“I’m With Phil” Documentary Tells Unique Story Of Tornado Recovery Efforts In Phil Campbell

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When a deadly tornado outbreak hit Phil Campbell, Alabama more than 20 people died from the small town.  It’s been a long recovery and still homes and buildings remain damaged.

But a documentary captures some relief efforts in Phil Campbell by a certain group of men, all named “Phil Campbell”.

The film will debut at the George Lindsey film festival.

But first a sneak peak at the film as the documentary’s director speaks to WHNT News 19 about the feature length movie.

More than 30 Phil Campbell’s from across the world descended on the small town of Phil Campbell.

What was supposed to be a celebration, turned into disaster relief efforts after an E-F 5 tornado ripped through buildings and homes, wiping the town away, on April 27th, 2011.

“Immediately after the tornado, we had a lot of Phil’s jump on board and commit, so I`m really proud of that,” said the documentary director, Andrew Reed.

The day the “Phil Campbell’s” came to Phil Campbell was all caught on camera.  Reed grew up in the small town, and transformed the video into a feature length documentary.

“I think anybody will be moved by the story, the tornado is actually a surprise in the documentary because we started filming this before the tornado,” said Reed.  “So that`s how it`s presented in the film.  It`s a twist.  You think you`re going to be seeing this funny, kinda light hearted film then all of a sudden, tragedy strikes.”

Reed and a small crew captured the Phil Campbell’s cleaning up a pool and community center, making the name sake town a personal recovery project.

“They also brought some hope to the people here and I was very moved by what they did and their selfless act spending their time to come down here and bring a little happiness to people`s lives in Phil Campbell,” said Reed.

Now Reed wants to spread the story of the Phil Cambell’s and Phil Campbell, Alabama, across the country.  But first Reed’s documentary will be screened on Friday, March 2nd, at the Zodiac Theater in downtown Florence.

Admission is free, but Reed says there are only 100 available seats.

Reed will learn in March if his film won any awards.