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    Aron Gaudet, 38
    Film Director & President
    Sunny Side Up Films

    Over the holidays in 2004, Old Town native Aron Gaudet and his fiancee, Gita Pullapilly, were visiting Aron’s mother, Joan Gaudet, in Bangor. One day they accompanied her to Bangor International Airport, where she and friends Jerry Mundy and Bill Knight had for months been greeting U.S. troops being deployed to or returning from Afghanistan and Iraq.

    Deeply moved by the greeters’ dedication and encounters with the troops, and intrigued by their day-to-day lives, the couple and cameraman Dan Ferrigan (a Winslow native) created “The Way We Get By,” an independently filmed documentary. Gaudet was writer and director. Debuting in March 2009 at the South By Southwest Film Festival, and instate the following month at the Collins Center at UMaine, the film won 18 festival awards including the Special Jury Award at South By Southwest; aired on PBS as a primetime special, and was nominated for an Emmy.

    Gaudet studied at UMaine and the New England School of Communications and worked extensively in television news in Boston and New York, including a stint doing Red Sox and Bruins promos at NESN.

    Sunny Side Up Films’ next project, “Blue Potato,” is a coming-of-age story written by Gaudet, who will also direct, set in northern Aroostook County during the potato harvest. Casting is taking place in New York and Los Angeles; in-state auditions will follow. Production begins late this summer, and the film’s nationwide release is scheduled for early next year.

    Gaudet and Pullapilly (also a Forty Under 40 award winner; please see page 16) moved from New York to Bar Harbor in January 2011, in large part to establish a base to make the Maine-inspired films they envision. “There are so many great stories within the state, and Maine is so different from place to place,” Gaudet says.

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