‘Key West: Come As You Are’ will be a 90-minute film

Michael Kirk interviews Lynn Kaufelt for his Key West history film. CONTRIBUTED

Accomplished producer Michael J. Kirk is making a 90-minute film that explores the rich and valuable history of Key West. Starting with the Native American inhabitants, the film will move through the many years of trials and tribulations as well as the successes that built this incredible and important town.

The historic Custom House museum provides the ideal backdrop as curator Cori Convertito shares her vast knowledge of Key West history. MICHAEL KIRK/Contributed

Founded in 1822, Key West (Cayo Hueso) has played many vital roles in American history in addition to world history.  The story of this community is indelible as are the great people, who against all odds built the Island paradise we enjoy today. 

Filmmaker Michael Kirk interviews Cori Convertito, curator of the Key West Art & Historical Society, for his Key West history film. BRITT MYERS/Keys Weekly

The narrative of the film will be told using impactful and colorful interviews by historians and people who have spent many years on the island and in some cases multiple generations.  These stories will be woven together through each historical event that shaped Key West.
When complete, the film will have tremendous use and distribution locally, statewide, and nationally. “Key West: Come as You Are” will be the first and only comprehensive film produced about the true history of the island. It will also help the viewer understand how various cultures came together to work for the common good of the community and appreciate how those values of unity and respect are foundational to humanity today-a real microcosm of how our society can be One Human Family-Together forever. 

The film is being produced primarily for the 200th anniversary of Key West as well as national television distribution to a mass broadcast audience.  But additionally, it will be used for further intimate discussion and curriculum application by local public schools, colleges, museums and cultural institutions. 

Michael Kirk is producer and director of ‘Key West: Come As You Are,’ a 90-minute film about Key West’s true history. CONTRIBUTED

The team includes: Kirk, director/producer; Marial Martyn, co-producer; and consultants George Fernandez, Cori Convertito, Paul Menta, Tom Greenwood, Theresa Axford and Corey Malcom. 

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