Tuesday, 23 June 2009
"Golden Gate Bridge officials are seething that a moviemaker who told them he was working on a "day in the life" project about the landmark was, in fact, capturing people on film as they jumped to their deaths.
Eric Steel initially told officials he planned to spend a year filming the "powerful and spectacular interaction between the monument and nature" and that his work was to be the first in a series of documentaries about national monuments such as the St. Louis Arch and the Statue of Liberty. That's how he got the Golden Gate National Recreation Area's permission to set up cameras on parkland overlooking Fort Point.
Now, however, Steel has revealed in an e-mail to bridge officials that the cameras -- which were operating almost continuously during daylight hours for all of 2004 -- filmed most of the 19 jumpers who went off the bridge last year plus a number of attempted suicides.
Apparently, that was the point all along. Steel says his goal is to "allow us to see into the most impenetrable corners of the human mind and challenge us to think and talk about suicide in profoundly different ways."
- San Francisco Chronicle
The Bridge documentary Part One (viewer discretion advised)
New Yorker article.