Here’s the trailer for a feature film completed in early 2016 — RAREFIED. Over more than two years, I traveled to spend nights, afternoons, or multiple weekends with each of nine families with a variety of suspected genetic-linked disorders. The result is a film that shows and explains how complex new science is shaping the lives of families everywhere.
Forward Cities is a multi-city collaboration between Durham, Detroit, Cleveland and New Orleans, focused on equitable and diverse redevelopment of urban economies. Each city hosts a “convening” for members of the other communities to visit and engage in vibrant dialogue on the issues relevant to that city. The result is an exchange of ideas and energy which can be taken back to the other communities to enrich and inform constructive growth. This video highlights some of the activities of the Durham convening in December 2015.
This is one of a series of videos, made over six weeks in Barcelona, about different types of urban gardens. Can Masdeu is a communal-living project on the outskirts of Barcelona, Spain, where 30 people experiment with various approaches to living sustainably together. The community began from a group of people squatting in an abandoned hospital, where they have remained since 2001.
During much of 2012 and 2013, I shot, edited, and assisted in overall production of a series of seven videos on behalf of The Wallace Foundation. The videos complement a written report detailing best practices for urban arts programs around the U.S. This video serves as the introduction for the entire project. The entire collection of the seven videos may be accessed here.
A company I had been hoping to work with for several years finally gave me the chance to produce something cool for an international conference! Urban Planet Mobile started in Durham and has grown rapidly to more than a dozen countries with their educational programs. This video was the first of its kind for them and a real achievement for me (and Growler Visuals). We did this one in under ten days total, developing the script they started, directing and producing it from there.
I am a videojournalist, a producer, an author, a director, an interviewer, a project organizer, and a skilled communicator. I look for the true story and tell it as clearly as possible. Underlying all my work is a conviction to improve the world, one story at a time. This site is the best way of introducing viewers to a summary of my creative work.
“When we need a great-looking video with the highest production values, we turn to Wil. He’s competent and professional and an extremely good listener, which results in finished edits that perfectly capture the spirit of the story we’re trying to tell.”
-Karl Leif Bates, Duke University Science Journalist
I’ve always considered myself a writer and have been making films and videos of many stripes since the late ’80s. I grew up in a small town in NC, graduated from Duke University with a degree in English, certificate in Film & Video, and earned a Master’s in Journalism from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, which is when my own narrative finally made sense. (I do NOT pull for Carolina in sports, just to be clear.) Since 2007, I have been self-employed creating nonfiction (documentary) films and videos. I have now completed three feature-length documentaries about: my “through-hike” of the entire Appalachian Trail in 2001, my brother’s conversion to (non-fundamentalist, Sufi) Islam, and author Reynolds Price’s 50-plus-year career as a teacher. I worked for LookSmart (a dot-com) in San Francisco, during which time it went public, and then I got laid-off in 2001. Don’t ask about the stock. I have also been licensed as a massage therapist. I have a dog, no kids, very little debt, and a strong disdain for the Western status quo. Cycling, running, swimming, hiking, and many other outdoor activities help to keep me fit and sane and I love them all!
I speak Spanish fluently, Portuguese and French conversationally. I’ve done documentary work (at least once each) in Chile, Peru, Honduras, Costa Rica, Spain, Senegal, and Republic of Congo. Being able to navigate deftly with minimal gear has allowed me an entirely new way to record and tell compelling stories.
My hope is that, through this site and these pages, anyone who may be interested in my work and passions will be engaged. It became clear during journalism school that my life’s work would not be filled with “hard news” or made-for-TV videos. Rather, my true purpose is to relate messages which may serve to make the world better — eliciting smiles, informing or educating about useful programs and technologies, entertaining in thoughtful ways, moving society forward — and nonfiction video is the vehicle to those ends. With a veritable smorgasbord of my work (not all of it) in these pages, I look forward to captivating and challenging viewers’ minds. Please: engage and let me know what you are thinking.
I like to think about things. I like to say things. I will write about some things.
My actual blog posts appear HERE.
Please feel free to contact me here for ideas, concerns, elation, or simply more information:
Wilson O. Weldon, III
1300 Kent Street
Durham, NC 27707
wil (at) wilweldon (dot) com.