You can hear more of his work and download some of the soundtrack from THE EXPEDITION here.