Film About Detroit Firefighters Premieres at Tribeca

Fire Commissioner Donald Austin and several members of the department were in attendance.


On Sunday, the efforts of two filmmakers aiming to share the story of Detroit's firefighters finally paid off.

The film "Burn: One Year on the Front Lines of the Battle to Save Detroit" premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival in New York City.

View Photos from the Premiere

The film screened at AMC Loews Village 7 and is scheduled to show at the Clearview Cinemas Chelsea 8 on Tuesday and the School of Visual Arts on Thursday as part of the festival.

Fire Commissioner Donald Austin and several members of the department were in attendance for the premiere.

Filmmakers Tom Putnam and Brenna Sanchez spent more than two years on the documentary and got a big boost last summer when actor/comedian Dennis Leary became an executive producer of the film.

During an interview with Firehouse.com Staff Writer Ed Ballam in October 2011, both Putnam and Sanchez shared their goals for making the film.

"For me, as a Detroiter and an American, I see Detroit at a crossroads," Sanchez said. "It's an iconic city. People know it as Motown. They know about Kid Rock. They know about Eminem. Everybody has an idea of what Detroit is ... we need to focus on what it can be."

Putnam told Ballam that he wanted to highlight the heroics of Detroit's firefighters, along with their struggles.

"The firefighters put it all on the line because they believe in the city," he said. "No one else is taking the saving of Detroit as seriously as the firefighters."

A portion of the proceeds from the film will go to the Leary Firefighters Foundation to buy gear for the Detroit Fire Department.