Eddie Rosenstein, documentary film maker
Life can be strange and wonderful all at the same time. We've all had these things happen; a great event is oddly intertwined with another.
My friend EddieRosenstein
is a documentary film maker and screenwriter and
this Sunday night at 10 PM on the History Channel, his new series 'Sandhogs' will premier. Also this Sunday evening is the last performance of the musical 'Rent' on Broadway.
Here's the story.
Eddie was best friends and for years writing partner with the creator of the musical, Jonathan Larson. He watched him toil and craft this piece, a musical based on Puccini's La Bohème and re-imagined taking place in modern New York. Larson's narrator and main character in the piece is a documentary film maker 'Mark', based on Eddie, a guy who won't put the camera down. As most already know, Larson died of an aortic aneurism when it was in previews. It won rave reviews, changed Broadway and won the Tony and Pulitzer Prize. When Jonathan passed, Eddie was there to find his friend.
Eddie is an amazing talent. He is wildly curious and has a great eye for where the story is. He is full of ideas and enthusiasm and several years ago Eddie became interested in the fascinating world of the sandhogs. These men are to ones who build tunnels under NY City. For 150 years this close knit but fairly unknown group does dangerous work underground. We travel through their tunnels and survive drinking water through them as well.
It is not easy to get underground as a civilian, and there have only been a select few who have had the chance. To be able to be down there for more that one day required some real sacrifice for Eddie. He found out that it would be much more acceptable to the men if he BECAME a sandhog. So, Eddie began waking up in the predawn hours and went to work under Manhattan as a real Sandhog. He joined the union and earned the trust to begin filming. Eddie likes to point out that he is the first Jewish Sandhog.
History Channel picked up the work he was doing and offered him a series. It chronicles the lives and dangerous work of these men.
This Sunday night Eddie will not be a launch party for the Sandhogs series or at a gathering with the men who are in the piece, he will be at the closing of Rent.
Congratulations Eddie and I hope all of you check it out or Tivo it.
Morgan Curran; SANDHOG