• Seven Groundbreaking Futuristic Shorts Reveal Visions of Tomorrow's America

    Season Three of FUTURESTATES Debuts April 3, 2012 on FUTURESTATES.tv, PBS.org, and PBS iPhone and iPad Apps

    (SAN FRANCISCO, CA – March 21, 2012) — What will happen to our families, our rights, and our economy in the not-so-distant future? These are just some of the questions explored in the third season of FUTURESTATES, an online series of sci-fi shorts set to launch April 3, 2012. Produced by the Independent Television Service (ITVS), FUTURESTATES presents narratives created by established filmmakers and emerging talents that transform today’s complex social issues into visions about what life in America will be like in decades to come. The shorts will be available for free via streaming video on futurestates.tv and simultaneously on pbs.org, and PBS iPhone and iPad applications.

    “This year heralds radical new directions for FUTURESTATES, on multiple fronts,” said Karim Ahmad, senior programming manager. “We are featuring exciting new futuristic visions from cutting edge indie filmmakers, such as Jennifer Phang, Tina Mabry, and Patrick Stettner, which not only advance the FUTURESTATES series mandate, but also contribute to ITVS's Women & Girls Lead campaign, a public media initiative designed to support and sustain a growing movement to empower women, their communities, and future generations.”

    In addition to the seven premieres, season three includes the launch of two FUTURESTATES interactive projects: Wish for the Future, a multi-phase, participatory storytelling endeavor from transmedia producer Lance Weiler, and Vision Machine, a digital comic for the iPad based on the groundbreaking graphic novel by writer/director Greg Pak (Mister Green, FUTURESTATES season one).

    “We greenlit these two interactive projects as a way to expand engagement and public discourse around the series and social problems in general,” said Ahmad. “It's part of ITVS's larger strategy to expand into the digital space, and FUTURESTATES is the ideal platform to do that, given its already-digital footprint.”

    FUTURESTATES launches on April 3rd with Advantageous, a film from award-winning filmmaker Jennifer Phang (Half-Life) that follows Gwen, the spokesperson for a radical technology allowing people to overcome their natural disadvantages and begin life anew. But when her job and family are in crisis, will she undergo the procedure? Next up, Mo Perkins’ Laura Keller - NB (April 10) stars Amber Benson (Buffy the Vampire Slayer) and Martin Starr (Party Down, Freaks and Geeks) as a couple living in a world with global population at an extreme high. With federal fertility lotteries now determining who can and can’t reproduce, Laura’s faith in the system is shaken when she learns that she will be permanently sterilized.

    Other contributors include internationally award-winning director Patrick Stettner (The Business of Strangers, The Night Listener) who directs Gunny (April 17), a short about a young female soldier returning home after a traumatic tour of duty, and taking a new medication that can selectively erase memories. Charlie 13 (April 24), a film by Michael McMillian, follows Charlie Tuttle on the eve of his 13th birthday — will he submit to a government-mandated tracking implant, or answer a more dangerous call to adventure?

    The series continues in May with Tina Mabry’s Crossover (May 1), starring Michael Hyatt (The Wire) and Lynn A. Henderson (ER). Set in a future where schools are segregated by economic status, a struggling mother must decide whether to sell her own organs to give her children a better education. In The 6th World (May 8), directed by Nanobah Becker, Navajo Astronaut Tazbah Redhouse is a pilot on the first spaceship sent to colonize Mars; but a mysterious dream the night before her departure indicates there may be more to her mission than she understands. Ending the season is Trevin Matcek’s Life Begins at Rewirement (May 15), the story of Simon Ender, a man who struggles with his decision to commit his elderly mother into a revolutionary nursing home alternative that has solved the problem of rapidly growing senior citizen overpopulation.

    In addition to the online premieres, ITVS and PBS will host weekly online social screening events every Friday beginning April 6, 2012 at 11 AM PT/2PM ET to provide fans an opportunity to discuss the episode premiered that week in real time with fellow fans, filmmakers, and guests.

    For more information on all seven episodes and to watch previous seasons and trailers, visit: futurestates.tv.

    CONTACT Krissy Bailey, ITVS 415-356-8383 x 254 krissy_bailey@itvs.org