Alum’s film in Oscar contention
“I can hardly believe it,” says KRIS NEWBY. But it’s true: Her documentary on Lyme disease has made it to the short list of 15 entries for the Academy Awards. Newby, who writes the newsletter for the Program in Human Biology, will find out on Feb. 2 whether Under Our Skin makes the next cut to become one of the five finalists with a shot at the Oscar statue for best documentary.
Newby, the senior director of the film, has screenwriting experience, but her Stanford master’s degree is in engineering (’82.) The film’s editor, EVA ILONA BRZESKI, earned a master’s in documentary filmmaking on the Farm in 1992.
Newby and her husband, Paul, come to the subject from personal experience; both have suffered from the misunderstood ailment, spread through tick bites. “It’s been mostly good for this last year, but I still have lingering symptoms,” she said.
The making of the film (“A gripping tale of microbes, medicine and money”) is an effort to raise awareness that chronic Lyme disease is real. “Definitely, without antibiotics, both Paul and I would be dead,” she said.