DESCRIPTION: The Packard Motor Car Company and its 5-million square foot plant became a symbol of the American Dream in the heart of the Motor City. Packard left town in 1954, but its plant still stands. The half-mile stretch of rubble and ruin tells a story of failed politics and criminal activity, of scrappers and arsonists who went too far, and of the perseverance of one business to stick it out. The lawless plant has become a haven for street artists and curiosity seekers from around the world. And with all eyes on Detroit many are asking – can the Packard Plant be saved?
PRODUCTION: I began filming at the Packard Plant shortly after moving to Detroit in 2007. Like so many before me, I was struck by the plant’s enormity and emptiness, so different from the Southern California landscape I was raised in. Over several years and between many other projects, I continued to film at the Packard Plant and uncover its fascinating history. The feature film premiered at the 1st annual Freep Film Festival in 2014.
POST–PREMIERE: While local demand for additional screenings has been high, the film is not yet publicly available. Much like Detroit, the Packard Plant is in a transformative state and I intend to continue its documentation.