March 4, 2020
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Donna Scott-Martin
(301) 699-3500, ext. 6152
Greenbelt, MD – Dolly Parton’s 30+ year legacy of supporting early literacy across the country is celebrated in a new documentary, “The Library That Dolly Built” (2020, not rated, 72 min.), which will receive its local premiere at the Old Greenbelt Theatre on April 2 at 8 pm. The film is a feature-length documentary, covering the history, impact, and future of Dolly Parton’s worldwide book gifting program. The family-friendl screening will be free and open to the public, and it is co-presented by the Prince George’s County Memorial Library System (PGCMLS) and the Old Greenbelt Theater, in association with Land Grant Films. Mayor Colin A. Byrd of Greenbelt, Maryland and Roberta Phillips, CEO, Prince George’s County Memorial Library System, will deliver opening remarks.
“The Library That Dolly Built” showcases the music of Dolly Parton and is narrated by actress and author Danica McKellar. It includes footage of behind-the-scenes operations for Imagination Library, original interviews, and depicts the profound impact of providing 100 million free books to children around the world. John Gibeau who runs an Imagination Library program in rural Minnesota explains through tears how some children in his community only have access to books because of the program. His town has no library, school or bookstore.
Through the Books from Birth program, PGCMLS partners with Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library to provide one free book per month to children under the age of five who reside in Prince George’s County. Children are able to build their personal libraries and develop advance early literacy skills in preparation for entering school. The PGCMLS Books from Birth program has provided 15,119 children with over 217,500 free books, demonstrating the tremendous local reach of the Imagination Library.
Dolly Parton has gifted her story, her music, her inspiration and her Imagination Library to people throughout the world. Her Imagination Library, however, will be remembered as the sweetest gift of all. Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library is now active in all 50 states in the U.S. and five countries and delivers more than 1.5 million free, age-appropriate books to children every month.
About Prince George’s County Memorial Library System
The Prince George’s County Memorial Library System (PGCMLS), consisting of 19 branches, offers strategies for lifelong learning. Skills development library resources include Brainfuse’s HelpNow and JobNow, MANGO Languages, ArtistWorks for Libraries, and Learning Express Library. Early literacy resources are Ready 2 Read Centers, Ready 2 Read Backpacks, ABCmouse, Beanstack, Playaway Launchpads, and PebbleGo. All these services are free with your PGCMLS library card. Also, enjoy 3D printing, Minecraft, DREAM (Digital Resources for Electronic Applications in Media) Lab, chess clubs and TAG (Teen Action Group), free at your library. Engage with us on social media: Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, Instagram, YouTube, and LinkedIn. Check out our mobile apps and learn more about what your library has to offer at www.pgcmls.info.
About Old Greenbelt Theatre
The Old Greenbelt Theatre is an historic movie theatre located in the heart of Greenbelt, Maryland, showing contemporary films in addition to offering a schedule of diverse and community-based film programming. Completed in 1938, the Old Greenbelt Theatre is an iconic building in Greenbelt, a federally planned New-Deal-era community. The Theatre is remarkable not only for its original design but also for having survived eras of economic instability without being split into a duplex or a different kind of venue altogether, as has been the fate of so many historic single-screen cinemas. The building is owned by the City of Greenbelt, and the nonprofit organization Friends of Greenbelt Theatre now operates the Old Greenbelt Theatre. The lobby and facade of the Old Greenbelt Theatre was remodeled in 2014-2015. The original auditorium was renovated (with new seats, screen, upgraded sound, and other improvements) in 2019. This year, the Friends of Greenbelt Theatre are adding a permanent, state-of-the-art Screening Room and Media Arts Literacy Lab in the storefront next door to the cinema at 125 Centerway, part of its Beyond the Screen Initiative.
About PGCMLS Books from Birth
Books from Birth was launched in 2017 as a partnership between the Prince George’s County Memorial Library System and Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library. The program provides children under the age of five who reside in Prince George’s County with one free book per month to build a home library and support early literacy. Books from Birth and PGCMLS’ services are essential to increasing early literacy, promoting kindergarten readiness, and ensuring that Prince George’s County is a child-friendly county. Families can register for Books from Birth at pgcmls.info/freebooks.
About Land Grant Films
Land Grant Films is a documentary program housed in the School of Journalism and Electronic Media at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. The program’s mission is to provide UT students with real-world experience in documentary storytelling while providing local non- profit organizations with videos assets that can be used to raise awareness and funds. Land Grant Films builds strong service-learning relationships with local non-profit organizations and works with its students to tell the stories of the people and issues affected by these organizations. Numerous UT students worked on the crew of this film, making it - like the Imagination Library - an amazing educational opportunity. For more information visit landgrantfilms.org. About The Imagination Library Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library is a book gifting program that mails free, high-quality books to children from birth until they begin school, no matter their family’s income. After launching in 1995, the program grew quickly. First books were only distributed to children living in Sevier County, Tennessee where Dolly grew up. It became such a success that in 2000 a national replication effort was underway. By 2003, Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library had mailed one million books. It would prove to be the first of over 135 million books gifted to children around the world. Dolly’s home state of Tennessee pledged to pursue statewide coverage in 2004 and global expansion was on the horizon. After the United States, the program launched in Canada in 2006 followed by the United Kingdom in 2007, Australia in 2013 and the Republic of Ireland in 2019.
About The Dollywood Foundation
The Dollywood Foundation was created in 1988 by Dolly Parton to inspire the children in her home county to achieve educational success. Initial efforts focused on decreasing the dropout rate in the county’s high school. In the early 90’s Dolly promised every 7th-grade and 8th-grade student she would personally give them $500 if they graduated from high school. This effort, called the Buddy Program, reduced the dropout rate for these two classes from 35% to 6%. More importantly, the program catalyzed the community to provide additional resources to sustain this improvement in the dropout rate. In 2016, The Dollywood Foundation led Dolly's efforts to assist families who lost their homes during the devastating wildfires which swept through her home county. The Foundation's My People Fund distributed over $12,000,000 In direct assistance to over 900 families In Sevier County. For more information visit dollywoodfoundation.org
The Dollywood Company consists of the 150-acre Dollywood theme park; the 35-acre Dollywood’s Splash Country; Dollywood’s DreamMore Resort and Spa; and Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Cabins. As unique as its namesake and owner Dolly Parton, Dollywood is the 2010 Applause Award winner, the theme park industry’s highest accolade; winner of more than 35 Golden Ticket Awards; and recipient of 26 Brass Ring Awards for Live Entertainment (more than any other theme park in the world). The park is located near Great Smoky Mountains National Park and has been named a top three US theme park by USA Today on multiple occasions. Dollywood is open nine months a year (mid-March through early January) and offers rides and attractions, shows, and crafters authentic to the East Tennessee region. For more information, call 1-800-Dollywood or visit dollywood.com.
Abramorama is the preeminent global theatrical distribution and rights management partner for documentary and music films and is recognized for the consistent high quality of its work on award winning feature films. An innovator in the focused, personalized form of film marketing, promotion, distribution and event cinema, Abramorama provides invaluable alternatives to filmmakers while continuing to trail-blaze exciting new pathways for filmmakers to find their audience. Over the course of nearly 20 years, Abramorama has successfully distributed and marketed hundreds of films, including Ron Howard’s Grammy Award®-winning The Beatles: Eight Days A Week – The Touring Years; Stanley Nelson’s Miles Davis: Birth of The Cool; Atlantic Records and Melanie Martinez’ K-12; John McDermott’s Jimi Hendrix: Electric Church; Amir Bar- Lev's Long Strange Trip – The Untold Story of the Grateful Dead; Tabbert Fiiller’s The Public Image Is Rotten; Danny Clinch and Pearl Jam’s Let’s Play Two; Corbett Redford and Green Day’s Turn It Around: The Story of East Bay Punk; John Scheinfeld’s Chasing Trane – The John Coltrane Documentary; Roberta Grossman and Nancy Spielberg’s Who Will Write Our History; Brett Bern's BANG! The Bert Berns Story; Brett Morgen and National Geographic’s seminal Jane; Charles Ferguson’s Time To Choose; Asif Kapadia’s Senna; Neil Young’s vast catalog of Bernard Shakey Productions; Cameron Crowe’s Pearl Jam Twenty; Sacha Gervasi’s Anvil! The Story of Anvil; Banksy’s Academy Award® nominated Exit Through the Gift Shop; the surprise indie hit Awake: The Life of Yogananda; Laurie Anderson’s astonishing New York Times critics’ pick, Heart of a Dog; National Board of Review Winner Listen to Me Marlon; 2016 Documentary Academy Award®-nominee and IDA Best Documentary Winner The Look of Silence; and the episodic multi-platform series Deconstructing The Beatles. Abramorama is a founding partner of The Seventh Art Stand program, an act of cinematic solidarity against Islamophobia, that ran in more than 50 theaters across the United States in May of 2017. Abramorama recently launched a conscious films imprint, Mangurama, alongside its music-centric film fund focused on the global release of iconic music documentaries. For more information visit abramorama.com.