In September 2015, Havenbrook Media is releasing The Contender, a documentary that takes place in the winter of 2012, where Certified Master Chef Rich Rosendale and Corey Siegel earn the opportunity to represent the United States in the prestigious cooking competition known as the Bocuse d’Or. The documentary is directed by Josh Baldwin who also serves as producer along with Mark E. Trent.
Held every two years in Lyon, France, the Bocuse d’Or represents the pinnacle of competition cooking. With the United States determined to make the podium for the first time ever, Rich and Corey embark on an intense one-year training regimen that includes the construction of a secret test kitchen inside of a decommissioned cold war bunker. Together with some of America’s greatest chefs, they vied for culinary glory at the Bocuse d’Or in Lyon, France.
“This film will give you the perspective of what it is like to compete at the very top of culinary competition,” said Rosendale. “The dizzying workload and the attention to detail is unlike anything you have ever seen before. And in the end, you will see if the United States will finally make history.”
Rich Rosendale is the award-winning chef and founder of Rosendale Collective. This is the innovative company behind Rich Rosendale’s consulting, private dining, restaurant partnerships, and training services. He also is a Certified Master Chef, a distinction earned through the American Culinary Federation. The grueling 130-hour cooking exam, held at the Culinary Institute of America, has a 90% fail rate and only 67 chefs have ever made it through successfully.
Rich can be seen every Saturday morning on the Emmy® nominated CBS show “Recipe Rehab,” where he competes against Chef Vikki Krinsky to rehab a family’s unhealthy dish to create something that is delicious, nutritional and easy to make. Rich has cooked for Presidents, foreign dignitaries and celebrities around the world.
About Corey Siegel
Corey Siegel is from Albany, NY, and began cooking at the age of 14. As a student he was a serious member of the American Culinary Federation, and in 2008 began training at the Culinary Institute of America. During his time at school, he worked at Westchester Country Club in Rye, NY. Corey won the Northeast Regional Student Chef of the Year for the ACF in 2010. Corey joined the team at The Greenbrier in West Virginia in 2010, and enrolled in an intense three- year apprenticeship program at the resort overseen by Chef Richard Rosendale. Receiving over 17 medals competing both nationally and internationally, Corey is also the youngest member of ACF Culinary Team USA to compete in the Culinary Olympics in Erfurt, Germany in 2016.
Josh Baldwin received degrees from Marshall University and University of North Carolina-Wilmington before starting a media and publishing company at the age of 26. Since then, he has worked with national and international companies to develop brand awareness and help tell their stories. He is the founder of the Lewisburg Literary Festival as well as TEDx Lewisburg. He has received numerous awards for his work, including WV Executive’s “Young Guns” and The State Journal’s “40 under 40.” He serves on Lewisburg City Council and plays guitar in a rock band once the sun goes down.
Mark E. Trent
Mark Trent was born and raised in Southern West Virginia. He attended The Savannah College of Art and Design where he studied Photography and Film. Shortly after graduation he moved to NYC and began work for Group SJR, a boutique content marketing agency, where he shot branded content for General Electric, Target, Barneys, Credit Suisse, TED, among others. Mark also focuses on long form documentary projects, many of which focus on his native region of Appalachia.