Dir. Kurt Kuenne
In Theaters 10/31/08 On DVD 02/24/09 Non-Theatrical/Institutional use available 02/24/09 Poster available 05/11/09
On November 5, 2001, Dr. Andrew Bagby was murdered in a parking lot in western Pennsylvania; the prime suspect, his ex-girlfriend Dr. Shirley Turner, promptly fled the United States for St. John's, Canada, where she announced that she was pregnant with Andrew's child. She named the little boy Zachary.
Filmmaker Kurt Kuenne, Andrew's oldest friend, began making a film for little Zachary as a way for him to get to know the father he'd never meet. But when Shirley Turner was released on bail in Canada and was given custody of Zachary while awaiting extradition to the U.S., the film's focus shifted to Zachary's grandparents, David & Kathleen Bagby, and their desperate efforts to win custody of the boy from the woman they knew had murdered their son.
What happened next, no one ever could have foreseen…
Kurt is an award-winning filmmaker and composer of both fiction and documentary films. He grew up in Silicon Valley, where at age 7, he met the late Dr. Andrew Bagby, the subject of Dear Zachary. He began making films as soon as he was old enough to pick up a camera; these early films, all of which featured Andrew, became a treasure trove for this documentary.
Kurt continued to hone his craft in college, graduating magna cum laude from the University of Southern California's School of Cinema-Television in 1995, where he won the Harold Lloyd Scholarship in Film Editing, and studied Scoring for Motion Pictures & Television at the USC School of Music under the tutelage of classic film composers Buddy Baker and David Raksin. In 1999, he completed his first feature film, the teen drama Scrapbook starring Eric Balfour, which garnered strong reviews, awards and landed him on Filmmaker magazine's annual list of the top 25 new faces of independent cinema. He followed it with Drive-In Movie Memories (2001), a documentary chronicling the outdoor movie-going experience, which opened the 2001 Telluride Film Festival and went onto play more than 45 festivals before becoming a popular hit with PBS audiences in the United States.
In 2002, he won a Nicholl Fellowship in Screenwriting from the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts & Sciences for his screenplay Mason Mule, while his screenplay Explode made the quarterfinals in the same year. He has since directed an ongoing series of black & white short film comedies, beginning with the enormously popular Rent-A-Person (2004), which played more than 30 film festivals in North America while picking up multiple audience and jury awards. The run was continued with the next film in the series, Validation (2006) starring TJ Thyne (Bones), which at this writing has played 39 festivals worldwide, won 19 awards and garnered more in prize money than the film's production budget.
He recently completed two more installments in the series, Slow – debuting on Delta Airlines flights in December 2007 - and The Phone Book, which are currently playing festivals.
As themselves Dr. Heather Arnold
Dr. Andrew Bagby
Kathleen “Kate” and David Bagby
Pat and Linda Bagby
Jacqueline "Jackie" Brazil
Dr. John Doucette
Dr. Shirley Turner
Zachary Andrew Turner
Judge Gail Welsh
Road to reform: Petitions and links for activists working on Judicial Reform.
Additional Footage of Andrew and Zachary including the famous "Best Man Speech".
Oscilloscope Trailer Gallery.
Catalog Number: OSC-003