press releases

Story at Eleven

Local Filmmaker to Produce Documentary Film About his Stroke Experience

Sacramento, California (October 5, 2021) – Local filmmaker Jaime Tafoya has returned to the Sacramento film scene after an extended hiatus to produce an very personal documentary about a life- changing stroke he experienced in 2017.

He left the film business initially to fulfill a lifelong dream of becoming a chef, starting from the bottom and working his way up to Executive Chef in Annapolis, Maryland. “I put in the blood, sweat and tears it took to fulfill that dream. I was in heaven and met the most amazing people. I had incredible mentors that made it possible,” Tafoya said.

While driving home from work, Tafoya’s speech started to slur. Shortly after arriving home, the right side of his body went numb. He was quickly rushed to Anne Arrundel Hospital in Annapolis. He spent four months receiving physical rehabilitation at the Autumn Lake Healthcare Center, and then returned to Sacramento with the help from his lifelong friend and American Airlines pilot Chris Schroeder.

“After my medical crisis, I isolated for several years trying to keep friends and associates at bay while I struggled to regain as much use of my body as I could, Tafoya said. “Immediate family and some very close friends played key roles in supporting and encouraging me during that time.”

He decided to make a documentary film, entitled “Story at Eleven,” after the accumulated stress of stroke recovery coupled with the pandemic and quarantine led to intense visions that lasted months. “I emerged with renewed vigor and insight with help from my family, the Native American community, and my dedicated medical team at The Sacramento Native American Health Center. That was the turning point and game changer. I wanted to make a documentary film. My former business partner, Producer Kevin Beck, encouraged me to just start filming. “Do it; don’t wait,” he said.

"Sacramento Film + Media is excited to see another filmmaker return home to produce his next film. It is projects like Jaime's that uplift our community, create jobs for local crew, and help tell the stories that deserve to be told. Sacramento is lucky to have you back!" Said Jennifer West, Film Commissioner for the City of Sacramento. “I’m keeping the overall creative arc of the project a secret,” said Tafoya. The filmmaker will instead carve out small pieces to select people to not reveal the end product to anyone besides his post-production editing team.

“I hope this documentary will inspire people. If I can reach one person in a positive way, my mission will be accomplished,” Tafoya concluded.

About the film business

Jaime loves the film business but cautions, “It’s a great way to work 16-hour days, endure extreme deadlines and not make much money. It’s not a business for people with thin skins or sensitive egos. People can be very critical of your work.”

“My best advise is to surround yourself with winners. Associate with people who have what you want: genuine, talented, and hard-working people. Discovery Channel’s Todd Stanley was a huge influence on me. I admire his humility and immense talent. He sparked the careers of many gifted local film industry professionals. He was a catalyst for us all.”

About Jaime Tafoya

Jaime Tafoya has more than 30 years of film media experience. He has worked on numerous reality shows, feature films and documentaries. He worked with the Emmy-winning producer of Discovery Channel’s “Deadliest Catch” and, in 2008, they created the TV Show “Experience El Dorado” for El Dorado County.

Tafoya went on to produce “Dangerous Waters” in 2010, which aired on NatGeo, and, in 2015, he served as Associate Producer of the feature film “The Divide” starring Perry King. He was nominated for a California On Location Award in 2016 at The Beverly Hilton in Hollywood, CA.

About “Story at Eleven”

A documentary based on the life of Sacramento-based filmmaker Jaime Tafoya, who, in 2017, suffered a life-altering stroke leaving him partially disabled. The documentary explores the story of the personal, emotional, and physical challenges he faced and the courage he embodies as he overcomes them. Ultimately, he realizes that the trials and tribulations he endures are universally shared by us all.

“Story at Eleven” is expected to be released December 2022.

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