The HAZE documentary was originally released in 2008, and an updated version of the film was released on Gordie's birthday in 2018. The film shares the story of Gordie Bailey's 2004 death at the University of Colorado in Boulder from alcohol overdose caused by fraternity hazing.
Since 2008, more than 700 high schools, colleges, and community organizations have purchased the film to incorporate into their educational efforts. HAZE is a powerful educational tool that can spark in-depth conversations about the role of alcohol and “traditions” to initiate members, as well as motivate audience members to intervene in a hazing situation or alcohol emergency. We consistently receive feedback that the film and discussion after a screening positively impact students, parents, and campus culture, allowing conversations about what it means to be a valued member of a group, the barriers that prevent intervention on a campus, and how to be an active bystander.
The film uniquely weaves together a collection of interviews, many by national experts on the subjects of hazing and alcohol, with Gordie's story. While the film does contain graphic photographs from the crime scene after Gordie's death, it is appropriate for all high school and college audiences.
Presented on film are a number of experts in the field, including Walter Kimbrough, President of Dillard University and the leading expert witness on hazing cases in the United States. Dr. Aaron White, a biological psychologist (neuroscientist) with the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, is also featured, along with hazing expert and Dean of Students at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute Travis Apgar.
Others featured are Barrett Seaman, former TIME Magazine reporter and author of the book Binge, Excess in the Age of Disconnection; Dr. Susan Lipkins, hazing expert and author of Preventing Hazing: How Parents, Teachers and Coaches Can Stop the Violence, Harassment, and Humiliation; and Dr. Richard Schwartzstein, Director of The Academy at Harvard Medical School.
Produced by the Colorado Springs, CO film company Watt Imagination!, the original 2008 documentary and the 2018 updated film is directed by Pete Schuermann, who includes among his credits film projects for The Walt Disney Company, MGM Lions Gate, Raytheon, and Yamaha.