You know from reading our Social posts that we are so proud of the directors on our roster. They continue to tirelessly create amazing work that never fails to impress us. Today we add another amazing thing to this list of accomplishments, straight from the creative minds of our director duo Salazar. Nathan and Jeff have successfully raised the funds required to turn their short doc Wizard Mode (a Vimeo staff pick), a story about one of the best pinball players in the world who happens to have autism, into a feature film.
Robert Emilio Gagno, the short doc and feature film’s main subject, was diagnosed with autism at the age of three. Over time, Robert has become one of the best pinball players in the world, unlocking a hidden level in the game that only reveals itself to players who complete a series of lighting-speed challenges. Salazar writes that this story is unique and important because “though he [Robert] has many victories and the support of the pinball community, he seeks to find his independence as he comes of age. Robert tries to balance all of his real world responsibilities and still be a pinball champion, searching to unlock his own wizard mode.”
Their project has caught the attention of leading video-sharing platform Vimeo and Canadian film distributor Blue Ice Docs. Both have generously matched funding for the film, with Blue Ice Docs also sponsoring a theatrical release in Canada upon its completion.
Though Salazar’s fundraising campaign is complete, stay in the loop to learn more about the film’s theatrical release and how you can get involved. This is a film we’ll definitely be making our way to Canada to see. It exemplifies one of the things we love most about Salazar: their dedication to authentic storytelling and bringing out the humanity of each person they meet.
If you haven’t already, take some time to view the short doc above. Cheers to Salazar and this incredible project that’s truly deserving of all the support it has received so far: may we all unlock our inner wizard!
Pictured above-left: Pinball wizard Robert with Nathan and Jeff