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New Movie Looks At Life Of Famed Santa Barbara Documentary Maker

Photo from "Diving Deep: The Life and Times of Mike deGruy"
Documentary producer Mike DeGruy filming some dolphins

He was a documentary filmmaker with an incredible love of our oceans. Santa Barbara filmmaker Mike deGruy was an Emmy Award-winning cinematographer, and a gifted storyteller who eventually moved from behind to in front of the camera.

He tragically died in a 2012 helicopter crash in Australia, while working on a project. But, a new documentary premiering at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival is intended to help tell one of DeGruy’s biggest unfinished stories.

“Diving Deep: The Life and Times of Mike deGruy” was produced by the filmmaker’s widow and longtime production partner, Mimi DeGruy.

She says when she started looking at some of the unfinished projects they started, she realized that one, which was especially important to him, showed that people aren't even aware of the extent of the ocean resources we are also destroying.

DeGruy has been working on the project for more than four years. It includes footage from unfinished projects, as well as interviews with a number of collaborators like James Cameron and famed Marine Biologist Sylvia Earle.

DeGruy admits it was a tough project, because it brought up so many emotions along the way.

The filmmaker says she hopes it resonates with audiences, because it’s about something we all have a stake in: the future of our oceans.

After its debut at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival, DeGruy plans to take it on the film festival circuit, then find a distributor to get it in front of audiences around the world.