ROBIN BAKER LEACOCK’S ROMANTIC COMEDY DOCUMENTARY
ON PBS OFFERS A JOYFUL LOOK AT AGING
Premiere Date: Saturday, July 25 at 4:30 p.m. ET
Filmmaker Robin Baker Leacock’s Stella & Co is a celebration of the extraordinary life of her almost 104-year old mother, Estelle Craig, known as Stella, and eight vibrant seniors – ages 75 to 105 – living their best lives. With moving personal stories and candid interviews tackling a range of thought-provoking issues, the film delivers an inspiring and optimistic look at what it means to age in these uncertain times, through humour, music and storytelling. Produced and directed by Baker Leacock, Stella & Co will be shown nationally on PBS this spring/summer. The 50-minute film can be viewed in Toronto on PBS WNED-TV, Saturday, July 25 at 4:30 p.m. ET.
Truly ahead of her time, Stella was a pioneer in several fields in her hometown Toronto. She was a journalist, did hundreds of interviews for CBC Radio, launched a 16 mm film festival called Cinema 16; launched a children’s magazine, Small Types, and founded World Adventure Tours, inviting top international filmmakers and adventurers to Toronto over a 45-year span. Special presentations produced by Stella included: Sir Edmund Hillary right after he climbed Mt Everest; the Duke of Bedford, with a PR escapade claiming he was buying Casa Loma; American writer, broadcaster and traveller Lowell Thomas, and Clement Richard Attlee, the Prime Minister of England. Stella was the president of the Variety Club and The Press Club.
Upon spending time with Stella and her friends at a dynamic seniors residence in Florida, Baker Leacock wanted to show what can be gleaned from some of the residents more joyful life experiences, and for people to realize they are capable of great things – at any age. After all, Stella wrote seven books after the age of 95 and five books after the age of 100 years young. Stella passed away on February 11, 2019, just before her 104th birthday.
Says Baker Leacock, “My hope is that this film will encourage people to remember the great treasure we have in our older generation. We are living in extraordinary times, where our aging population is vulnerable as never before. The goal is to offer viewers a much-needed forward-thinking shift in perspective. Aging is a subject that affects all of us. There is so much to do in terms of caring for our older population.”