What about Montana inspired you to create your short?
Paccione: Same reasons I moved here in the first place- beauty, community, lifestyle, and oh yeah mountains! Montanans are great, self sufficient, humble and caring. We take care of things on our own. If its broken we fix it. Folks still hold doors open, say thank you and buy strangers coffee. This world is so competitive and cut-throat these days. Everyone is out for themselves, but in Montana you don’t find that. We have to stick together to thrive in this state. I come from a blue-collar factory town where you have to work everyday to support your family. There are no sick days and when a neighbor needs help, you help no questions asked. That’s what I’ve found in Montana and I love it. Life is much easier holding hands, and people like to hold hands here.
How did your team come up with the idea to have the pizza growing out of the ground?
Martin: I was out with two of my friends from Red Brain Media and they casually brought up the Real Montana competition and that they wanted to do something for Red Tractor. This conversation happened four days before the window to enter was closing. So we sat there at the brewery and came up with the idea for the video. The idea came from Red Tractor’s slogan “Farm to Table” so we decide create a video with the slogan “Farm to Pizza.” Red Tractor is dedicated to local organics, so we wanted to make a video that told a story about their dedication to organic ingredients and local organic farms. We shot the video and edited in one day, and got it onto the website the next day.
What other videos competing in Real Montana did you enjoy and why?
Martin: I really like the top two videos we are competing against right now. I was happy someone else went a less serious route. A lot of the videos were really serious, but it’s fun to have a couple of entertaining videos, like Montana: Defying Expectations. It was fun to see that other people had the same idea as us and it’s really fun they have the old cowboy voice and everything.
I really liked Colin’s time lapse. That’s a super difficult thing to pull of. You can tell he’s very talented. I’ve tried my hand at time lapse and it’s really difficult. His video, Montana is super impressive.
Paccione: My favorite videos are Colin’s and Abbey’s. The cinematography is great and they obviously have a passion for this state. Why are these my two favorite films? Because of the beauty, the mountains, the people and the deception of what people think about Montanans and who we really are. I have a lyric in one of my songs that I live by daily “The mountains are my church where I may pray, this beautiful blue earth she’s my god all day.” These two videos have captured that lyric perfectly. These two did great and it’s no wonder they’re taking the lead in the finals.
What do you plan to do with the prize money if you win?
Paccione: The money… I wish the world didn’t work on this stuff! Well being a restaurant 16 months new, a portion will go into RTP just to balance our books. Its tough for me because of the way I believe we should eat. I purchase organically, sustainable and locally when possible. I’m unwilling to go any other route, which makes my product more expensive than Sysco bought pizzerias and especially national chains that can sell $5 larges.
For me this contest was more of an education tool and a tool to give back as much as possible more than anything else. Oh yeah the money, we’re going to give Joel a portion. He didn’t ask for anything and he really deserves most of it. So its known, loud and clear he was 100% the master mind of this whole thing. Concept, directing, editing and all. I met Joel the day before we filmed, the day he pitched the idea to me. If I didn’t get anything out of this competition other than Joel’s friendship, I would be more than ecstatic about that. He is a great person and I am proud to say he is now my friend and probably will be for life.
The majority of the money is going to host a party to raise even more money for the Gallatin Valley Farm to School program. You can solve any problem by getting to the root of the problem. If we educate and make all these processes routine at an early age, boom problem solved. Local, sustainable, organic is not out of the ordinary and shouldn’t be perceived as “high-end” or “fancy.” Its the way it has been done for thousands of years and should be the norm. I am fighting to get it back to that way.
I heard that you are planning on raising money on the site for Gallatin Valley Farm to School. What is your goal?
Paccione: Gallatin Valley Farm to School is hoping to raise $20,000 to get this mural done. This has never been about us. It’s always been about our community, our children and our future.
Martin: We’re really excited Real Montana has been a super fun experience for us. Adam has been really excited about it being able to share the video. It’s good for him and Red Tractor.
Check out “Red Tractor: Farm to Pizza,” competing in the Real Montana Finals.
The Audience Awards is film’s social network connecting audiences to films, filmmakers, film schools and film festivals. The Audience Awards hosts short film competitions where the audience chooses the best films.