WHITE LAKE — Local resident and UNC-Chapel Hill student Robert Kinlaw will get a jump-start to his career dreams of video production when his documentary, “White Lake – Remembering the Nation’s Safest Beach,” airs on public television on Thursday, June 25, at 10:15 p.m.
Kinlaw submitted the finished documentary to UNC-TV in May of 2014 and was offered a six-year broadcast contract. The documentary will air across North Carolina, parts of Tennessee, Virginia and South Carolina.
“This has been a challenging process, but I am so excited that the documentary has been received so well,” Kinlaw said. “My community has been so supportive.”
Kinlaw, a third-generation White Lake resident, has been interested in video since he was old enough to hold a camera. But it was his middle school exposure to the high-technology computer lab at the Clarkton School of Discovery in Bladen County that stirred his fascination with film-making and editing. Under the encouragement of teacher Stephanie Norris, Kinlaw began filming short stories and introducing special effects to film clips.
Throughout his middle and high school years, Kinlaw produced short movies, enlisting his friends as writers and actors, and using the local landscape as backgrounds.
As a high school junior at Harrells Christian Academy, Kinlaw began considering the possibility of scripting, filming, and editing a major project. With his familial ties to White Lake and knowledge of a colorful community history, Kinlaw began talking to local residents, researching history, collecting photographs, and compiling information. Through the assistance of a grant from the Bladen County Arts Council, Kinlaw purchased additional camera equipment to film at a higher quality.
The project was two years in the making. Editing 10 hours of interviews and 100 photographs into a 43-minute video summary was a tedious task.
“Looking back, it was far more complicated, expensive, and time-consuming than I ever imagined it would be,” stated Kinlaw. “I started filming interviews in the summer between my junior and senior years of high school. But it was not until Spring Break of my freshman year at Carolina that I was able to finish the project.”
The documentary travels through decades of history with local interviews, vintage photographs, and archived articles, bringing to life the extraordinary accomplishments of a small lake community. The video is filmed in high-definition and on-site at White Lake.
At $30 each, DVDs are available for purchase at the Town Hall at White Lake or from www.whitelakemovie.com. Kinlaw is available for guest presentations. For information about the project, visit www.robertkinlaw.com, or call 910-876-2403.