Synopsis & Goals
“Saving the Florida Wildlife Corridor” is a half-hour wildlife and conservation film directed by Danny Schmidt. Vanessa Serrao, the Vice President, Impact Story Lab at National Geographic supported the project. Path of the Panther Managing Director Tori Linder was the impact producer and instrumental in the conception and making of the film. The film was also made in partnership with Grizzly Peak Films and the Nature Conservancy. Jackson Wild Film Festival 2021 recognized “Saving the Florida Wildlife Corridor” in the Special Jury Impact Campaign category. The film was created with the very specific goal of convincing state legislators in Florida to vote in ways that protect the Florida Wildlife Corridor. The Florida Wildlife Corridor is made up of 18 million acres of public and private land across the state. It serves as the habitat for Florida’s wildlife, including the endangered Florida Panther. Although 10 million acres of that corridor is already protected land and cannot be taken over by developers, the remaining 8 million acres do not have a conservation status and are still vulnerable to future development projects. Protecting this portion of the existing corridor was a top priority amongst the legislative changes that the film sought out to bring about. This is because Florida has many new residents moving there every year, which leads to high demand for new developments. Beyond protecting the existing corridor, this project also seeks to expand the size of the corridor beyond the 18 million acres to connect the separate pieces of the corridor and increase the overall coverage area of protected land for the wildlife to roam in. This is important because the endangered Florida Panthers need 200 acres each for survival. For the population of the Florida Panthers to continue to grow after its near extinction a few decades back, the existing area of the corridor needs to be expanded.