Includes "In Lorton's Darkroom" and "The 13th Step"
In Lorton's Darkroom is the story of a group of inmates in DC's infamous Lorton Correctional Facility during the 1980's who transform their prison experience, and themselves while participating in a photography program.
Documentary Short - United States, 37:30
“In Lorton’s Darkroom” Directed by Karen Ruckman
Karen works in the nation’s capital photographing decision makers and celebrities for a variety of clients from Congressional Quarterly to Hello magazine. She is the recipient of grants and awards for her pioneering teaching workshops with marginalized groups in the DC community. She has mounted exhibitions of this work, receiving media recognition including segments on ABC’s Good Morning America and NPR’s All Things Considered. She is currently completing a documentary about the prison project, a story of inmates who came of age in the prison and their journeys after release. Her personal projects include work in Northern Ireland where she is documenting the transition from the troubles, and a project on spirituality that has taken her around the globe, and to the nature preserve on Assateague Island, off the coast of Virginia.
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"The 13th Step" is a critical expose of Alcoholics Anonymous. When an AA member killed a mother & child in Honolulu, a five-year investigation ensued. We discovered courts order violent/sexual offenders to AA meetings, unknown to the public.
Documentary Feature - United States, 57:00
The 13th Step directed by Monica Richardson Monica is a filmmaker and grass roots activist who recently appeared on CBS 48 Hours -The Sober Truth episode in November 2014, and episode on Katie Couric’s show Katie for her social activism (July 16, 2013)
Her life’s story was highlighted in the New York Times best-selling book, Her Best Kept Secret – Why Women Drink – and How They Can Regain Control by journalist Gabrielle Glaser.
Monica has a national blog talk radio show “Safe Recovery” with over 285,000 downloads and a blog Leaving AA with over 4 million hits in 2016.
Monica began her career studying both music and performance. She was a member of the Groundlings with fellow classmates Conan O’Brien and Damon Wayans. She studied Playhouse West with Shawnee Smith and Heather Graham and has recorded three music albums. Richardson also has modest success as a voice actor, appearing on the animated series Batman, Sofia the First and a number of national commercials.
Monica is also the business manager of KMR Productions, for her husband, Kevin Michael Richardson, one of the busiest animation voiceover actor’s in television today. She previously held positions at LACER Afterschool Programs, and 20th Century Fox Film Corporation.
Monica attended classes at Santa Monica College, the UCLA extension Documentary Film Class, as well as “Produced By” Conferences, Hot Docs Conference in Toronto, West Docs in Los Angeles, the Getting Real Doc Conference in Hollywood, attended Midem conferences at Cannes, and many ASCAP Expo’s.