Filmmaker brings documentary with local ties to Animal Film Festival in Grass Valley |

Filmmaker brings documentary with local ties to Animal Film Festival in Grass Valley

Kim Midboe
Staff Writer

Filmmaker Keegan Kuhn, founder of First Spark Media based in El Cerrito, has been involved in social justice media for 10 years.

He began working with Animal Place, a farmed animal sanctuary in Grass Valley, to make videos highlighting animal rescues. According to Kuhn, the sanctuary has been involved in the rescue of 12,000 animals.

Animal Place is "far and away the best of almost any organization I have worked with. It's a phenomenal organization that has flown under the radar," said Kuhn.

In February 2012, Kuhn received a call from a sanctuary staff member and was first to arrive at A&L Poultry in Turlock.

He not only spent time behind the camera, but also helped Animal Place staff and volunteers to rescue more than 4,400 chickens.

"It was difficult to balance documenting and wanting to help with the rescue," he said.

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At times, "I had my arms full of chickens."

For Kuhn, the experience was "monumental … to have it in my face, to hold an animal that's dying. It made (the issues) real."

His efforts resulted in "Turlock," a documentary which will be shown at Saturday's inaugural Animal Film Festival in Grass Valley.

Kuhn will be available for questions during the festival.

The film festival will mark the last time this incarnation of the documentary will be shown.

Kuhn has been working on an extended version, which will premiere March 13 at The Guild Theater in Sacramento.

Kuhn is currently co-directing an environmental film titled "Cowspiracy: The Sustainability Secret."

Visit for more information.

Contact Copy Editor Kim Midboe at or call 530-477-4251.

Know & Go

What: “Turlock”

When: 5:25 p.m.

Where: The Center for the Arts, 314 W. Main St.


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