Shulman-produced documentary to air on Seattle PBS station

On the Brink will soon be on your television.

The documentary film that explores efforts to save the vanishing soul of Seattle’s Central District will air on Seattle PBS station KCTS 9 on Sunday, November 17 at 10:30 p.m. and again on Tuesday, November 19 at 7 p.m.

On the Brink is directed and produced by Jeff Shulman, the Marion B. Ingersoll Professor of Marketing at the University of Washington Foster School of Business.

Shulman is also the creator and host of the award-winning Seattle Growth Podcast.

In fact, Shulman’s debut documentary film was inspired by the podcast, which has explored Seattle’s ongoing transformation and examined its repercussions on transportation, real estate, emergency services, healthcare, small business, music, arts, culture, professional sports and homelessness—nearly every facet of life in the Emerald City.

Shulman became especially intrigued by what is being lost amid this unprecedented economic boom. Top of the list of at-risk Seattle cultural treasures is the Central District, the once-vibrant heart and soul of Seattle’s African American community.

As the incubator of American cultural icons Ray Charles, Ernestine Anderson, Quincy Jones, Jimi Hendrix and Sir Mix-a-Lot, the CD has historical significance.

“More than that,” Shulman says, “I came to learn of a deep connection the residents held with the neighborhood and with each other. The Central District draws parallels to communities around the country and is a story that needs to be told.”

To tell that story, he collaborated with Steven Fong, an up-and-coming local filmmaker, to interlace historic footage and new conversations with long-time residents, community leaders and neighborhood business owners—many who have been  supported by the Foster School’s Consulting and Business Development Center).

If the documentary tells a cautionary tale, it’s also filled with hope and determination.

On the Brink tells a universal story of a struggle to hold on to a sense of community in the face of change,” Shulman says. “It also tells the story of individuals from that community who are determined to play a role in defining its future, and finding hope instead of despair.”

You can also catch upcoming screenings of the film in Seattle, Chicago and New York.

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