Janey Makes A Play is an award-winning documentary film that follows a captivating ninety-year-old woman as she rallies her small town to create a theatre production about the Great Depression amidst the real erosion of the town’s local economy. Janey has spent her life in the theatre, committing the past decade to writing and directing original plays for Rio Vista, California, a picturesque small town on the Sacramento River Delta.

Janey continually battles inconsistent rehearsal attendance, people moving away or quitting, actors memorizing their lines last-minute, and sets that are not completely assembled. If they don’t sell tickets for their performance, the troupe will not have enough money to continue to exist. Transported into rural America, we witness the challenges of pulling off a high-caliber production with an eccentric cast of characters.

We've created the Janey Makes A Play Screening Kit to give nonprofits, businesses, and community organizations an easy-to-use resource for showing the film and leading a positive discussion about creativity, local theatre and community participation!

Purchase the Screening Kit for your nonprofit, community organization, university, or public library.


The Janey Makes A Play Screening Kit is an easy-to-use resource that includes everything you'll need for planning, promoting, and hosting your community screening.

Each screening kit includes:

  • 80 min feature-length version of the film
  • Private link to 82 minutes of bonus features
  • 12-page planning and discussion guide
  • 10 postcards and 5 full-size posters
  • License to exhibit the film at your facility


The Janey Makes A Play Education Kit is an easy-to-use tool designed for sharing the film with your students, faculty, and community. The package includes everything you need to show the film and lead a discussion about the issues that are important to your organization.

Many universities, libraries, and community organizations are using Janey Makes A Play in their programs. Here are some ways you can use the film:

  • Show the film in the classroom and engage your students with a positive and fun perspective on the benefits of community theatre. You can show the entire documentary or individual chapters to illustrate points in your curriculum.
  • Add the film to your events calendar and invite the community to join the discussion. It's a powerful way to bring together a local community and inspire people to engage in the arts.
  • Add the film to your library's collection and make it available to everyone with an interest in theatre, small towns, and community.


"The film inspires. The power of intergenerational connections leaps off the screen. It provides wonderful images of the beauty, difficulties, and complexity of community."

- Dr. Selden Dee Kelley III, Pastor
San Diego 1st Church of the Nazarene


"No one is exempt from participating: just as there’s a role for everyone in each production nonagenarian Janey Callahan brings together, there is not a person alive who can watch this film without a smile. Thank you, Jared Callahan, for sharing your sweet grandmother’s spark, and for reminding us self-absorbed humans of our shared humanity and the magic that happens when we connect with each other."

- Tracy Bristol, Creative Concepts Manager and Art Director
TCU Marketing & Communication


"It’s hard not to fall in love with Janey and the people of Rio Vista. Janey Makes A Play shows the true spirit of small-town America, wrapped in a 90-year-old frame."

- Seth Conley, Professor of Documentary Studies
Trevecca Nazarene University


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What Educators are Saying

"I showed 60 of my film students the documentary, and it resonated for a number of reasons. For one thing, it was a wonderful example of a documentary film. And for another, it was a great inspiration to our small school with our limited production budget. I intend to show it to my three film classes again this year. Truly inspirational."

- Andrew Gumm, CVLCC High School Film Department


Janey Makes A Play was a huge hit with my students...not only was it educational, but it was also fun.”

- Anthony Palmiotto, Cinematic Arts Instructor at Point Loma High School


Janey Makes a Play is a beautiful film that speaks to the truth that all of us are artists, if only we realize it. To work together, to collaborate on a project that is greater than any single person could create, to be included and share our unique and particular gifts for the good of the whole and to do so with no concern for glory or praise, these are qualities that the world needs to embrace. Janey and her devoted band of theatre artists are alive because they are creating...and they are creating because they are alive.”

- Dr. Harry B. Baker, Chair of Texas Christian University Theatre Department


We offer a tiered licensing and pricing system to make the film accessible to all types of organizations. The Screening Kit includes an unlimited public performance license at one facility—contact us about purchasing multiple kits at a discount.

As independent filmmakers, we rely on your support to keep producing great documentaries and making them available to the public. Keep in mind you are legally obligated to purchase the appropriate license to show the film at your institution.

If you have any questions, please see our Licensing FAQ.


Order the Janey Makes a Play Screening Kit with the appropriate license for your institution.