Emergent City (2024)


Feature Documentary, 2024, 4K Video
Director: Kelly Anderson and Jay Arthur Sterrenberg

Produced by Kelly Anderson and Brenda Avila-Hanna // Executive Producers Steve Maing and Carrie Lozano

Cinematography: Sean Hanley, Jay Arthur Sterrenberg, Alex Mallis, Viola Wan

Color: Natacha Ikoli

Over a decade, within the borders of a single Brooklyn community district, a microcosm of American democracy emerges. Residents of Sunset Park face a tangled web of rising rents, a legacy of environmental racism and the loss of the industrial jobs that once sustained their community. When a global developer purchases Industry City - a massive industrial complex on the waterfront - and begins to transform it into an “innovation district,” a battle erupts over the future of the neighborhood and of New York City itself.

Emergent City is an observational civic epic. It sheds light on power and process, illuminating systems and giving viewers a front row seat to the public and private spaces where the city is shaped. With extraordinary access, it tracks an ensemble of participants including the local council member, Industry City’s developers and community members with divergent stakes. The film explores the profound intersections of gentrification, climate crisis and real estate development, and asks how change might emerge from dialogue and collective action in a world where too many outcomes are constrained by money, politics and business as usual. World Premiere: Tribeca Festival - Spotlight Documentary