Gideon's Army



Sundance Institute | Candescent Award

Gideon’s Army was a Candescent Award winner at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival. The Candescent Award was created by Lilly Hartley in partnership with the Sundance Institute Documentary Film Program (DFP) and is awarded to powerful social issue films that have been supported during production by the DFP and that premiere at the Sundance Film Festival. Candescent is a supporter of the Sundance Institute and believes in the exceptional mentors, filmmakers and leaders that create a sense of community through the Sundance Institute DFP.


Gideon's Army follows Travis Williams, Brandy Alexander and June Hardwick, three young public defenders who are part of a small group of idealistic lawyers in the Deep South challenging the assumptions that drive a criminal justice system strained to the breaking point. Backed by mentor Jonathan “Rap” Rapping, a charismatic leader who heads the Southern Public Defender Training Center, they struggle against long hours, low pay and staggering caseloads so common that even the most committed often give up in their first year.

The film is a gift to the nation from a woman named Dawn Porter... —The Atlantic






Dawn Porter was named one of the 2012 Doc Hot Shots 15 Emerging Directors to Watch.  She is the founder of Trilogy Films, whose projects include Spies of the Mississippi for Arte Germany and PBS, and a documentary about celebrity chef Alexandra Guarnaschelli for the Cooking Channel.  Dawn is a graduate of Swarthmore College and the Georgetown University Law Center.


Julie Goldman, Producer



Julie Goldman is the founder of Motto Pictures and a PGA Producer of the Year nominee.  In 2011, she produced Buck, which won the Sundance US Documentary Audience Award and was one of 2011′s top 5 grossing documentaries.  Julie was Executive Producer of In the Shadow of the Moon, which was released by THINKFilm and has several films currently in production.