Former Peterborough high school student’s film to headline ReFrame Film Festival

Filmmaker Slater Jewell-Kemker began making 'Youth Unstoppable', about the youth environmental movement, a decade ago

In "Youth Unstoppable", filmmaker Slater Jewell-Kemker documents her decade-long involvement in the youth climate movement, as well as her efforts to give young people a voice in the fight to combat climate change. The film will headline the opening night of the 2019 ReFrame Film Festival on January 24th at Showplace Performance Centre in downtown Peterborough. (Supplied photo)
In "Youth Unstoppable", filmmaker Slater Jewell-Kemker documents her decade-long involvement in the youth climate movement, as well as her efforts to give young people a voice in the fight to combat climate change. The film will headline the opening night of the 2019 ReFrame Film Festival on January 24th at Showplace Performance Centre in downtown Peterborough. (Supplied photo)

A documentary film about the youth environmental movement by a former Peterborough high school student is headlining the 2019 ReFrame Film Festival.

Filmmaker Slater Jewell-Kemker made Youth Unstoppable to amplify youth voices against climate change. The film will screen on ReFrame’s opening night at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, January 24th at Showplace Performance Centre in downtown Peterborough.

Born in Los Angeles to filmmaker parents, Jewell-Kemker moved to Kawartha Lakes when she was 10 years old. While still a student at PCVS in Peterborough, she began her work as a filmmaker-activist chronicling the global youth movement, and most of her early work was made right here in Peterborough.

Born in Los Angeles to filmmaker parents, Slater Jewell-Kemker (right) moved to Kawartha Lakes when she was 10 years old. She attended PCVS in Peterborough, but dropped out of high school when she was 16 to pursue her passion to document the global youth environmental movement. (Supplied photo)
Born in Los Angeles to filmmaker parents, Slater Jewell-Kemker (right) moved to Kawartha Lakes when she was 10 years old. She attended PCVS in Peterborough, but dropped out of high school when she was 16 to pursue her passion to document the global youth environmental movement. (Supplied photo)

“One of my very first short films, Peace Begins, screened at the ReFrame Film Festival around the time I started this documentary,” she says. “It always kind of stuck in my mind … wouldn’t it be great to come back here when I’m done with this film, to come back to my home area where I can bring my friends and have them see what I’ve been doing for the past ten years?”

At 16, Jewell-Kemker dropped out of high school to pursue her passion for filmmaking. Now 26, her work has been covered by national media including The Toronto Star and in Flare’s 30 Under 30 list. The UN, TIFF, Forbes.com’s “Millennials on a Mission”, Mountainfilm, and SilverDocs have all recognized Jewell-Kemker for her activist filmmaking.

Youth Unstoppable documents Jewell-Kemker’s decade-long involvement in the youth climate movement, as well as her efforts to give young people a voice in the fight to combat climate change.

“Young, passionate activists are attempting to save the planet and humankind,” she says. “I wanted to help give them a voice and document our struggle, one that gives me hope that we might just be able to save ourselves.”

Youth Unstoppable is produced by Daniel Bekerman of Scythia Films and Wendy Jewell (Slater’s mother). Adrian Grenier, best known as the former star of Entourage, is an executive producer of the film.

The film screened in May 2018 in Cannes as part of the World Bank Group’s global climate communications and partnership program Connect4Climate.

VIDEO: Slater Jewell-Kemker talks about her film ‘Youth Unstoppable’

“Youth Unstoppable is an inspiring film,” says ReFrame creative director Amy Siegel. “It’s the perfect celebration of our fifteenth anniversary. ReFrame showcased the work of this local teenager, and within a decade she’s back to screen the opening night feature film.”

“Slater’s story shows us a way forward in a global crisis that often seems impenetrable, and I know it will foster critical discussion, action, and change amongst all who see it.”

Tickets for ReFrame’s opening night, as well as festival passes, are available online now at reframefilmfestival.ca.

Beginning Friday, December 7th, tickets and passes will also be available at the GreenUP Store (378 Aylmer St. N., Peterborough, 705-745-3238), Watson & Lou (383 Water St., Peterborough, 705-775-7568), Happenstance Books and Yarn (44 Queen St., Lakefield, 705-652-7535), and at the Pastry Peddler (17 King St. E., Millbrook, 705-932-7333).

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