AUSTIN, Texas and Washington, DC (June 25, 2011) —Whole Foods Market, leading retailer of natural and organic foods and AFI-Discovery Channel Silverdocs Festival, the nation’s leading documentary festival, announced the two $25,000 awardees of their $50,000 grant program for filmmakers with feature films at varying stages of development – from conception through completion.  The two awardees are:

Margaret Brown

(ORDER OF MYTHS, BE HERE TO LOVE ME: A FILM ABOUT TOWNES VAN ZANDT) for THE GREAT INVISIBLE exploring the effects of the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill and resulting moratorium and their impact on her hometown of Mobile Alabama and the Gulf of Mexico.  The film looks at the global oil economy through the lens of characters that work in the oil and fishing industries on the Gulf Coast.

Ian Cheney

(KING CORN, THE GREENING OF SOUTHIE) for BLUESPACE, which explores the degradation and renewal of urban waterways.  With more than half the world’s population now crammed into cities, the way we use water – as a place to grow food, as a method of transportation, as a source of renewable energy – will plunge viewers into the midst of the struggle to rethink this most overlooked resource.

“AFI-Discovery Channel Silverdocs has a history of showcasing the most compelling documentaries about the issues and ideas that shape our contemporary culture and we’re thrilled to support filmmakers in the development and completion stages in collaboration with Whole Foods Market,” says Sky Sitney, Festival Director. “These two filmmakers are incredible visionaries with proven talent and we cold not be more pleased to inaugurate the grant with their compelling projects.”

The Whole Foods Market and Silverdocs grant supports documentary filmmakers who bring a passionate, balanced, and artistic vision to films in various stages of production that explore issues related to the planet. A portion of tickets sales from the “Whole Foods Market Do Something Reel” Film Festival helped fund the grant.

“We believe that the festival and the grant program puts a focus on films that speak to our mission as a company and to the values of our shoppers,” said Marci Frumkin, marketing and project director of Do Something Reel Film Festival for Whole Foods Market. “The grant recipients that we selected, in conjunction with Silverdocs, are creating passionate and provocative films that we think will make people really see how small everyday choices can have a huge impact on the health and future of our planet.”


About Whole Foods Market®

Founded in 1980 in Austin, Texas, Whole Foods Market (, NASDAQ: WFMI), is the leading natural and organic food retailer. As America’s first national certified organic grocer, Whole Foods Market was named “America’s Healthiest Grocery Store” by Health magazine. The company's motto, “Whole Foods, Whole People, Whole Planet”™ captures its mission to ensure customer satisfaction and health, Team Member excellence and happiness, enhanced shareholder value, community support and environmental improvement. Thanks to the company’s nearly 60,000 Team Members, Whole Foods Market has been ranked as one of the “100 Best Companies to Work For” in America by FORTUNE magazine for 14 consecutive years. In fiscal year 2010, the company had sales of more than $9 billion and currently has more than 300 stores in the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom.

About AFI-Discovery Channel Silverdocs


AFI-Discovery Channel Silverdocs Documentary Festival is a six-day internationally recognized event that honors excellence in filmmaking, supports the diverse voices and free expression of independent storytellers and celebrates the power of documentary to improve our understanding of the world. Now in its eighth year, the 2010 festival runs June 20–27 at the AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center in the Washington, DC area. The 2010 Festival featured

102 films representing 54 countries

and attracted over 27,000 attendees, including the influential audiences of the nation’s capital and media professionals from around the world. The concurrent five-day International Documentary Conference presents thought-provoking presentations and engages a diverse group of over 1,000 filmmakers and industry leaders concerned with the future of non-fiction storytelling, production and distribution. For more information, go to