The first urban screening of the documentary film “Farmland” was held April 17 at the 2014 Tribeca Film Festival. The film, directed by Academy Award winner James Moll, tells the story of six young farmers and ranchers across the United States, and gives the public a first-hand look at life on a farm.

“In ‘Farmland,’ audiences will hear thoughts and opinions about agriculture, but not from me, and not from a narrator,” Moll said. “They’re from the mouths of the farmers and ranchers themselves.”

Leighton Cooley, a poultry producer in Georgia and one of the farmers featured in the film, said he agreed to participate in the project because it is important to reach out to consumers and show them how their food is really produced. “Any chance we get to respond to misconceptions about agriculture we need to take. This film was not only a chance to tell folks what we do and how we treat our animals, but to show them,” Cooley said.  He added the film is aimed at those folks who would never have the opportunity to visit a farm and talk with a farmer. 

Ryan Veldhuizen, a pork producer in Minnesota, said the most important message he wants the New York City folks to take away from the movie is that their food is produced by “people that have families just like everyone else.” 

In addition to appearing at the Tribeca Film Festival, “Farmland” was selected to be in competition at the Cleveland International Film Festival, the Atlanta Film Festival, the Nashville Film Festival and the Newport Beach Film Festival. The film will be released nationally on May 1 and will be distributed via D&E Entertainment in more than 60 major markets. Numerous national exhibitors will be carrying the film, including Regal Cinemas, Marcus Theatres, Carmike Cinemas, Landmark Theatres and many key independent theaters.

The film was made with the cooperation of the U.S. Farmers & Ranchers Alliance.