July 2024 Newsletter: The Road to Completion

Welcome to the July edition of the Reel Nation Media newsletter! Last month, we made great progress on Sally’s Iron Mustangs and are on the horizon for our next film. This is our first newsletter in three years, and we are excited to reconnect with you.

We are close to finishing the music for Sally’s Iron Mustangs; all that’s left is the sound mixing and coloring. Last month taught me a valuable lesson: we can’t achieve our goals alone. Seeing the impact of Sally’s Iron Mustangs on our fundraising screening audiences, motivating them to go to the gym or join a group, was incredibly fulfilling. It reminded me that healing myself and others with art is my passion; it’s what drives me every day. The support from audience members, family, and friends was equally inspiring. People were eager to see the film and asked how they could support us.

We have realized the importance of audience participation from the beginning, so we restarted this newsletter. Moving forward, we want to foster real relationships with you—whether having coffee together, meeting up for dinner, or simply engaging in meaningful conversations. This is how I believe we can best serve through Reel Nation Media.

Project Updates

Sally’s Iron Mustangs

We are thrilled to update you on Sally’s Iron Mustangs. We recently hosted our third fundraiser screening (Read More), submitted the film to various festivals, and attended a grant dinner with the Harrisburg community. The music is progressing beautifully, thanks to the final spotting session with our composer, Sam Kelly. We fine-tuned each music cue, enhancing the sound design to ensure it tells its own story, adding depth and spirit to the film. The album of the original soundtrack will be available on popular platforms like Spotify and iTunes.

New Projects on the Horizon

We are also excited about three new projects currently in the research phase, addressing pressing topics such as addiction, trauma-informed education for children, and family displacement due to occupations worldwide. We welcome your ideas and suggestions as we explore these critical issues.

Collaboration Mentions

Other Milestones

  • Attended a grant dinner with TFEC, connecting with the Harrisburg community (TFEC)

Spotlight: Sam Kelly, Composer of Sally’s Iron Mustangs

Sam Kelly has been an integral part of Sally’s Iron Mustangs since the project’s inception in 2022. With a rich background in composing for Discovery Channel nature films, Sam brings a unique musical perspective to our projects. Our collaboration began with exchanging ideas for the score during the filming phase, inspired by the sports genre album Megalobox. We then transitioned to music that resonates with the characters, such as oldies, church music, and James Brown.

Sam once shared with me,

“Our job isn’t to tell the audience what we feel, but explore what the characters are going through. Putting ourselves in others’ shoes—that is the doorway to empathy.”

This profound approach to music composition enhances the emotional depth of our films.

Community Engagement: TFEC

We want to take a moment to highlight the incredible work he Foundation for Enhancing Communities ( TFEC) does for our communities. TFEC is dedicated to improving the quality of life in Central Pennsylvania through community-focused philanthropy. Established as one of the oldest community foundations in the United States,  TFEC provides simple, effective, and personalized services to help donors achieve their charitable goals. The foundation supports a wide range of initiatives, including educational scholarships, community development, and nonprofit capacity building, making a lasting impact in the communities it serves. Learn more about their initiatives here: TFEC

Upcoming Events and Releases

We have submitted Sally’s Iron Mustangs to various film festivals and will announce the locations and times of the screenings once accepted. We are looking at events for the summer and fall of 2024 in Lancaster, PA, Harrisburg, PA, and Washington, D.C. Stay tuned for updates.

We are also building an event page on our website to provide seamless information on all our events and how you can participate.

We Want to Hear From You

We are eager to know what our patrons care about most as we begin producing our next round of films. Please share your thoughts on what emotional fires need to be put out or what healing our communities need. Email me at RNM@reelnationmedia.com with your feedback and suggestions.

Funding and Support Opportunities

For Sally’s Iron Mustangs, we aim to reach $60,000 to cover the post-production costs, including editing labor, music composing, sound mixing, and coloring. Achieving this will allow us to distribute the film on major platforms and screen it to senior communities.

How You Can Contribute

  • Meet for Coffee: Get to know us and join us for brainstorming sessions.
  • Pre-purchase a Digital Copy: Purchase Here
  • Attend Fundraising Events: Stay tuned for upcoming event announcements.

You can also support us by following our social media channels:

Closing Note

During a recent screening, someone told me, “You should be proud of yourself that you have made something that will help a lot of people.” This heartfelt feedback almost brought me to tears and is a memory that will stay with me through the challenges of making future films.

Reel Nation Media is committed to maintaining and developing relationships with our patrons and audience. Thank you for being a part of our journey.

Keep it Reel! 

Abdullah Abu-Mahfouz & The Reel Nation Media Team

Abdullah Abu-Mahfouz (left), Dr. Erin Price (middle), and Sam Kelly (right) - Sally's Iron Mustangs Fundraiser Screener at Armstrong Valley, Halifax PA, June 7, 2024.

Abdullah Abu-Mahfouz (left), Dr. Erin Price (middle), and Sam Kelly (right)