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UP SYNDROME - still #1


East Coast Premiere

Director: Duane Graves

United States, 2001, 82 min

Shooting Format:MiniDV

Festival Year:2001

Category:Documentary Feature

WINNER: Best Documentary

Cast:Rene Moreno

Crew:producers: AARON WEBB & LISA MORENO / TRISOMY FILMS cinematographer & editor: DUANE GRAVES score: RENE MORENO sound supervisor: DEREK LACEY

Sales:Trisomy Films - T: (512) 345-3404 - (210) 363-6874


University of Texas student Duane Graves chronicles his charismatic childhood chum Rene Moreno, a San Antonio, Texas, native with Down syndrome, in this playful, stirring, remarkably unique portrait documentary. Duane Graves grew up nine houses down from Rene, a charming young man born mentally handicapped. Inspired by his confidence, Graves quickly recruited him and the two spent their hot Texas summers shooting B-home movies: Graves manned the camera, Rene the fervent star. Now at the age of 24, Graves has returned to document one of the most important years in Rene's life. "Up Syndrome" follows Moreno during the pivotal year after his high school graduation; a time when his desire for independence has strengthened in a society that isn't sure it has a slot for people like him. "One day my dad called standing next to a dumpster full of film canisters," Graves recalls. "I made him climb in the trash and load them up. It turned out to be all 179 episodes of 'I Love Lucy' on 16mm. I sold them as a set on E-bay for $4,000 and made this documentary."

About the director

Duane Graves was born and raised in San Antonio, Texas. After graduating from a small film program at Texas A&M University in Corpus Christi, TX, he moved to Austin to continue his film studies at the University of Texas. Graves commuted to San Antonio on the weekends to complete his first feature film, "Up Syndrome."

BFF Alumni

Duane Graves' filmography

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