Letters

Fan Mail

Jun 19, 2019
Courtesy of: Chet Peeples The writer and Jimmy Ward, pictured in a 737 cockpit.

To the Editor:

I’m a big West Coast fan of Jimmy Ward (“Manahawkin Filmmaker’s New Short to Screen,” 5/29). I followed him from a distance as the days approached the release of his film “Chance Encounter” along with his director’s cut on June 3 in Manahawkin.

I live in San Francisco, where I first met Jimmy just over two years ago after I answered his invitation to come onboard a short film he was working on – not for school, not for a deadline, just for the craft. I was immediately drawn to his energy, his positivity and creativity. And, frankly, after spending time here as an alcohol/drug counselor on the streets of San Francisco prior to professional acting, meeting Jimmy inspired this 63-year-old man. I have not met a more mature, creative, resourceful young man as Jimmy.

Off and on the last two years we’ve worked together, yet I’ve never considered collaborating with Jimmy to be work. Jimmy spent three months making the film “Area Red,” a long time for short film. But Jimmy wanted to shoot in or on locations that often required us to slip in and out of choice spots without being caught, whether it was in the cockpit of a 737 or the SS Jeremiah O’Brien, a Liberty ship docked at the waterfront.

Through Jimmy I’ve had the privilege of working for other student filmmakers, collaborating when asked, which is where we’re all trying to work it out together, not be told what to do. That “all trying to work it out together” is apparently a theme that’s running through Jimmy and his work. I’m certain that his hometown area knows that better than I do.

Being cynical and suspicious seems to be the best some can do in these chaotic, troubling times, but with young men, and women such as Mira Laing, his creative photojournalist sidekick, out in the world everyday doing “good works,” I think we stand a better chance, a better outcome, for the future.

Chet Peeples

San Francisco, Calif.

 

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