Open Heart

14 May 2004
No notice, no preparation and no crew, but director Dominic DeJoseph still came
up with a compelling documentary about last winter's Heart of America tour.

The new film received its premiere at the Tribeca Film Fest in New York last weekend
and on DATA's website DeJoseph describes how he got involved when 'one rock star,
two movie stars, one heroic Ugandan activist, three brilliant doctors, and 12
talented Ghanaian kids traveled in three buses through seven states in seven days,
in order to put a human face on the crisis of AIDS in Africa'

'I was honoured to be asked by Bono and Bobby Shriver to document the "Heart of
America Tour" in the winter of 2002. I was also a tiny bit worried because I was
being asked to jump on a plane to Lincoln, Nebraska the next day, and work without
a single crewmember to film this important ten days on the road. 'We were going
to be traveling by bus the entire time, and there was simply no room for even
a sound person to accompany me. I accepted the challenge, as I knew it was going
to be an important series of events that would have probably gone undocumented
otherwise. 'Ultimately, it was the strength and energy of Agnes Nyamayarwo, the
tour's spokesperson from Uganda, who kept us all going. Agnes, an HIV-positive
woman taking antiretroviral drugs, had come to America for the very first time
and remained full of energy and hope throughout the gruelling ten-day bus tour
of eight states, appearing onstage each night to talk about her husband and children
dying from AIDS. 'Everyone we met along the way was inspired by Agnes' story,
and I have no doubt that it was hearing firsthand the impact of AIDS on her life
that encouraged them to bombard the White House with letters afterwards. Agnes
definitely became my hero during our trip, and I'm pleased to be part of taking
her story to the wider American public.'

More on the new film at

Meanwhile, Bono will be speaking at a rally in Philadelphia this Sunday, as campaigning
Americans continue to focus on the crisis of poverty and AIDS in Africa.

The rally is at 1:30 p.m. on Independence Mall, 5th and Market Streets, Philadelphia
PA (Rain location: The Trocadero, 1003 Arch Street) and other speakers include
NBA star Dikembe Mutombo, Philadelphia 76'ers President and GM Billy King, Grammy
award winning gospel artist Michael W. Smith and Ugandan Nurse Agnes Nyamayarwo.

You need to register to obtain an invitation to the event. More here


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