3000 Cups of Tea

Utah, United States | Film Feature


Green Light

This campaign raised $28,145 for post-production. Follow the filmmaker to receive future updates on this project.

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This is the story of Greg Mortenson (author, “Three Cups of Tea” and "Stones Into Schools") and of the difference his work is making in some of the most remote and dangerous parts of the world, his meteoric rise, and the scandal that brought him to his knees and nearly destroyed his mission.

About The Project

  • The Story
  • Wishlist
  • Updates
  • The Team
  • Community

The Story

In 2000 and again in 2002 Jeff Rhoads and I made the arduous, week-long journey into base camp at the foot of K2, the world’s second highest mountain, to research future books and shoot a documentary for National Geographic. Those treks took us through scores of remote mountain villages, many of which had only one building with four plumb walls standing among the mud and stone huts. Those buildings turned out to be Central Asia Institute schools.

Then in 2011, “60 Minutes” charged that many of those schools didn’t exist and that the Institute’s founder, Greg Mortenson, had used the foundation as his “personal ATM.” Having helped us with both of our expeditions through the troubled and fractious Northern Territories of Pakistan, Mortenson had become a friend and colleague. When he came to Salt Lake only months after the attacks of 9-11, I interviewed him about his experience building schools for girls in the nexus of the Taliban and Al Qaeda’s powerbase.

So I watched the “60 Minutes” segment feeling horror and heartbreak; horror because of the irreparable damage being done to not only a man but to his invaluable mission of building schools and educating girls, and heartbreak because no matter the truth or falsehood of the allegations, Mortenson’s epitaph was being written by his enemies.

Jeff and I were also confused: we had seen the schools and met the man, so none of what we were watching made sense. We decided to find out for ourselves what had happened -- with Mortenson, with his schools, and perhaps, with the state of American journalism.

“3000 Cups of Tea” is the result of that investigation. 

The filming of this documentary has been completed and we are now raising funds for post-production expenses, which include editing, color correction, score, film festival expenses, marketing and advertising.


Use the WishList to Pledge cash and Loan items - or - Make a pledge by selecting an Incentive directly.

Cash Pledge

Costs $0

G-Technology® Hard Drive ($500)

Costs $500

G-Technology® is the gold standard for storage solutions specifically designed for content creators. We’ll get a storage grant from them when we get the Green Light!

Sound Sweetening

Costs $1,000

Audio may require a little “sweetening” to match the quality of the footage.


Costs $5,000

Great Composers are gifted artists and, as such, are paid well.


Costs $1,500

Sometimes a sunset is too dark or a face is too bright but a lot of that can be fixed in the edit.


Costs $15,000

Someone needs to cut all the footage together properly.

Legal Services

Costs $5,000

Yup - this is an expensive one but it covers our contracts, clearances, legal advice, etc.

Publicity & Advertising

Costs $5,000

Travel and venue expenses for Film Festivals, Screenings and for Publicity and Advertising.

Distribution Strategy

Costs $1,500

Meeting with Distributors to get the film out to market.


Costs $500

If something goes wrong we can fix it and move forward.

About This Team

Director, Producer, Writer - Jennifer Jordan


Jennifer Jordan is an award-winning author, filmmaker, and screenwriter, with over thirty years experience as a journalist, broadcast producer, radio and television news anchor, voice-over/narration talent, and motivational speaker.

She is the author of Savage Summit: The Life and Death of the First Women of K2, and The Last Man on The Mountain: The Death of an American Adventurer on K2, both of which won the National Outdoor Book Award.

She also has produced and written several documentaries, among them Women of K2, Kick Like a Girl, and Boys of Bonneville. She is currently directing and producing, 3000 Cups of Tea: The Mission and the Madness of Greg Mortenson.

Jordan spent most of the 1980s and ‘90s in Boston where she anchored National Public Radio’s All Things Considered from WGBH FM, and Harvard University, where she directed its premiere speaking arena for visiting dignitaries.

She co-owns Skyline Ventures Productions with her husband, cinematographer and adventurer Jeff Rhoads, in Salt Lake City, where she spends as much of her free time as possible exploring the backcountry of the Wasatch Mountains.


Director of Photography, Co-Producer - Jeff Rhoads


Jeff Rhoads is an award-winning filmmaker, record-holding mountaineer, and extreme adventurer, whose work has taken him from the summit of Mount Everest, through the rivers of Costa Rica, to the Cathedral of Saint John the Divine in New York City and the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City. He directed the award-winning documentary Women of K2, and has shot for every major network and cable station, as well as several major motion picture studios, while filming a huge variety of television, commercial, and industrial projects.

In 2002 he traveled to Pakistan to direct, produce, and film at high altitude Women of K2 for National Geographic Channel. An official entry in over seventeen international film festivals, the film went on to win five major awards, including the Best Film on Mountaineering at the 2004 Vancouver International Film Festival and the Jury Award at the 2005 Torello International Film Festival in Spain.

In addition to National Geographic, Rhoads has also worked for ABC, CBS, NBC, ESPN, Fox, Warner Brothers, Paramount Pictures, Sony Pictures, Discovery, TBS, The Learning Channel, Bravo, VERSUS, VH-1, A&E, TBS, TLC, Sundance Channel, OLN, E and USA Networks.

On his fourth trip to Mount Everest in 1998, Rhoads and Tashi Sherpa became the first and only men to summit the world’s highest mountain twice in a single week, all the while filming a documentary for CBS. And in 1999 he returned to the Khumbu region and became the first American to climb Nuptse, a 7900-meter peak neighboring Everest.

Rhoads is a renowned extreme skier, having performed numerous first descents throughout the Rocky Mountains, most notably the Grand Teton’s notorious Ford Couloir and he was the second to descend its famed Stettner Couloir. He was the first person to perform a nordic ski traverse of North America’s highest mountain, Denali, in Alaska. He also is an acclaimed rock and ice climber, with many first ascents throughout the desert Southwest to his name, including the Rhoads to Nowhere in Idaho’s Castle Rock area.

He co-owns and operates Skyline Ventures Productions in Salt Lake City with his wife, author and filmmaker, Jennifer Jordan.


Associate Producer - Sharon Spaulding


Sharon Spaulting is an expert in marketing and communications, having worked with private individuals, artists, authors, small businesses, nonprofits and multi-nationals, designing and implementing strategy across multipal platforms from brand identity to product rollout.  She has exensive experience in cause marketing (matching corporations and nonprofits), and in fundraising and grassroots organizing for NGO's.  Her resume includes ghost-writing articles and speeches, producing educational and promotional videos and all manner of marketing materials.


Editor --  L. Matthew Kjar


L. Matthew Kjar has seen the world ...through his edit bay. He’s been to the Middle East, all over Africa, Europe, North and South America... if only he could climb through the screen to the actual places. His work has been seen throughout the world too. Ranging from large scale events such as 6 of the last 7 Olympic Games, Sundance film festival, and syndicated television shows to documentaries, marketing campaigns, and instructional videos. Matt’s done it all. 

All this virtual and actual travel has the same goal to tell the human story. Matt just happens to tell it through video.


Campaign Director --  Susan McEvoy


Susan McEvoy's introduction into the film industry began over 20 years ago in Boston when she began writing screenplays.  She studied under Michael Hague and was part of a three-year mentoring program with Roderick Thorp, screenwriter and best-selling author of Die Hard. 


Since then, she has completed several feature-length scripts, writer-for-hire projects and was a screenplay analyst for the former National Writers Workshop in Los Angeles, a non-profit foundation dedicated to nurturing new writers.


Since moving to Utah in 2011, she has worked in various film and writing projects.  She produced the feature film “Hello, I Love You,” in 2014 and is currently producing the upcoming film, Hellskate.


Sue serves on the Board of Directors for Utah Women in Film.


Production Assistant -- Chelsea Adams


Chelsea Adams took a documentary film class at SkyHop in Salt Lake City and quickly became interested in the writing side of documentary filmmaking.  She graduated from Brighan Young University with a Bachelors in English and a minor in editing.  She does freelance editing, transcribes video footage and other projects, teaches English Composition at Weber State University and is currently working toward a Master's Degree in English.  She enjoys helping people tell their stories through film and the written word.


Current Team