A Letter to Congress

Wallace Stegner’s 1960 letter to Congress about the importance of wilderness is the framework for a new message, one in which our unified voice can help prevent the transfer of our most valuable heritage— our public lands— to private and corporate interests.

  • Christopher Newman
  • Dalia Burde
    Given, A Film about Coffee
  • Amani King
    Creative Director
  • Keenan Newman
    Director of Photography
  • David Bourke
    Director of Photography
  • Dana Shaw
  • Avocados and Coconuts
    Production Company
    Given, A Film about Coffee
  • Project Type:
  • Runtime:
    3 minutes 8 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    February 1, 2017
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
  • Mountainfilm
    Telluride, Colorado
    United States
    May 26, 2018
    Official Selection
  • 5Point Film Festival
    Carbondale, CO
    United States
    April 20, 2017
    World Premiere
    Official Selection
  • Wild and Scenic Film Festival
    Nevada City
    United States
    January 13, 2018
    California Premiere
    Best Short Film
  • Mountainfilm World Tour

    Official Selection
  • Wild and Scenic Film Tour

    Official Selection
  • Fresh Coast Film Festival
    Marquette, Michigan
    United States
    October 21, 2017
    Official Selection
  • OutFound Series
    Hood River, Oregon
    United States
    June 10, 2017
    Oregon Premiere
    Official Selection
  • American Conservation Film Festival
    Sheperdstown, West Virginia
    United States
    October 13, 2018
    Official Selection
  • Adventure Film Festival
    Boulder, CO
    United States
    October 6, 2018
    Official Selection
  • NOLS Exploration Film Tour

    United States
    Official Selection
  • Nordic Mountain Film Festival (Fjellfilm)
    September 13, 2018
    European Premiere
    Official Selection
  • Sierra Nevada Film Festival
    Murphys, California
    United States
    March 31, 2018
    Official Selection
  • Sustainable Living Film Festival
    November 22, 2018
    Official Selection
  • Northcoast Environmental Center
    Arcata, CA
    United States
    October 25, 2018
    Official Selection
  • OARS Boathouse Tour

    United States
    Official Selection
Director Biography - Christopher Newman

Chris began his career shooting professional surfers across the globe. Having earned a Masters degree in documentary from UC Santa Cruz, his award winning doc work screened in festivals worldwide and nationally on PBS. After a stint living and filming in Peru, he returned to San Francisco, building his commercial reel as a director, working with major brands and agencies. Drawing from his diverse filmmaking background, he strives to create cinematic, heartfelt and honest connections between his subjects and the viewer. Chris can’t stay dry for too long. Most days you can find him surfing and photographing the rugged swells that frequent his northern California home.

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Director Statement

I originally set out to make this film as a homage to Wallace Stegner and the enduring words he wrote in his famous 'Wilderness Letter' to Congress in 1960. His poetic appeal for robust and comprehensive conservation efforts of America’s wild lands gave me pause. In this current political climate his words began to take on new meaning. His plea for what wilderness can do for us is more relevant now than ever. Thousands of acres of our remaining public lands are threatened everyday. We need to stand together to protect America's wild lands from being sold off to the highest bidder. We must preserve wilderness as a "means of reassuring ourselves of our sanity as creatures, a part of the geography of hope."