Five years later, what was lost and what was gained

On this fifth anniversary of Katrina, I’ve been hard at work editing a film Richard Anderson and I are creating about the loss of photographs in the storm. It’s been kind of a surreal experience as the coverage has been playing over the last week, and I’ve been staring at the footage of Rick Olivier, Keith Calhoun and Chandra McCormick, Donn Young, Nick Spitzer, and John Lawrence.

It’s a little like time and space travel, (a Billy Pilgrim experience), as I bounce between watching Katrina on the tube five years ago in my mind, filming last spring in New Orleans on my computer, and the Peter Jennings broadcasts in real time on the tube.

Here’s Nick in a clip that sums up the duality at work.

And it’s all been further confused because we left New Orleans last spring full of hope at the redemption that seemed to be occurring, only to have the oil spill knock everyone down again.

I’ll be finishing up the first cut of this film and the one on Frans Lanting on my own time as our funding from the Library of Congress has run its course. We will have something good to look at by the end of September. Thanks to ASMP and the Library for making this possible, and Bryce Lankard for setting up these great interviews.