The River is Life Tour, a first in independent filmmaking history, will be movie makers Ryan Jeanes’ and Phillip Hullquist’s second trip down the entire length of the Mississippi River. The creative pair is “taking their show on the road” showing their epic documentary The River is Life – a fun-filled feature of their real-life adventure down the Mighty Mississippi – to audiences north and south along America’s Great River.
Jeanes and Hullquist departed in two inflatable Sea Eagle kayaks from Lake Itasca, Minnesota (the source of the Mississippi) in June of 2009 and filmed their exploits – staying in people’s homes, camping along the riverbanks, and contending with wind-swollen lakes, barge traffic, and massive boat wakes – for the entertainment of adventure lovers and seekers everywhere.
Their ninety-minute film is full of surprises. “A lot of people were amazed at how many people we met,” Jeanes says. “We couldn’t go a week without someone calling us over for a beer or for dinner or (with luck) a warm bed.”
“You’ll meet quite a funny cast of characters in this movie,” Hullquist adds, “from an over-size Kentuckian sporting his duck call to a racy Minnesota woman threatening to kill us in our sleep. Boats and barges weren’t the only things we had to defend against,” he laughs.
Jeanes and Hullquist plan to bring the same sense of fun and adventure they relished on the river to their 42-stop movie tour, where they will present their film in many of the same cities and towns they stayed in almost a year ago. “The shows will also be outdoors!” Jeanes explains. “This is a first for independent movies. We want to give people a real-life Mississippi experience, so we’ve arranged to show the movie in parks all along the banks of the Mississippi! It’s going to be a festival-like atmosphere where, if we do our jobs right, the whole family will have the time of their lives!”
The movie will debut in Minnesota where the duo started their journey. Over the course of three months they will make their way to New Orleans entreating audiences to “share in the adventure” and enjoy a heart-warming film not only about the majesty and wonder America’s most recognizable waterway but also the people that make this nation and this river so great. “It’s a family piece,” Hullquist says, “it really is. Without the people we met along the way, who shared their lives with us, this film would never have been possible. It promises to be an immensely enjoyable, immensely inspiring film.”
The River is Life Movie Tour begins August 4th and will end in New Orleans on Halloween night. To find out more information please visit theriverislife.com for a schedule and free venue kit.