In the first episode of his “Passion Projects” series, filmmaker Andrew Leibman created “Rooftop Refuge“, a beautifully shot short documentary about aviculturist Dave Malone. Malone, a native of Brownsville, Brooklyn, proudly stayed out of trouble because he preferred going up to the rooftop to care for and fly his pigeons. Calling it “love at first sight”, Malone began taking care of birds at the age of ten and has been doing so for the past forty years, watching the streets from his perch on the roof.
I was keeping away from the streets keeping away from the drugs. I never smoked or drank in my life …you know I’m 50 years old now and I grew up in Brownsville Brooklyn with drugs …and alcohol was rampant I could have had it, anything I want at any given time but that wasn’t my calling you know. …I’ll be up here with the birds and in summertime I could literally go up on the roof of the birds at seven o’clock in the morning and literally come down by 9:30 at night when it’s dark outside. … I mean I’m up here watching what’s going on down there.
“Rooftop Refuge” was featured in the National Geographic Short Film Showcase.
Malone’s birds in flight.