In the summer of 2007, Traverse City writer Lori Hall Steele found a red, bull’s-eye shaped bite on her leg. By fall, she’d lost use of her foot. Over the course of the next year, she became paralyzed, but doctors couldn’t explain why. Lori’s brother, director Timothy Grey, along with producer Breanne Russell, canvassed the country with a camera on a quest for answers. Lori passed away this November, but Grey and Russell, who believe Lori was lost to Lyme disease, haven’t stopped asking questions. Under the Eightball, chronicles their—and Lori’s—complicated journey through a medical system they believe failed them.
In their search for answers the filmmakers interviewed top experts in the field including micro-biologists, physicists, M.D.s and P.H.D.s. The film includes live footage, historical documents, original animation and archival military footage. Grey and Russell have included never-before released information gathered throughout the 18-month production.The name for the film stems from a 1951 government project at Fort Detrick, Maryland, in which construction crews built a hollow metal sphere four stories high. Inside germ weapons were to be exploded, creating mists of infectious aerosols for testing on animals …. and people. Employees called it the eight ball.
Under The Eightball was produced by Michigan based film company Andalusian Dogs and was written, directed and edited by Timothy Grey and Breanne Russell. Executive producers are Justin Blake and Rasheed Ali of Traverse City and New York City.
The film premiers at the Traverse City State Theatre, Monday, August 31 at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are $8 for the film only, or $20 for the film and the after party—admission to the premiere plus a meet and greet with the filmmakers and experts included in the film.