SANTA CLARITA, Calif. (May 22, 2008) – “We are so lucky that we have Alaska … everything is different here – it is all so unique.” This view from Denali National Park Ranger Patrick Gamman is one of 12 Alaska voices featured in “The Heart of Alaska,” a dramatic new video produced by Princess Cruises. This production has already received widespread praise from the film and travel communities, and has been honored with acceptance into two film festivals.
Shot exclusively by Princess in high-definition format to showcase the Princess cruisetour experience, “The Heart of Alaska” beautifully depicts the land, wildlife and people of Alaska, with interviews from some of the people who make the state unique, and who tell a compelling story of life in the untamed wilderness of Alaska’s interior.
Available exclusively from Princess, the 26-minute film was photographed and directed by Princess Video Editor Scott Martin. Filmed over nine days last summer in Alaska, the production was coordinated by Becky Buxton, manager of Princess Tours in Alaska. The video will be shown on board Princess ships in Alaska and can be purchased on the ships and at Princess’ five Alaska wilderness lodges. “The Heart of Alaska” is the first of a series of Princess videos taking a unique look at many of the company’s destinations.
“The Heart of Alaska” has been accepted into the First Take Film Festival and the prestigious New York Independent Film & Video Festival, where it will compete this summer in the best documentary category.
“We wanted to create something that really captures the spirit of this extraordinary destination – particularly the diverse people who make the state so unique,” said Charlie Ball, president of Princess Tours. “This is a unique production for us – it not only gives our guests a stunning look at so many aspects of this amazing place, it does so in brilliant high definition. We believe that this new view of the Great Land easily outshines the quality of the traditional Alaska travelogue.”
The documentary offers a unique introduction to the wonders of the state as it is seen through the eyes of Alaskans. Viewers will meet rangers from both Denali and Wrangell St. Elias National Parks, Alaska natives, homesteaders and dog mushers who share an insiders’ perspective of life in the 49th state. Other voices include a bush pilot, a captain from Fairbanks’ iconic riverboat and a mountain climber.
The film also brings the audience up close to the wildlife of Denali National Park, including bears, moose, dall sheep, and caribou. Soaring photography takes viewers high above the world’s tallest peaks, including ‘The Great One,’ Mt. McKinley.
“The Heart of Alaska” tells its story through many Alaskan voices, each with a unique perspective on life in the state. Among the observations shared on screen are:
“Being Alaskan to me means being connected to everything around you. My dad had always told me that people live the way the land tells them to – they follow the rhythm of the waters that they’re nearest.” – Alaska Native Quentin Simeon.
“We have glaciers the size of states – the Malaspina Glacier is the size of Rhode Island” – Wrangell St. Elias National Park Ranger Kelly L. Vandenberg.
“It is quite a humbling place because we quickly realize just how small we are in the scheme of things” – Mountain Climbing Guide Laurent Dick.
“People here do what they do – they don’t retire. They have a lifestyle and they live it to their last day” – Homesteader Janel Porterfield.
“They teach me something constantly. No two days are alike when you live with 18 dogs” – Musher John C. Fowler.
“Still today when I see a moose alongside the road, I have to stop and look at it myself as if it’s the first one I ever saw” – Wildlife Conservation Center Executive Director Mike Miller.
“The Heart of Alaska” video also includes special features on the Princess cruisetour program, the Alaska Native Heritage Center, Inside Denali, and trailers for the Heart of Alaska.
Additional information about Princess Cruises is available through a professional travel agent, by calling 1-800-PRINCESS, or by visiting the company’s website at www.princess.com.