Sierra Pettengill, The Rifleman, 2020

Sierra Pettengill, The Rifleman, 2020

e-flux / Field of Vision

Sierra Pettengill, The Rifleman (trailer), 2020. Courtesy Field of Vision.

May 10, 2021
Sierra Pettengill, The Rifleman, 2020
Online premiere
May 10–17, 2021

Field of Vision and e-flux are very pleased to announce the online premiere of Sierra Pettengill’s new documentary short The Rifleman.

The film premieres on e-flux Video & Film on Monday, May 10 at 12 pm EST, where it will stream for one week alongside a written Q&A with the filmmaker conducted by film scholar Christian Rossipal. Watch it here.

The online release will follow on Field of Vision later this month.

Sierra Pettengill, The Rifleman, 2020
18:34 minutes

The Rifleman delves deep into the origins of the National Rifleman Association (NRA) through astonishing archival footage spanning decades, revealing the modern organization’s roots in the backlash against the civil rights movement. From the early 1950s at the US-Mexico border to the NRA in the post–civil rights era, The Rifleman examines the life of one man who changed the trajectory of the gun organization forever, meticulously revealing the xenophobic and racial attitudes that belie the NRA’s so-called “pro-Second Amendment” stance of today.

Sierra Pettengill’s work focuses on the warped narratives of the American past. Most recently, she directed the “Big Dan’s” episode of the Netflix documentary series Trial by Media. Her 2017 feature-length film, the all-archival documentary The Reagan Show, premiered at the Locarno Film Festival before airing on CNN. Her 2018 all-archival short film, Graven Image, aired on POV and is held at the Legacy Museum in Montgomery, Alabama, and her 2020 short Business of Thought premiered at the Sheffield Documentary Festival. In 2013 she produced the Academy Award–nominated film Cutie & the Boxer, which also won an Emmy Award for Best Documentary, and co-directed Town Hall for PBS. She has also worked as an archival researcher for many filmmakers including Jim Jarmusch, Mathieu Amalric, and Mike Mills. Pettengill was a Sundance Institute Art of Nonfiction Fellow, and a fellow at the Yaddo and MacDowell colonies. She writes frequently about film for publications including frieze and Film Comment.

Founded in 2015, Field of Vision is a filmmaker-driven visual journalism and documentary unit that commissions and supports filmmakers and artists with developing and ongoing stories around the globe. Recent projects have included the Oscar®-winning feature American Factory; the Oscar®-nominated features Strong Island and Hale County This Morning; This Evening; the Oscar®-nominated shorts Do Not SplitA Night at the Garden, and In the Absence; the Emmy-winning feature Crime + Punishment; and the Emmy-nominated feature The Surrender. Field of Vision has an ongoing commitment to supporting innovation and diversity and as such 54% of Field of Vision–supported films have been directed by women and 43% by filmmakers of color. Since its foundating, Field of Vision has commissioned, produced, and/or supported more than 45 features, 5 episodic series, and 85 short films. This work has premiered at Sundance, Cannes, Toronto, Berlin, SXSW, Hot Docs, Tribeca, and IDFA, among many other festivals garnering numerous accolades and awards. An emphasis on short films has allowed Field of Vision to support fast responses to unfolding political moments in countries including Brazil, France, Hong Kong, India, Japan, The Philippines, Russia, South Korea, South Africa, Spain, and Sudan.

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e-flux  / Field of Vision
May 10, 2021

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