John Lucas was born and raised in Ohio. In the late 80's, as a volunteer in the Big Brother/Big Sister program, he got to know kids in Akron's North Hill neighborhood. His photo-essay entitled, "The Flag Series," documented these children's relationship to the American Flag.
Over the years he returned to Akron and kept up with many of the people he met in North Hill. He wanted to understand the forces that were carrying the community, seemingly inevtiably, into crime, incarceration, and early death. He followed the story of the four "Cooler Bandits," their trial and sentencing, and a decade ago, anticipating their release, began making the film "The Cooler Bandits."
John has worked as a documentary photographer for more than 20 years. He has directed and produced several cutting-edge multimedia projects and brought to "The Cooler Bandits" the experiences of nearly a quarter-century of social criticism in the arts. "The Cooler Bandits" is his first feature film.