WHY AN ANTHOLOGY
8beats offers compelling artistry in a variety of stories and genres.
Because of the structure of the project, the short films were each produced independently and thus offer unique cinematic styles particular to the regional teams. This engaging film format has something for everyone.
The stories place raw human experience at the forefront, allowing each short film to unfold the Beatitudes’ significance to provoke personal reflection. Many movies make an end of themselves; this project enlivens viewers for a richer inner life and moral thoughtfulness.
The unitive theme of 8beats places love and humility as central virtues, and as the ultimate victory over violence, oppression, and shame. This anthology seeks to start constructive dialogue in order to heal communities for greater peace. It’s the perfect jumping-off point for courageous conversation and transformative action.
WHO ARE WE
We’re a large online community of artists and filmmakers from across North America, bound together in the desire to elevate the spiritual imagination through rich narrative storytelling and the craft of film.
8beats was born out of this massive collaboration. It was crowdfunded by individuals from around the world who, like us, long to see ancient, timeless wisdom illuminated in the modern world.
WHY THE BEATITUDES
Widely considered some of the most inspirational and important teachings in human history, the 8 Beatitudes present a counterintuitive approach to leading a meaningful life.
When Jesus spoke these beatitudes, or “blessings,” people were shocked and challenged. He said that those who hungered for righteousness would be satisfied, that those who were oppressed would prevail. This direct and radical message of compassion subverts the “false gospels” which idolize prosperity, privilege, and power. His words gave dignity to the outcast. His words set captives free.
The Beatitudes are not moral prescriptions, but paradoxical and poetic doorways into our deepest questions and longings. What do we hope for? What do we fear? Will we ever find resolution in our deepest yearnings? The Beatitudes speak of the kind of hope that can only come out despair, the kind of joy that only comes out of suffering: a beauty that can only come out of the mess.
We want to get back to the root of what these teachings really mean. At their core, they aren’t just for religious people—they’re for all people. They’re for people who are searching for happiness, who are tired of shallow ideologies. For people who believe in the dignity in their fellow humans. For people who, against all odds, want to make change happen at this tumultuous time. The 8 Beatitudes provoke personal reflection and assure us that hate will not win.
BLESSED ARE THE POOR IN SPIRIT, FOR THEIRS IS THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN.
BLESSED ARE THEY WHO MOURN, FOR THEY WILL BE COMFORTED.
BLESSED ARE THE MEEK, FOR THEY WILL INHERIT THE EARTH.
BLESSED ARE THEY WHO HUNGER AND THIRST FOR RIGHTEOUSNESS, FOR THEY WILL BE SATISFIED.
BLESSED ARE THE MERCIFUL, FOR THEY WILL BE SHOWN MERCY.
BLESSED ARE THE PURE OF HEART, FOR THEY WILL SEE GOD.
BLESSED ARE THE PEACEMAKERS, FOR THEY WILL BE CALLED CHILDREN OF GOD.
BLESSED ARE THEY WHO ARE PERSECUTED FOR THE SAKE OF RIGHTEOUSNESS, fOR THEIRS IS THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN.
February 2017: The project was born! Team members met for the first time to give this project its initial shape.
April: We commissioned Daniela Madriz to create a logo and icons representing the 8 Beatitudes. We voted on the title of 8beats which references the Beatitudes and other film projects.
May: The teams began writing their film treatments and synopses. We brought on Marcellino D’Ambrosio and the team of Sherwood Fellows as for creative direction the website and strategize our online presence.
June: Our writers submitted their storyboards and scripts to our collaborative group for feedback, and a writer’s workshop was held. We began preparing for the Indiegogo campaign and applying for grants.
July: We invited artists to join the team as designers and copywriters, and the team began to expand even more. We launched the website and announced the project to the public.
August: In August our project exploded. We opened up official collaboration with the Catholic Creatives Community and an influx of top marketers, designers, and copywriters joined the fray. We launched the Indiegogo campaign and began the process of raising $200,000.
October: Our Indiegogo campaign came to a close and not only did we reached our initial goal of $50,000, we went on to hit our stretch goal of $80,000.
We continued to workshop the scripts, and after much discussion and collaboration they were all slowly approved one by one by our team of directors. As each script was approved, teams entered into production beginning in September 2017 and continuing into December 2018.
6 of the 8 films are currently completed and the two remaining films are projected to be complete in Spring of 2019.
As each team wrapped production, they entered into editing. Recruiting composers, sound designers, and colorists to make the films come to life. Some teams had to schedule re-shoots or pick-up shoots.
July 2018: Teams submitted footage of their films and an editor started cutting together a trailer for the anthology. Teams also sent in behind the scenes pictures and videos for the "making of" documentary. The Marketing Team updated the website and social media platforms for the next phase of the project. Also, graphic designers and copywriters were brought back onto the team to design the poster art, meditation booklets, and Blu-ray design.
August: The new website is launched. Teams continue editing as they race to finish their films.
September: An almost completed version of the anthology premiered at the Catholic Creatives Summit in Dallas, Texas on September 13, 2018.
Spring 2019: Indiegogo rewards will be fulfilled and decisions about 8beats distribution and film festival entries will be made.