RANCHO SANTA MARGARITA, Calif., Sept. 19, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- SPEAK, a documentary film released on DVD this week, follows six Toastmasters in their quest to win the coveted title of "World Champion of Public Speaking." The feature-length film was released in select theaters last month. Produced by Los Angeles-based Tumbleweed Entertainment, SPEAK chronicles the experience of competing in the world's largest public speaking contest.
In 2008, directors Brian Weidling and Paul Galichia approached Toastmasters International with the idea of following several speech contestants. The directors chose the subject matter because "public speaking is so important to success, to power, to leadership. … It's a topic that permeates daily life," Galichia says.
Toastmasters International, the world's leading organization that teaches skills in public speaking and leadership, gave the film its focus. "While we found the fear of public speaking an interesting topic to explore, visiting a Toastmasters club in Los Angeles helped shape our idea for the film," Weidling says. "We immediately responded to the stories of personal transformation and the palpable energy in the room — a positive energy that made people feel safe and validated."
Daniel Rex, Executive Director of Toastmasters International, supports the film's message. "Everyone has a story to tell, but not everyone has the confidence to tell it," he says. "This movie chronicles what it takes to be the world champion."
The filmmakers, who previously made the highly regarded soccer-themed documentary The Goal, were intrigued by the physical symptoms and emotional paralysis that public speaking can cause, and spent two years documenting speakers across North America. Much of SPEAK revolves around the Toastmasters International World Championship of Public Speaking, an annual contest that starts with more than 30,000 participants from 116 countries and ends with a much-anticipated final round each August, featuring nine talented speakers.
"Every person has a voice, and every person's life story matters," says Galichia. "If you can tell that story and share it with an audience, you can change someone's life forever."
Available on DVD for $24.99, SPEAK includes bonus materials and the full speeches of two championship finalists. For more information about the film, visit speakthemovie.com. Follow Speak on Twitter @speakthemovie. For more information about Toastmasters International and tips on how to become a better speaker, watch these testimonials on video, and Time-tested Communication Tips.
About Toastmasters International
Toastmasters International is a nonprofit educational organization that teaches public speaking and leadership skills through a worldwide network of clubs. Founded in October 1924, the organization currently has more than 280,000 members in 13,500 clubs in 116 countries. Each week, Toastmasters helps more than a quarter million people of every ethnicity, education level and profession build their competence in communication so they can gain the confidence to lead others. For information about local Toastmasters clubs, please visit www.toastmasters.org. Follow Toastmasters International on Twitter @Toastmasters.
About Tumbleweed Entertainment
Founded in 2006 and headquartered in Brentwood, CA, Tumbleweed Entertainment develop, produce and distribute documentary features, reality television and digital media entertainment. In addition to SPEAK, the studio has several entertainment properties in development and production. MTV, Best Buy, Burger King, Clorox, Tylenol and Visa are among the company's work-for-hire clients. For more information, visit www.tumbleweedentertainment.com.
SOURCE Toastmasters International