Wednesday, March 09, 2011

World Premiere!

The world premiere of The Day Carl Sandburg Died documentary film has been set for RiverRun International Film Festival in Winston Salem, North Carolina, April 15,16,17, 2011.

Carl Sandburg died in July of 1967, but director Paul Bonesteel finds his life story and his creative legacy as relevant and provocative as it was in 1916 when his "Chicago Poems" changed American poetry. “Labor unrest, global wars, socialism, immigration and race issues… this was the subject matter that fueled Sandburg for much of his poetry and writing that shocked the world.” comments Bonesteel. “The intensity of his work was over simplified later in his life. He was both an anarchist and a deeply patriotic American.”

The Day Carl Sandburg Died was more than six years in the making with a cast of more than twenty notable scholars, performers and Sandburg family members. Sandburg’s daughter Helga Sandburg Crile, Pete Seeger, Norman Corwin and the late Studs Terkel contribute to the film along with contemporary poets Marc Smith, Ted Kooser and others. Also contributing significantly to the film is Sandburg Biographer and Winston Salem resident Penelope Niven.

Both Director Bonesteel and Niven will be present at the RiverRun screenings for Q&A. Tickets are available at


Merrie said...


Will there be a time when I can buy a DVD of this?

paulbonesteel said...

Yes indeed. We're hoping that the DVD will be ready for distribution sometime this summer, but there are a number of details to work out with regards to distribution. Stay in touch and check in here at the blog for more news.

Thanks much.

David Roknich said...

I am in Galesburg, where the NEA is funding a BIG READ of Edgar Allan Poe that

coincides not only with the premiere of your film, but with the local celebration

of"Sandburg Days", April 14 -16.

Interesting and sad that your sensitive work will be premiered during the same

timeframe, while there is nothing but absolute ignorance in this, the town where Carl

Sandburg was born.

No reading of his work are scheduled. Free copies of books by Edgar Allan Poe have

been distributed for the past month.

It is a disgrace. Although I eagerly await the opportunity to see your film.
It is very unlikely that will be in Galesburg, which since 1928 has developed more as a

child of Omer Custer the Oligarch, than Carl Sandburg the Poet.

Custer once owned the entire town, including its politicians, and his descendants own

enough of it today to assert control here and well into Iowa. Sandburg had better

things to do, and did them where his actions would not be impeded by a genuine fascist

who spit when he heard the name "Rooselvelt".

I really am eager to see your movie. It is unlikely that will be in Galesburg. If it does

come here, lets hope a revolution soon follows.

I'm playing Sandburg's poetry continuously on my streaming radio station I set up here.
Some of his poems are read by people who live here. What funding has come to this

town has been usurped by scoundrels. So be it.

My event is here,

and I pursue it although I am broke as a hobo.

David Roknich