City's Rebirth Featured in Bank of America Film

By Charis Anderson
The city and its ongoing revitalization efforts will be showcased tonight at 9 [with future replays] on national television through a mini-documentary created by Bank of America to air during a new series on The History Channel.
The two-minute-long mini-documentary — one of 12 created by Bank of America as part of its sponsorship of the series “America The Story of Us” — will talk about the bank’s efforts to help revitalize city neighborhoods through real estate development, mortgage and small business loans.
Mayor Scott W. Lang said he was surprised and flattered that Bank of America had chosen to highlight New Bedford.
“I think it will be great for the city … The timing couldn’t be better,” said Lang, who said he was interviewed for the piece but was not sure if his material would be included.
“There’s an awful lot of things (happening) that having some national exposure certainly will be very, very helpful.”
Other cities or places that will be featured in mini-documentaries include upstate New York, Oklahoma City, Chicago, and Hollywood, according to a bank spokesman.
In creating these mini-documentaries instead of more traditional product-focused commercials, Bank of America’s intent was to highlight its behind-the-scenes role in the country’s economy over the bank’s more than 200-year history, according to a press release.
The documentaries also complement the content of the 12-hour History Channel series, which is an in-depth look at 400 years of American history and the events that have shaped the country, the release stated.
Lang said he expects the short piece will show off the beauty of the city and its many amenities — from beaches and parks to the Bay Sox and the Whaling City Clippers — to people across the country.
“I think it’s literally a promotional piece to invite people to come to New Bedford as well as to help, to invest in New Bedford’s people,” he said.
According to Lang, Bank of America has been a great partner to the city over the past few years through its donations to cultural institutions such as the Zeiterion Theater and its contributions to after-school programs in the city.
“I think they realize New Bedford is a place they can have a major impact for the better,” said Lang. “And I think they want to show off the great results.”
The mini-documentary on New Bedford will continue to garner attention even after it airs tonight, as the bank intends to place it, along with the other 11 mini-documentaries, on its Web site — — which attracts about 24 million unique monthly visitors, according to a spokesman.
April 25, 2010 12:00 AM
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