Greetings ... from Washington, D.C.!

As the seasons change (though it's difficult to see in Missoula, MT through the veil of wildfire smoke), so does the New Neighbors Project.


The project has entered post-production. Our directors have finished filming and are now at the forefront of the editing phase. As our directors follow their films’ narratives to an artistic close, the beginnings of new life chapters unfold.


Having asked themselves "what journey from my life do I want to share?" our directors have taken the opportunity to reflect. Topics they are exploring range from women's opportunities here and in Africa to garnering driver's licenses and exploring the Mountain West. Their connections with community (in Africa and America) continues to expand.


While their film products may be honing in on a finished form, the processes set in motion by the self-discovery of filmmaking are just revving up and - in many cases - have nothing to do with a camera.


We are a filmmaking cooperative; however, these larger personal developments in our directors’ lives are what we work hardest to promote. Where each director is headed benefits us all. It is my hope that many of you will experience this first-hand--you'll learn about them through their films but also through meaningful interactions with “new neighbors” in your own communities.


That is my goal for myself as I seek to serve the New Neighbors Project (and Missoula by extension) from the nation's capital. I will be pursuing development and funding opportunities for our initiative through a professional program. I want to help our directors take their visions as far as they dare to go (even if it means returning to Africa to spread a message). The next step is to provide the same opportunities for other communities in Montana that are too often treated as talking points rather than as our neighbors.


Creative director and my dear friend, Gabe Sweeney, will be serving as the New Neighbors Project's acting director during my time in D.C..


Thanks for your continued support,

Bryan Bello