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'Born Into Brothels' Spawns Foundation, Photo Contest

27 Sep, 2005 By: Holly J. Wagner

Tight shelf space at mass merchant and specialty retailers is sparking some creative approaches to getting attention for specialty titles. Suppliers are placing them in places one might not think of as the first place to buy a DVD.

ThinkFilm is one of the up-and-comers thinking out of the box. Or in this case, out of the box-camera. The supplier has a marketing deal with Ritz Camera stores to carry the Academy Award-winning documentary Born Into Brothels.

The documentary received acclaim for shining light on the lives of the children of Calcutta sex workers and, in its creation, helping them find a path out of their poverty through the self-expression of taking pictures of the world in which they live.

ThinkFilm also has partnered with Ritz Camera stores to create the “Ultimate Digital Photography Contest,” benefiting the Kids with Cameras Foundation, a nonprofit organization founded by filmmaker Zana Briski in 2002 after she filmed the documentary. Kids with Cameras continues her work by teaching the art of photography to marginalized children in communities around the world.

Timed to coincide with the Sept. 20 DVD release, the contest will award eight photography-centric prizes for the most inspirational original photographic submissions.

A registration form, which is included in the Born Into Brothels DVD package and available separately at Ritz Camera stores or online at www.kids-with-cameras.org, must accompany each photo submitted. Submission guidelines specify that photos should bring inspiration to the photographer and those who view them and must have a description of how and why the photo is inspirational to the photographer. The entry fee is $3 per photo, and all donations the contest generates will go to the Kids with Cameras Foundation. The contest is open to submissions until Nov. 30.

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