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What happens when a boyhood hobby grows into a destructive obsession?

POACHED brings viewers inside the bizarre underworld of illegal wild bird egg collecting by following convicted egg offenders as they evade an army of bird lovers and wildlife crime police during "Operation Easter" in Britain. 

Egg thieves are motivated not by money but by desire for the beauty of the egg and the thrill of the chase. Thousands of eggs confiscated in police raids have been found strapped under beds, beneath floorboards, and in secret rooms. 

With unprecedented access to the most notorious and inconspicuous perpetrators, POACHED delves into the psychology of obsession. As these "eggers" confront the destructiveness of their behavior toward the very birds they profess to love, we wonder whether they can be redeemed and harnessed for good.

SXSW 2015 Nominee and Winner of the International Wildlife Film Festival.

"A serious investigation into the psychology of obsession."
- realscreen

"taking viewers right up to the edge of aberration in a way no traditional documentary can."
- New York Times

"a riveting portrait of compulsive human predators"
- Austin Chronicle

"The egg snatchers seem like such mischievous and anarchistic daredevilsthat the film at times recalls 'Exit Through the Gift Shop,'the documentary on renegade graffiti artist Banksy."
- Los Angeles Times

"Not since the audience favorite 'The King of Kong' has a documentary introduced a more fascinating and entertaining subculture."
- Bergen International Film Festival

"Unusual and underreported as it is serious and fascinating"
- indiewire

"I've never seen a film like it and neither have you."
- Mark Avery, author

Meet The Filmmakers

Timothy Wheeler, Director / Co-Producer / Director of Photography

Timothy Wheeler is a Los Angeles-based director, producer, and EMMY-nominated cinematographer. Timothy's latest film, POACHED, was nominated for the grand jury prize at SXSW 2015, won top prize at the International Wildlife Film Festival and Matsula Nature Film Festival. Timothy's directorial feature documentary debut, THE OTHER SHORE: THE DIANA NYAD STORY, had its world premiere at SXSW 2013, international premiere at Hot Docs, and was subsequently featured on Ellen, Oprah’s Super Soul Sunday, Good Morning America, and in The New Yorker. THE OTHER SHORE aired for two years on Showtime from 2013 - 2015. Timothy received a primetime EMMY nomination for Outstanding Cinematography for his work on the Discovery series WHALE WARS. Other credits include programming for PBS, AL Jazeera, The New York Times, and VICE. Wheeler’s visual artistry and storytelling career was first inspired by his contribution to various human rights organizations and nonprofits, including Human Rights Watch. Timothy is also an adjunct professor at Chapman University’s Dodge College of Film, has a Master's in Journalism from UC Berkeley, and has enjoyed travel and work in 60+ countries.

Steve Brown, Producer

Steve Brown is CEO of Ignite Channel, a producer and distributor of independent films with stories of culture, ideas and innovation with impact in our changing world. He produced the award-winning documentary features POACHED (2015) and TWINSTERS (2015), both of which premiered at SXSW 2015 before their theatrical release. Steve met the POACHED team after his feature film debut at SXSW 2013 as director and producer of SPARK: A BURNING MAN STORY (2013), which has been widely viewed on Showtime, Netflix and video on-demand channels after its theatrical release. Other films include OCCUPY THE FARM (2014) which toured 60 cities in theaters and SOCOTRA: THE HIDDEN LAND (2014) which is playing in international festivals. Steve has been an innovator, founding CEO and board member of several media and technology ventures in health and education.

Aaron Goldberg, Co-Producer / Story Consultant

Aaron Goldberg is a screenwriter, producer and story consultant. Honing story and character development with story gurus like Richard Walter, David Freeman, Michael Hauge and others, Aaron has written eight spec scripts that are now in various stages of development. After getting his degree at UC Berkeley, Aaron worked as a consumer rights lawyer and then left a legal career to study with an energy healer and gongmaster. In addition to filmmaking, Aaron leads breathwork meditation classes and sound healing circles in Los Angeles.

Eric Myerson, Editor

Eric Myerson has been nominated for a Primetime Emmy Award and 2 A.C.E. Eddie Awards as Lead Editor of the critically acclaimed documentary television series WHALE WARES. His most recent collaborations with Director Timothy Wheeler have included the feature documentary THE OTHER SHORE: THE DIANA NYAD STORY, and a 22 minute short form documentary for VICE. Eric has edited programming for various media outlets including Showtime, Fox, Animal Planet, VICE, Versus, the CW, DirecTV, BskyB, and Star. He has cut various music videos and concert films, and recently cut an $8 million Chinese action feature film titled EASTERN BANDITS. A graduate of Columbia University and the USC School of Cinematic Arts MFA program, he has a passion for visual storytelling. Shorts he has directed have received a Golden Gate Award from the San Francisco International Film Festival and have screened on PBS and at the Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art.

Mark Orton, Composer

Mark Orton is an American composer and musician. An alumnus of the Peabody Conservatory and the Hartt School of Music, he is a founding member of the San Francisco-based Tin Hat chamber music group, and is best known for his score for the Academy Award-nominated film NEBRASKA (2013). A recipient of a Sundance Composer Fellowship and nominee for Best New Composer by The International Film Music Critics Association, some of his other film credits as a composer include THE GOOD GIRL (2002), MY OLD LADY (2014) and SWEET LAND (2006), while he has written or performed songs in films including EVERYTHING IS ILLUMINATED (2005) and THE BOXTROLLS (2014). Orton lives in Portland, Oregon.

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