Alex Schuman’s latest documentary “Love v. Kentucky” began almost as an accident.
Schuman — who is a journalist in Washington, D.C. — was working as a television news reporter in Louisville when he accompanied Timothy Love and Larry Ysunza as they applied for, and were subsequently denied, a marriage license.
“I remember looking around and asking, ‘Is someone doing a longer story on this?’” Schuman says. “You know, it’s pretty historic.”
It turns out the answer was no, which is why Schuman began recording the events leading up to the 2015 U.S. Supreme Court vote in favor of marriage equality, making same-sex marriage legal in all 50 states.
The result is “Love v. Kentucky,” which condenses 90 hours of captured footage about the case into about 90 minutes.
Schuman — who also directed the 2015 documentary “Drop by Drop” about allergies — says his new documentary touches on both the personal side of the case and some of the complex legalities.
“What our film tries to do is capture all six of these couples’ stories from Kentucky and show you why they got involved in this case, and then also let you know more about the attorneys who fought for the case,” Schuman says. “Really explain how exactly these cases happen and how these court cases work to create so much change.”
Dan Canon was the lead Kentucky attorney for the case. He has seen a rough cut of the documentary, which he says feels different than the work other journalists have done on the case.
“They don’t really have an opportunity to get too far into the storytelling and really make that into an interesting narrative that people want to see,” Canon says. “Alex and his team were really able to do that with the marriage cases.”
“Love v. Kentucky” can now be streamed online.