Big Daddy Autism is a heart-felt documentary film about the inspiring relationship between Ken Siri, a divorced father with sole-custody of his son, Alex, a non-verbal fifteen-year-old on the autism spectrum. New York City, with all its beauty and chaos, is the backdrop for this tale of two men searching for ways to connect with the world around them.
With the help of technology, Alex is an emerging communicator learning alternative methods to verbal speaking. He is finding ways to express his wants and needs and, touchingly, to tell his father he loves him for the very first time. Ken is hoping the time has come to add to his life with Alex and autism. After a six year hiatus, he considers the New York City dating scene - an intimidating prospect at the best of times - but Ken is ready to risk his heart for the chance to share his life. We hope that this film inspires you by featuring a slice of New York city life that is original, moving, and beautiful.
Ken and Alex show how determination and a positive attitude can overcome the most challenging circumstances; everyday, they demonstrate how to live life with heart, passion and beaming smiles. Our amazing team has been shooting since November and we have shot close to half the film, mostly calling on favors from our community that have helped us get going. It's a story that needs telling and we want to keep the cameras rolling! Your donation is sincerely appreciated.
We need your support to complete the filming of this documentary! Our team needs to raise $55,000 to rent camera and sound equipment, hire our Cinematographer and Director, Editor, Assistant Editor, and 2 Production Assistants on the autism spectrum Our goal is to enter our film into major film festivals, and then to get it distributed as widely as possible! We believe that Big Daddy Autism has a BIG life and we want to give it all the opportunities to touch as many hearts as possible!
We have employment opportunities for two awesome PA's on the autism spectrum to join our team. This is a great opportunity to learn about film making and participate in the process of making an incredible documentary!
KEN SIRI author, advocate, and entrepreneur, is the single father of a 16-year-old boy with autism in New York City. Ken spent 15 years on Wall Street as a healthcare analyst and is the Founder and Chairman of Consilium Global Research, a Wall Street advisory firm that helps under-followed companies achieve recognition in the investment community. The author of Cutting-Edge Therapies for Autism (now in its fourth edition) and 101 Tips for the Parents of Boys with Autism, Ken blogs for Psychology Today and is a passionate voice within the autism community speaking at autism related conferences and has been interviewed on local and nationally syndicated radio, print, and television. Ken is a board member of the Atlas Foundation for Autism and the National Autism Association NY Metro Chapter where he serves as Chair of the Programming Committee.
ALEX SIRI is a New York City teenager with autism who is presently non-verbal. Alex attends school in Harlem and daily inspires his father. He is battling being non-verbal, having Inflammatory Bowel Disease and sensory challenges with fortitude and a sense of humor. Alex enjoys hiking, swinging and swimming. He tolerates running with his dad. Alex is learning to more effectively communicate with the world and is a master of YouTube.
DIRECTOR/PRODUCER: Aaron Feinstein is a film/theatre director and arts educator for people of all abilities. Aaron has created sensory friendly programming for children with autism and disabilities at The Brooklyn Museum and The Brooklyn Children's Museum with his company Actionplay, and has directed the Miracle Project New York's inclusive theatre and music programming at the 92nd Street Y, Rebecca School, and Educational Alliance among many other leading schools, arts, and performance institutions.
DIRECTOR OF PHOTOGRAPHY: Nick Morgulis is a New York City-based award-winning Director and Cinematographer. Nick's films have been featured and won awards at the Houston International Film Festival, Sarasota Film Festival, and Crystal Reel Festival in Orlando. Most recently, his documentary, Closing the Fountain of Youth, won gold at the Houston WorldFest for best historical documentary. In 2013, Nick was cinematographer on three feature-length films and one narrative feature. Nick will be directing two feature-length films in the coming year. Currently, Nick is directing the international tour documentary for the band "KONGOS". Nick holds a BFA in Digital Filmmaking from the Ringling College of Art and Design. Nick is passionate about filmmaking that sheds light on stories that need to be told. www.nickmorgulis.com
ASSOCIATE PRODUCER: Sara Hunter Orr is an applied theatre artist and disability rights activist. Sara currently serves as the Associate Director of Education at Making Books Sing, and a Theatre Instructor for the Miracle Project New York. Sara has worked onstage as an actor and a teaching artist at several regional theatres across the country including including People’s Light and Theatre Company, Syracuse Stage, and Asolo Repertory Theatre. Sara holds a BFA in Acting and a Minor in Education Studies from Syracuse University and an MA in Applied Theatre from the City University of New York. She is dedicated to engaging young people through accessible and inclusive theatre practices.
ASSOCIATE PRODUCER: Meghan Thompson is a novelist and freelancer, whose experience includes writing for Cutting Edge Treatments for Autism, researching for US News and World Report and Democratic political campaigns, writing and editing for Fortune 100 companies, and teaching at the University of Connecticut. Shortly after graduating from Cornell University, she worked on Wall Street - her career there lasted just a year, but it sparked a friendship and collaboration with Ken Siri that has lasted well over a decade. She is proud to be part of Big Daddy Autism!
Trailer Editor: Sierra Soto
Graphic Design: Cherlyn Russo
Special Thanks: Josh Millrod, Internet Strategist; Chris Iverson, Editor