Features

That Winged Cherub

Illustration by Terry Sunderland

Peter Wintonick was that winged cherub, up in the corner of an antique map, blowing the wind, moving ships and interest and flotsam, and precious things that might wash up on shore, whipping up tsunamis of creativity and concern, generosity and spirit, around the globe.

Compulsively creative, unconventional connections constantly forged in the magma of his mind: words, images, sounds, ideas, people, causes—in every possible combination—in print, on line, on screen, in person. Most of his voluminous correspondence, personal and business, was written in lowercase and formatted like poetry. Indeed, much of it was. After writing to tell Peter about a surprisingly good turnout recently at the Bloor Hot Docs Cinema in Toronto for our 22-year-old film Manufacturing Consent: Noam Chomsky and the Media, I received a typical reply:

nice to hear the old warhorse mancon still appeals

cant begin to tell you how many hundreds (“thousands”) have come
up to me
over the years and all over the world to say our film changed their
lives
or got them into making films themselves

not much diff between king george bush the first and his iraq attack
his son in afghani one
and barak obooma with his drone dramas, renditions, failures on
guantarmo, yemen, wherever whatever

triumphalism reigns, hubris and denial

saw obama climbing around petra in lebanon the other day
for lovely photop’s while crete, palestine, detroit
disintegrate economically and geopoliticallly
and the tally ban return to afghan

peter of thessaloniki

Peter Wintonick
Eyesteelfilm: International Producer
Necessary Illusions: Exec. Producer / Director of Development
Festival Programmer / Critic / Mentor / Conference Organizer

Who else writes like that? Like the films he made and supported, Peter was a one-off. He channelled his anger and frustration with the world’s injustices into media designed to motivate. He was the best friend any filmmaker could hope to have.

Mark Achbar is now an Executive Producer on eleven feature documentaries including Velcrow Ripper’s Fierce Light and Sam Bozzo’s Blue Gold. Both films recently premiered and won top audience awards in their respective categories at the Vancouver International Film Festival.

View all articles by Mark Achbar »