The Story of the Stuff

An investigation into America’s obsession with temporary memorials, THE STORY OF THE STUFF is an interactive web documentary that mixes video, illustrations, and a personal essay as it tracks what happens to more than half a million letters, 65,000 teddy bears, and hundreds of thousands of other packages, donations, and condolence items sent to Newtown, Connecticut, in the wake of the Sandy Hook School shooting.

As filmmaker Ashley Maynor tracks Newtown’s stuff she also reflects on her experience of working in Blacksburg, Virginia on April 16, 2007, the site of the deadliest mass shooting in modern American history.

  • Ashley Maynor
    For Memories' Sake; as producer: Something Anything, Some Beasts, Quick Feet Soft Hands
  • Paul Harrill
    Executive Producer
  • Jason Staczek
    Keyhole, My Winnipeg
  • Natsko Seki
  • Project Type:
    Documentary, Web / New Media
  • Genres:
    web documentary, transmedia, interactive
  • Runtime:
    1 hour 12 minutes
  • Completion Date:
    April 16, 2015
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
  • Filmgate Interactive
    Miami, Florida
    February 26, 2016
  • Made in NY Media Center by IFP
    Brooklyn, NY
    August 7, 2015
  • Film Society at Lincoln Center
    New York City, NY
    July 21, 2015
    Invited Keynote - Storycode
  • Scribe Video Center
    Philadelphia, PA
    July 23, 2015
    Invited Screening
Director Biography

Ashley Maynor is an award-winning filmmaker, producer, and librarian. She produced the critically-acclaimed feature film Something, Anything (2014 New York Times Critics' Pick) and the ITVS co-production Quick Feet, Soft Hands, starring Greta Gerwig, both written and directed by Paul Harrill. She also produced writer/director Cameron Nelson's debut feature, Some Beasts (2013 US-in-Progress selection; 2014 IFP Narrative Lab). Her work as director includes the documentary For Memories’ Sake, which screened at the Library of Congress, the Nashville Film Festival, the Maryland Film Festival, and on the Southern Circuit Tour of Independent Filmmakers, among other venues, and the transmedia project, The Story of the Stuff.

She is a past recipient of the Sundance Institute's Sheila C. Johnson Creative Producing Fellowship and the American Library Association's Justin Winsor Prize. In 2015, she was named one of "10 to Watch" by Independent Magazine.

Her work has been supported by the Sundance Institute, the Independent Filmmaker Project (IFP), the Austin Film Society, the Southern Humanities Media Fund, and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

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