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Help finish ICEBOUND, a feature documentary about an Alaskan legend: how men and dogs raced lifesaving serum across the frozen arctic to save the town of Nome
Anker Productions
New York, New York
United States
1 Team Member

Thank you to everyone who has contributed!  

This site has been updated to allow for further help.   Please visit the updated web address:


In January 1925, more than thirty men, and at least 150 dogs, battled storms and life threatening cold weather, in a daring relay of antitoxin across the frozen wilderness to save the children of Nome, Alaska from a deadly outbreak of diphtheria.  

In the 90 years since then, the story has been told in many ways -- through the sensationalist tabloid media of the time, through storytelling and oral history passed down from one generation to the next, through numerous children's books, and the Spielberg animated movie, BALTO.   It is a story memorialized with statues and monuments in New York, Cleveland, Anchorage, Seward and elsewhere.   The spirit of the Serum Run is commemorated, in part, by the annual Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race.  

The story of the Serum Run is a legend -- an heroic testament to the human spirit, and to the indomitable achievements of the dogs of the far north.   

But beyond the legend, there is a tale that is far more complicated, filled with ironies, with tragedy, and with myth.   The story of ICEBOUND encompasses a layered history that, while uniquely Alaskan, speaks to a fascinating moment in American culture.  

Icebound tells the full story, accurately, for the first time.   Help us preserve this great Alaskan story, in a film that will reach audiences of children and adults around the world. 

After eight years of work, we are almost finished, an effort that has involved hundreds of people -- researchers, crew members, scholars, archivists, mushers, and citizens throughout the state of Alaska, particularly in the villages of Nenana, Galena, Unalakleet and the town of Nome.   We are hoping to find our last funds through this crowd funding effort, funds that will allow us to pay for the rights for archival images, footage, music, proceed with our last finishing processes, color correction, graphics and final mix, and plan for distribution.

It has been difficult to build support to allow the breath of research, and the extensive shooting necessary to bring the story to life.    We are just shy of funds needed. Your generosity will help finish the film, and will allow a broad distribution to enable it to reach a worldwide audience, and ultimately, through a subsequent educational distribution, will bring the story and its nuances to schools throughout the United States.

Thank you for your help. 



Click here to receive our newsletter that will include updates on the film's release. 




      "A breathless adventure story told with sophistication and fascinating detail."

                       STEVE LINDBECK, President, Alaska Public Telecommunications


ICEBOUND tells this true story through the authentic voices of Alaskans, including the last surviving children stricken with Diphtheria, elders from Nome and the Interior villages who were witness to the events, and descendants of the original mushers.  Others who appear include mushers George Attla, Dan Seavey, Howard Farley, and Richard Burmeister, historians Paul Ongtooguk, Stephen Haycox, Dirk Tordoff, Matt Ganley, Joan Antonson, Neal Gabler, Preston Jones, Kevin Keeler, journalists Michael Carey, Dermot Cole, Craig Medred, and many others. The production team also collected rare photographs, footage, and thousands of newspapers articles, in an attempt to separate fact from myth, and tell the full story of this true-life adventure for the first time. 

Now, with the recent addition of our narrator, the extraordinary and incomparable Sir Patrick Stewart, the film is nearing completion.   



We are grateful to our contributors to date, which include:

The National Endowment for the Humanities,The Rasmuson Foundation, the Iditarod Historic Trail Alliance, The Atwood Foundation, The Alaska Humanities Forum, The Bering Straits Native Corporation, Dr. Mary Totten, The Gottstein Family Foundation, and Gan-A'Yoo Ltd. Native Corporation.


ICEBOUND is produced and directed by Daniel Anker (Scottsboro: An American Tragedy; Imaginary Witness: Hollywood and the Holocaust; Music from the Inside Out).   It is co-produced by Tiffany Peckosh.   ICEBOUND is written by Daniel Anker and Susan Kim, and edited by Bruce Shaw (The Thin Blue LIne, Ken Burns' The Civil War, Imaginary Witness) and Jean Tsien, a.c.e (Dixie Chicks: Shut Up and Sing, Crouching Tiger, Please Vote for Me).  The Cinematographer is Tom Hurwitz, a.s.c (Valentino, the Last Emperor, Liberty, Woodstock, Dancemaker).   Additional Cinematography was done by Tom Pillifant, Joan Churchill and Michael Chin.   Alan Barker was the Sound Recordist.  Additional Alaskan crew includes Line Producer Bob Crockett and Grip/Gaffer Greg Kern, assisted by Gene Boyd.  Aerial photography was by Daniel Zatz.   Tyler Rhodes provided additional camerawork in the town of Nome.   Mushers included Aaron Burmeister, Bill Cotter, Donald Towarek, and Benedikt Beisch.   And more than 50 incredible dogs lent their patience and talent to the project.

The film received a prestigious National Endowment for the Humanities production grant in 2007.   Additional funding has been provided by:  The Rasmuson Foundation, The Iditarod HIstoric Trail Alliance,  The Atwood Foundation, The Alaska Humanities Forum, The Bering Straits Native Corporation, Dr. Mary Totten, the Gottstein Family Foundation, and Gana-A'Yoo Ltd.  It will be presented in France and Germany in co-production with Arte/ZDF of France/Germany and gebrueder beetz filmproduktion.

Numerous individuals and organizations throughout the state of Alaska have participated and been supportive of the project in a variety of ways, including: Judy Bittner, Paul Brown, Aaron Burmeister, Amanda Byrd, Shirley Cleaver, Terrence Cole, Ruth Coy, Al Crane, Dick Evans, Suzanne Evans, Lanie and Hugh Fleischer,  Matt Ganley, Larry Hausmann, Stephen Haycox, Maggie Halleran, Lori Henry, Sidney Huntington, Midi Johnson, Doug Katchatag, Cussy Kauer, Steven Lindbeck, Bill McCarty, Jr., Yale Metzger, Bruce Merrill, Hannah Moderow, Carolyn Muegge-Vaughan, Paddy Nollner, Mark Nordman, Henry Oyumick, Bruce Parham, Lee Poleske,  Leo Rasmussen, Gerry Riley, Susan Richmond, Chas St. George, Gay Salisbury, Laney Salisbury, Laura Samuelson, Agnes Sweetsir,  Donald Towarek, Candy Waugaman, Dave Worrell, Gary Zimmerman, Lauren Zwack, and the Alaska Film Office, the Alaska Native Heritage Center, AMIPA, the Nome Museum, the University of Fairbanks Library, the Anchorage Museum, the International Sled Dog Symposium, the Iditarod Trail Committee, the Aurora Inn, the Captain Cook Hotel, Pike's Lodge, The Rough Woods Inn, Sleep Inn of Unalakleet. 

We are grateful to the people of Nome, Unalakleet, Nenana, and Galena, for their unparalleled generosity.

Tax Deductible donations may also be made directly to API Arts and Outreach, a not-for-profit 501c3.   Please click here.  

Confirmation and receipt will be sent by email or mail.  

Checks may be mailed to:

API ARTS & OUTREACH - ICEBOUND, 18 W 21st Street, Suite 803, NY, NY 10010




Find This Campaign On
raised in 6 months
9% funded
No time left
$55,000 USD goal
Flexible Funding This campaign has ended and will receive all funds raised.
Campaign Closed
This campaign ended on March 31, 2013
Select a Perk
  • $10USD
    We'll keep you in the loop

    We'll keep you updated on special events, screenings in your area, the DVD release.

    5 claimed
  • $25USD
    A 'Thank You' on the website

    Listing on the movie website, as a "thank you" for your help

    6 claimed
  • $50USD
    Publicity Photograph

    A "Thank You" on the movie website, and a publicity photograph signed by director and members of the crew

    6 claimed
  • $100USD
    Tickets to AK Premiere

    2 Tickets to the Alaskan Premiere, along with a "Thank You" on the film's website

    11 claimed
  • $300USD
    DVDs plus Tickets to Premiere

    Any of the previous perks, plus a collection of signed DVDs of our previous films, IMAGINARY WITNESS, MUSIC FROM THE INSIDE OUT, SCOTTSBORO: AN AMERICAN TRAGEDY

    1 claimed
  • $500USD
    Vintage artifacts & documents

    Any of the previous perks, plus we would be pleased to offer a choice of relics from our research, which include a vintage 1925 "Balto" paperweight, and "Balto" postage stamps, original book. Or a collection of bound facsimiles of rare original documents, images and newspaper articles relating to the Serum Run.

    2 out of 20 claimed
  • $1,000USD
    Credit on the Film

    Any previous perk offered, plus a listing in the "Thank You's" in the film's credits

    2 claimed
  • $2,500USD
    Private Screening

    A Private Screening in your living room, followed by Q & A with director and members of the production team via SKYPE or in person.

    0 claimed
  • $10,000USD
    Prominent Funding Credit

    You've earned a significant and prominent funding credit on the film, and on advertising, educational materials, poster art, and DVD covers.

    0 claimed
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