‘Have You Heard About Greg?’ has preview benefit screening at AFSC
Have You Heard About Greg? is the new documentary from Steve Ecclesine. The prolific producer is making his directorial debut with a story that’s equal parts heartbreaking and inspiring. The story, of course, is that of journalist Greg O’Brien and his battle with early on-set Alzheimer’s.
The documentary is set to have a premiere benefit screening at the Alzheimer’s Family Support Center of Cape Cod (AFSC) first Virtual Alzheimer’s Day of Culture on Saturday, October 16 in Provincetown, MA. Fortunately, for those not in the area, it can be viewed online by registering here. The premiere benefit screening will be followed by a live panel with O’Brien and Ecclesine, and donations made in support of the affected families and individuals in the region who have to contend with Alzheimer’s.
The documentary has already drummed up a lot for the Alzheimer’s support community. The trailer premiered October 13 at the UsAgainstAlzheimer’s 8th Annual Trish Vradenburg Gala, in Washington DC. That event was attended by former U.S. Surgeon General Dr. David Satcher, actors Billy Crystal and Jean Smart, and neuroscientist/author Lisa Genova. It ultimately raised an estimated $550,000 for US Against Alzheimer’s.
Have You Heard About Greg? details O’Brien’s career as an investigative reporter, a best-selling author, and a public speaker. It parallels these impressive stops with the various health scares he’s undergone, including a prostate cancer diagnosis and a bicycling accident that prompted early-onset Alzheimer’s at age 59. O’Brien has done everything in his power to fight the disease, in spite of a major spinal surgery.
The documentary offers a frank yet funny portrait of O’Brien as he contends with his surgery. It showcases the man’s courage and spirit, particularly when faced with some devastating news. The doc also touches on the devastating impact that Alzheimer’s has left on O’Brien’s family members, as it has claimed the lives of his father, mother, grandfather, and uncles before him.
Cherishing and rationing “QTR”—Quality Time Remaining—O’Brien faces his journey with authenticity, humor, hope, and a ferocious courage against this invisible enemy. The film captures a heartfelt story of a disease that afflicts 60 million people worldwide and affects hundreds of millions more, yet remains poorly understood, researched, and funded.
Ecclesine was inspired to make the doc after reading O’Brien’s award-winning book, On Pluto: Inside the Mind of Alzheimer’s. He felt the subject matter and novel approach would make for a compelling topic, and wound up working on the project for an estimated three years. The documentary is scheduled to play at festivals in 2021/2022, and general theaters starting in February 2022.
Follow AFSC on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or YouTube. Keep up with Have You Heard About Greg? on Facebook, Instagram or their official website.