Filmmakers travel country to highlight small businesses - WKRN News 2

Filmmakers travel country to highlight small businesses

Posted: Updated: July 9, 2013 11:14 AM

A local pasta factory is part of a nationwide promotional film tour.

The "American Made Movie" bus rolled into Nashville on Tuesday.

The bus will stop in 32 cities in 32 days to promote a new film about American manufacturing.

Vincent Vittorio and his business partner, Nathaniel Thomas McGill, are the men behind the film.

"It's a feature length documentary exploring the relationship we all have to manufacturing in this country," Vittorio explained.

"You hear a lot about the decline of manufacturing and while it has decreased, and jobs have decreased, there are manufacturers all over this country that are still making things that have incredible stories of entrepreneurship, that are inspiring, that inspire me," McGill said.

The film features several larger companies that are finding a way to thrive in the face of overwhelming overseas competition. It follows the swing of a Louisville Slugger bat and traces the steps of New Balance shoes.

"They're the last athletic shoe manufacturer in America, and they make 25% of their shoes here," Vittorio said of New Balance.

Not all products made and sold in the U.S. are as well known.

The Pasta Shoppe is an American, fully-operational, pasta-making factory. It's located in south Nashville and its part of the film's promotional bus tour.

"We knew if we were going to be in the pasta business, we needed to give it a new shape for it to work," said owner John Aron, who started making pasta out of his home 20 years ago.

"[Our] first product [was] Music City Pasta," he told Nashville's News 2, "little guitars, boots, and hats."

Aron soon expanded his pasta to include collegiate sports teams.

Today, his pastas come in nearly all shapes and sizes geared toward boys, girls, sports fans and party-goers. His small factory produces up to 50,000 bags of pasta per day. Most orders are placed online or through group fundraisers, and then shipped across the country and the globe.

The Pasta Shoppe is proof that American manufacturing can be successful.

"When you think about America and going forward, I think about it as kind of 'back to the future,'" Aron said. "How do we get back to our roots? How do we help support the middle class? By having good jobs for people and we love that we're a part of that."

"American Made Movie" will show the country how to be part of it too.

"When we go to the shelf and we pick up an item, we often just don't think about all the hands that it takes to get that product there," McGill said. "We look at the price and that's about as deep as we go."

He added, "So we hope the movie inspires people to think just a little bit more about the things that they're buying every single day."

An advanced screening of "American Made Movie" is set for 6:55 p.m. Tuesday at Belcourt Theatre in Hillsboro Village. Tickets for adults are $9.25.

The film premieres nationwide on August 30.

For more information, visit the "American Made Movie" Web site.

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