Dan Wolff contributed to this article.
Filmmaker Charlie Minn is set to premiere his documentary 49 Pulses, which recounts the June 12, 2016, shooting at a gay nightclub in Orlando, this Friday, January 26 at the Premiere Cinema 14 theater in Orlando Fashion Square Mall.
“My films represent innocent people who have been murdered. I’m here to give them a voice. If I’m the one who has to talk for them, then so be it,” said Minn.
Minn’s film will screen six times a day, at 11:00 A.M., 1:20 P.M., 3:40 P.M., 6:05 P.M., 8:20 P.M., and 10:35 P.M., for one week. However, the film may resonate with Orlando audiences and screen longer, according to Minn.
In his film, Minn does not mention the name of the Pulse shooter, Omar Mateen, because he believes the Mateen has been “glorified” by the media.
“I’ve been sick and tired of the media always glorifying the killer, putting the focus on the killer when the victims are the ones that should be discussed,” said Minn. “I think if you asked the average person who follows the news if they could name the shooter, they probably could. If you ask them to name one person out of the 49 that were murdered in Orlando, they’d probably go 0 for 49.”
Christine Leinonen is one of the 20-25 people Minn interviewed for the movie. Leinonen’s son Drew, who died in the shooting, was notably featured with his boyfriend, fellow UCF student Juan Ramon Guerroro, in a mural outside the UCF Student Union recognizing the victims.
One criticism some have for the film is the release is too close to the shooting itself. However, Minn maintains that the film needs to be released out of respect for the victims.
“For the people who want the story not told, who feel like the wound is reopened, I asked them politely, ‘You didn’t get shot. The victims want their stories told, and we should respect that.'”
Minn has directed 25 documentaries since 2010, mostly dealing with tragedies. Many of his films are available for streaming on Amazon Prime. His next film, A Nightmare in Las Vegas, recounts the October 1, 2017, shooting in Las Vegas, and will premiere in March.
Knight News will be here with further coverage of 49 Pulses leading up to the January 26 premiere. Visit the official website at 49pulses.com for more information on the film.