Adventures in Miscarriage

(Documentary feature in development)

Calling on the powers of dark comedy, absurdist performance, and queer camp, an angry heartbroken filmmaker pulls back the curtain on reproductive injustice in post-Roe America by exploring the world’s most common pregnancy complication: miscarriage. 

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Join the adventure! Help us make this film!  

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ADVENTURES IN MISCARRIAGE is a fiscally sponsored project of the Center for Independent Documentary (CID), a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. Center for Independent Documentary is dedicated to collaborating with independent filmmakers, offering assistance and support in bringing their films to completion. All donations made to CID on behalf of ADVENTURES IN MISCARRIAGE are tax-deductible. https://www.documentaries.org/adventures-in-miscarriage

 

The Filmmakers

ADVENTURES IN MISCARRIAGE is a timely feature-length documentary by Emmy-nominated filmmaker Cheryl Furjanic that educates, enrages, entertains, and invites people on a unique and urgent adventure of discovery and revelation. Using her own miscarriage as a jumping-off point, Filmmaker Cheryl Furjanic explores pregnancy loss from many angles: its surprising history, mental health impacts, the culture of shame and silence surrounding it, emerging training offered to medical practitioners to promote better miscarriage care, dangerous effects that Roe v. Wade’s repeal has had, and more. Employing innovative nonfiction elements like absurdist humor, ridiculous reenactments, over-exaggeration, and deadpan voiceover, ADVENTURES IN MISCARRIAGE is a meditation on miscarriage mourning, a creative exploration of how people who miscarry are treated, and a call to action to improve care for women and anyone capable of getting pregnant.

 

Director's Statement
One in four pregnancies ends in loss. But despite this startling rate, most people who experience miscarriage never talk much about it…and neither do our family, friends, or doctors. Someone you know has had a miscarriage and they weren’t prepared for it. Most documentaries released about miscarriage are gentle, delicate, and careful. This also feels like the “appropriate” way that American society wants us to grieve pregnancy loss. My miscarriage experience was certainly traumatic and heartbreaking, but my grief – and my film – are also raucous and funny, clumsy and surprising, angry and queer. Camp is the LGBTQ sensibility that examines serious and often painful experiences through humor and aesthetic extravagance. Camp has long been a vital form of queer survival and resistance – and is a central storytelling tool in this film. Our genre-bending documentary uses elements like over-the-top fantasy sequences, irreverent reenactments, historical send-ups, intimate interviews, larger-than-life science, riveting production design, and deadpan voiceover to reveal new ways of looking at a medical event that has occurred for as long as humans have existed.

 

Audience
ADVENTURES appeals to anyone interested in urgent conversations around reproductive rights and resonates with audiences grappling with many kinds of grief while navigating the landscapes of their own losses. We use humor and absurdity to entice audiences to learn more about this “uncomfortable” topic, no matter their personal experience. While this film is certainly for “The Miscarriage Club” members, it also resonates with the massive ecosystem of people affected by pregnancy loss – folks trying to conceive, their partners, parents, siblings, friends, employers, medical professionals, and many others. We’re planning for a wide release paired with a strategic impact & outreach campaign. Part of this project’s work is to challenge and improve how doctors, hospitals, OB/GYNS, insurance companies, policymakers, employers, and more – treat people who experience miscarriage. 

 

 

Film Team

Cheryl Furjanic (Director/Producer) is an Emmy-nominated filmmaker whose documentary and fiction films have screened at 150+ festivals worldwide and on television. Her most recent work is the New York Times Op-Docs film STONEWALL: THE MAKING OF A MONUMENT (2019). Her feature documentary BACK ON BOARD: GREG LOUGANIS was broadcast on HBO and nominated for an Emmy Award and Producers Guild of America award in 2016. Her feature documentary SYNC OR SWIM (2008) screened at the Slamdance Film Festival and MoMA’s Documentary Fortnight. Early short films include the LGBTQ film festival hit BAR TALK (2002) a comedy fiction film “in Lesbian with English subtitles.” Though she has worked in many different filmmaking genres, there is a through-line in all of her work of heart, humor, and hope in the face of uncertainty.  Cheryl is a member of “The Miscarriage Club,” a closet juggler, a karaoke lover, and an award-winning Halloween costume maker.

Rachel Lears (Executive Producer) is a documentary director, producer, and cinematographer based in Brooklyn, NY. Rachel’s most recent feature documentaries are, KNOCK DOWN THE HOUSE (Netflix) and TO THE END (Roadside Attractions / Hulu). Rachel is a three-time member of “The Miscarriage Club.” She lives in Brooklyn with her husband and her kiddo.

Stephanie Schiavenato (Producer) is a Latina filmmaker, doula, and anthropologist. She produced and directed LANDFALL (2018), a short documentary about the lingering effects of trauma from migration. She is currently producing and directing MOTHER CAKE, a documentary exploring the relationship between women and their placentas. Stephanie is one of the most experienced doulas in NYC (and is helping to doula this movie out of Cheryl). Her PhD dissertation research focused on how families cope with pregnancy loss. She regularly gives presentations about fetal loss and has written extensively about the subject. Twelve years ago, Stephanie was pregnant and had a premature delivery of twin girls who died shortly after being born.

Nina Krstic (Consulting Producer) is a director and producer. Her credits include THE LAST DANCE, 99%: THE OCCUPY WALL STREET COLLABORATIVE FILM, and O.J. MADE IN AMERICA, which received an Academy Award for best documentary feature. Nina is a member of “The Miscarriage Club.” She lives in New York with her partner and her daughter.

J (JT) Tinneny (Co-Producer) is a queer filmmaker based in Brooklyn, on the unceded indigenous lands of the Lenape. JT brings with them years of experience working at Human Rights Watch Film Festival, Jigsaw Productions, and The Gotham. Recent production credits include LOWNDES COUNTY AND THE ROAD TO BLACK POWER and QUEER FUTURES.

 

Who's in the club?

Having a miscarriage is like being in a “club”  you wish you weren’t a member of.

Let’s hear from some of our members!

Club Quotes 1
Club Quotes 2

Who's in the club?

  • Lily Allen, Singer
  • Kirstie Alley, Actress
  • Tori Amos, Singer
  • Eva Amurri, Actress
  • Pamela Anderson, Actress
  • Josephine Baker, Dancer/Singer/Actress
  • Hilaria Baldwin, Public Figure
  • Elizabeth Banks, Actress
  • Beyoncé, Global Superstar
  • Victoria Beckham, Singer/Designer
  • Laura Benanti, Actress/Singer
  • Valerie Bertinelli, Actress
  • Ankita Bhargava, Actress
  • Brandi Boyd, TV Personality
  • Christie Brinkley, Model
  • Julia Bueno, Author/Psychotherapist
  • Barbara Bush, former First Lady of the United States
  • Elisabetta Canalis, Actress
  • Mariah Carey, Singer
  • Nell Carter, Actress
  • Priscilla Chan, Philanthropist / Former Pediatrician
  • Joan Chen, Actress/Director
  • Cher, CHER!!!!
  • Courtney Cox, Actress
  • Joan Crawford, Actress
  • Celine Dion, Singer
  • Dylan Dryer, Meteorologist
  • Tammy Duckworth, Senator (Democrat-Illinois)
  • Liz Feldman, TV Writer/Creator
  • Bethany Frankel, Entrepreneur/TV Personality
  • Brenda Fricker, Actress
  • Deborra-Lee Furness, Actress/Producer
  • Dawn-Lyen Gardner, Actress
  • Sara Gaynes Levy, Writer
  • Golnesa Gharachedaghim TV Personality
  • Kathy Lee Gifford, TV Host
  • Jacinda Gugliemino, TV Personality (Australia)
  • Morgan Goodwin, Athlete
  • Halsey, Singer
  • Linda Hamilton, Actress
  • Teri Hatcher, Actress
  • Audrey Hepburn, Actress
  • Claire Holt, Actress
  • Whitney Houston, Singer
  • Kelly Hutchinson, TV Writer
  • Jessie J, Singer
  • Shawn Johnson, Olympic Athlete
  • Nancy Kerrigan, Olympic Athlete
  • Frida Kahlo, Artist
  • Laura Kenny, Olympic Athlete
  • Nicole Kidman, Actress
  • Jamie King, Actress
  • Gladys Knight, Singer
  • Jana Kramer, Singer/Actress
  • Lucy Lawless, Actress
  • Jennifer Lawrence, Actress
  • Jeanette “The Black Widow” Lee, Professional Pool Player
  • Janet Leigh, Actress
  • Vivien Leigh, Actress
  • Ariel Levy, Writer
  • Lisa Ling. Journalist
  • Lindsay Lohan, Actress
  • Sophia Loren, Actress
  • Courtney Love, Singer
  • Loni Love, Comedian/Actress
  • Katie Lowes, actress
  • Evelyn Lozada, TV Personality
  • Susan Lucci, Actress
  • Melanie Lynskey, Actress
  • Kate Mara, Actress
  • Meghan Markle, Duchess & former Actress
  • Amy Mass, TV Writer/Producer
  • Teddi Mellencamp, TV Personality
  • Erica Mena, TV Personality
  • Meghan McCain, TV Personality
  • Liza Minelli, Liza with a Z
  • Beverly Mitchell, Actress/Singer
  • Shay Mitchell, Actress
  • Lil’ Mo, Singer
  • Marilyn Monroe, Actress
  • Demi Moore, Actress
  • Mary Tyler Moore, Actress
  • Natalie Morales, Journalist
  • Renee Morrison, Actress
  • Alanis Morrissette, Singer
  • Sinead O’Connor, Singer
  • Michelle Obama, former First Lady of the United States
  • Isabelle Oderberg, Author
  • Jackie Kennedy Onassis, former First Lady of the United States
  • Yoko Ono, Artist
  • Gwyneth Paltrow, Actress
  • Amanda Palmer, Singer
  • Christina Perri, Singer
  • Pink, Singer
  • Angelina Pivarnick, TV Personality
  • Sylvia Plath, Poet/Writer
  • Suzanne Pleshette, Actress
  • Tiffany “New York” Pollard, TV Personality
  • Whitney Port, TV Personality
  • Jane Pratt, Magazine Editor / Radio Host
  • Lisa Marie Presley, Singer
  • Giuliana Rancic, TV Personality
  • Melissa Rauch, Actresss
  • Joan Rivers, Comedian
  • Missy Robertson, TV Personality
  • Lela Rochon, Actress
  • Gabrielle Ruiz, Actress
  • Melissa Rycroft, TV Personality
  • Hillary Scott, Singer
  • Laura Seftel, Author
  • Jackie Seiden, Actress
  • Katey Sagal, Actress
  • Jean Seberg, Actress
  • Jane Seymour, Actress
  • Brooke Shields, Actress
  • Lynn Shelton, Filmmaker
  • Hope Solo, Olympic Athlete
  • Britney Spears, Pop Star
  • Sharon Stone, Actress
  • Amanda Tapping, Actress
  • Elizabeth Taylor, Actress
  • Chrissy Teigen, Cookbook Author / TV Personality
  • Emma Thompson, Actress
  • Jade Roper Tolbert, TV Personality
  • Carrie Underwood, Singer
  • Gabrielle Union, Actress
  • Kimberly Van Der Beek, Actress/Producer
  • Alicia Vikander, Actress
  • Mireya Villerreal, Journalist
  • Sara Walsh, Sports Journalist
  • Barbara Walters, Journalist / TV Personality
  • Amy Webb, Writer / Futurist
  • Vanna White, TV Personality
  • Porsha Williams,  TV Personality
  • Wendy Williams, TV Personality / Radio Host
  • Oprah Winfrey, Mega Mogul
  • Ali Wong, Comedian
  • Jane Wyman, Actress
  • Jessica Zucker, Author/Psychologist

Membership Card

 

Contact

For Pitch Deck, Fundraising Trailer, Donor Opportunities, etc.

Email cheryl@adventuresinmiscarriage.com

 

 

THIS FILM IS BEING MADE WITH SUPPORT FROM:

 

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Join Us

Our film uses humor and candor as a way to invite audiences to get comfortable talking about miscarriage. This film will appeal to the massive ecosystem of people whose lives have been affected by pregnancy loss – folks who are trying to conceive, their partners, parents, siblings, friends, employers, medical professionals, and many others. Our goal is to bring the topic of miscarriage and the treatment of pregnant people into a national public conversation. And to change the way that doctors, hospitals, OB/GYNS, insurance companies, and more – treat people who are miscarrying.

Our goal for the film is a wide release paired with a strategic international impact campaign:

  • Film festival release to build an audience and engage national press.
  • National television broadcast or release on major streaming platform.
  • Strategic outreach, screening tour & training workshops to better prepare medical personnel for supporting people experiencing pregnancy loss.
  • Resources and support to complement the film’s message. Fee medical and support supplies (via our website) for anyone who has recently experienced a pregnancy loss, and a suite of educational and community discussion guides.
  • Conference screening campaign focused on presentations at medical, birth, and grief/loss conferences.
  • Policymaker engagement campaign to improve legislation around pregnancy loss.

 

The Message

A full-term pregnancy is nine months (or about 40 weeks). The medical definition of a miscarriage is when a pregnancy ends inside a pregnant person’s body before 20 weeks. Upon experiencing a miscarriage, some people feel they have lost a fetus, others feel they lost an embryo, and others feel they have lost a baby. But no matter what someone calls their loss, the reality is one day they’re pregnant, and then suddenly they’re not. And whatever is inside their body has to come out. This is a miscarriage.

For as long as humans have been on this planet, people have been getting pregnant and experiencing pregnancy loss. Today, an estimated 25% of pregnancies end in miscarriage. That’s 35 million people per year who miscarry worldwide and 1.5 million people who miscarry in the United States alone. And those are just the statistics about miscarriages that are reported. Many people miscarry and never tell anyone. However, despite the staggering frequency with which people miscarry, the personal experience of pregnancy loss has been historically silenced and awash in shame.

A political war is being waged on women’s bodies in the United States and the legal efforts to criminalize pregnant people are growing nationwide. With the recent reversal of Roe v. Wade, pregnant bodies are under attack and miscarriage is on the frontlines. Medical procedures used for abortions are often the same procedures used for miscarriage care. Denying, or criminalizing, medical access for pregnant people creates a dangerous future for anyone capable of gestating a fetus in their uterus. Miscarriage is a reproductive justice issue.

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