September 7, 2017, 7:00 P.M.
The Ray Stark Family Theatre, SCA 108, George Lucas Building, USC School of Cinematic Arts Complex, 900 W. 34th Street, Los Angeles, CA 90007
Outside the Box [Office], USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism, USC Levan Institute for Humanities and Ethics, USC Contemporary Latino and Latin American Studies Major, USC Department of American Studies & Ethnicity, USC Center for Diversity and Democracy, USC Center for the Study of Immigrant Integration (CSII), and PBS Distribution
Invite you and a guest to a special preview screening of
Written & Directed by Peter Bratt
Produced by Peter Bratt and Brian Benson
Followed by a Q&A with Peter Bratt and Dolores Huerta
7:00 P.M. on Thursday, September 7th, 2017
The Ray Stark Family Theatre, SCA 108
900 W. 34th Street, Los Angeles, CA 90007
FREE ADMISSION. OPEN TO THE PUBLIC. RSVPs REQUIRED.
Winner: Audience Award, Best Doc - San Francisco Intl. Film Festival; Audience Award, Best Doc - Montclair Film Festival; Golden Space Needle Award, Best Doc - Seattle International Film Festival.
Official Selection: 2017 Sundance Film Festival; 2017 AFI Docs.
Opens at Landmark's Nuart Theater on Friday, September 8th, 2017.
Dolores Huerta is among the most important, yet least known, activists in American history. An equal partner in co-founding the first farm workers unions with Cesar Chavez, her enormous contributions have gone largely unrecognized. Dolores tirelessly led the fight for racial and labor justice alongside Chavez, becoming one of the most defiant feminists of the twentieth century-and she continues the fight to this day, at 87. With intimate and unprecedented access to this intensely private mother to eleven, the film reveals the raw, personal stakes involved in committing one's life to social change.
Provided courtesy of PBS Distribution. Not rated. Running time: 97 minutes. In English and Spanish, with English subtitles.
Visit the Official Website: https://www.doloresthemovie.com/
Visit the Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/doloresthemovie
Visit the Twitter Page: https://www.twitter.com/dolores_movie
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In 2009, in the days leading up to the commercial release of La Mission (my second feature), Latino activists around the nation put out a call asking people and businesses across the country to boycott the state of Arizona for passing SB-1070, a controversial senate bill that essentially gave police permission to racially profile Latinos. Faced with the dilemma of whether or not to go to Arizona to promote the film, I called activist and community elder Dolores Huerta for her advice. Before I could finish explaining my conundrum, Dolores insisted that “Our Latino people need stories like this more than ever. Not only should you go, but I’ll go with you!”
And so – true to her word – she did go with me and helped introduce the film. The primarily Latino audience was nervous about the national conversation surrounding the fate of our culture and our people, and by Dolores' estimation, in need of reassurance that we are immovably, undeniably, permanently here to stay – as we have always been. Of course, they loved her. She was at once calming and inciting, the warmth and charisma of her presence was undeniable. I was, in a word, amazed.
You see, as a child of the movement, the son of a single Peruvian Indian mother who marched with Dolores and celebrated labor leader Cesar Chavez back in the early 70’s, I chanted “brown is beautiful” at 10 years of age, and held them both in a kind of awed respect for their work and their reputation. And now, here I was, hosting Q&A’s with Dolores Huerta – “Super Chicana” – in an Arizona multiplex. Rapt, I watched her warm interaction and tireless enthusiasm with the audience that day, and I wondered why there wasn’t yet a film about such an important and influential figure. I specifically remember thinking, “If only I was a documentary filmmaker…”
Then one day, some five years later – just like in the movies – the phone rang. The person on the other end was rock music icon Carlos Santana. In a mysterious and quietly urgent voice he whispered, “We need to make a documentary about sister Dolores, while she’s still with us.” There was little doubt in my mind that this was not so much a question as it was a cultural directive, an artist's call to action from one storyteller to another to fulfill a historical obligation. Even in the silence immediately following his words, we both knew there was only one way for me to respond. And yet I panicked, in part because I knew nothing about making a doc – but more to the point, because I knew that a truly worthy story would have to present not simply a courageous iconic figure and her list of triumphs, but a fully fleshed human being, warts and all. With both excitement and trepidation, I replied, "What do you have in mind?" As it turned out, the answer was quite a lot.
In the copious volumes written about legendary civil rights activist Cesar Chavez and how he formed the first farm workers’ union in America, there is comparatively little mentioned about Dolores Huerta, his equal partner and co-founder of the union, an equally formidable labor leader and civil rights organizer who had fought (and to this day still fights) tirelessly for the liberation of workers, women, and immigrants for nearly seven decades. Why was this? What had happened? Was her story lost accidentally, or left out deliberately? Why had she been erased? It didn’t make sense. But it made for a great story.
After interviewing farm workers, scholars, politicians, feminists, labor historians, and 10 of her 11 biological children, one thing became crystal clear: her erasure from the historical record was deliberate. And if Dolores had been excised, then only she could tell her story. Directly, calmly. Her voice. Her life. Her words.
As we worked on the film, Dolores’ voice revealed a woman both heroic and flawed. Her courage in speaking without filters deepened the narrative and naturally delivered a framework within which to organize the reams of material I had unearthed. Processing Dolores’ story and attempting to put it into a larger historical context ultimately begged the question—who decides what history is? Who decides which stories are told? And who gets to tell them?
In this consolidated, never-before-seen collection of personal memories, historical documentation and compelling first-person narrative, Dolores Huerta emerges as more than just a footnote to 20th century America - she proves to be a true American hero. And like many great figures held in an equally high regard, she is also revealed to be utterly mortal, a woman whose unconventional choices and personal sacrifices expose her humanity.
My hope is that people might now see Dolores' story as part of their own, one that perhaps allows them to more fully, more honestly, understand the last 50 years in America’s history and how it connects to and informs where we find ourselves today.
- Peter Bratt, Director
About the Guests
DOLORES HUERTA (President and Founder of the Dolores Huerta Foundation, Co-Founder of the United Farm Workers of America)
Dolores Huerta is a labor leader and community organizer. She has worked civil rights and social justice for over 50 years. In 1962 she and Cesar Chavez founded the United Farm Workers union. She served as vice-president and played a critical role in many of the union’s accomplishments for four decades. In 2002, she received the Puffin/Nation $100,000 prize for Creative Citizenship which she used to establish the Dolores Huerta Foundation (DHF). DHF is connecting groundbreaking community-based organizing to state and national movements to register and educate voters; advocate for education reform; bring about infrastructure improvements in low-income communities; advocate for greater equality for the LGBT community; and create strong leadership development. She has received numerous awards: among them The Eleanor Roosevelt Humans Rights Award from President Clinton in l998. In 2012 President Obama bestowed Dolores with The Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest civilian award in the United States.
PETER BRATT (Writer/Director/Producer)
Peter Bratt is an award-winning screenwriter and independent filmmaker whose first feature Follow Me Home premiered in competition at the 1996 Sundance Film Festival and won the Best Feature Film Audience Award that same year at the San Francisco International Film Festival. In 2009, he and his brother Benjamin produced La Mission, a feature film shot on location in their hometown of San Francisco. The film, which Peter wrote and directed, premiered at the 2009 Sundance Film Festival and was the opening night film at the 2009 San Francisco International Film Festival, the 2009 New York International Latino Film Festival, and the 2009 Outfest Film Festival in Los Angeles. For his work on La Mission, Peter received the prestigious Norman Lear Writer’s Award and was one of ten American independent filmmakers selected by Sundance and the President’s Committee on Arts and Humanities to launch Sundance Film Forward, a program that uses film and conversation to excite and introduce a new generation to the power of story. Peter is a San Francisco Film Commissioner and a long-time consultant for the Friendship House Association of American Indians, a local non-profit serving the Bay Area’s Native population.
About Outside the Box [Office]
Outside the Box [Office] is a weekly showcase for upcoming releases highlighting world cinema, documentary and independent film titles. Recognizing a need for greater diversity on campus, the series will draw from around the globe to present movies that may challenge, inspire or simply entertain.
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About the Co-Sponsors
USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism
The Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism is a national leader in education and scholarship in the fields of communication, journalism, public diplomacy and public relations. With an enrollment of more than 2,200 students, USC Annenberg offers doctoral, master's and bachelor's degree programs, as well as continuing development programs for working professionals across a broad scope of academic inquiry. The school's comprehensive curriculum emphasizes the core skills of leadership, innovation, service and entrepreneurship and draws upon the resources of a networked university located in the media capital of the world.
Originally founded in 1971 with generous support from Ambassador Walter H. Annenberg, the USC Annenberg School for Communication was renamed the USC Annneberg School for Communication and Journalism in 1994 in recognition of the critically important role journalism plays in a democratic society and USC's role as a leading institution for educating and training journalists.
USC Levan Institute for Humanities and Ethics
The USC Levan Institute for Humanities and Ethics engages students with the timeless values at the core of our humanity. In this effort, we seek moral reflection, understanding of self, and multidisciplinary dialogue. Levan students are encouraged to make a positive impact across society and around the world. With hundreds of participating faculty and over 3,000 students involved each year, the Institute hosts dozens of seminars, informal discussions, distinguished scholars, and arts events each semester.
USC Contemporary Latino and Latin American Studies Major
As the Hispanic population of California approaches fifty percent, an understanding of the cultural heritage and contemporary perspective of Latinos and Latinas in the United States and in the countries south of the border becomes essential for anyone engaged in business, diplomacy, or social change in the western hemisphere.
The interdisciplinary Bachelor of Arts in Contemporary Latino and Latin American Studies provides the opportunity for undergraduates to gain a general understanding of this area of scholarship and research and to focus their interests to reflect their personal aspirations. The major requires nine courses (36 units), two at the lower-division (100 and 200) level and seven at the upper-division (300 and 400) level. Together this curriculum prepares students for careers that respect the diversity of heritage giving rise to new political and economic opportunities in the Americas.
USC Department of American Studies and Ethnicity (ASE)
The Department of American Studies and Ethnicity (ASE) at USC is a multi-disciplinary department that investigates the multi-faceted problems of race, immigration, urban geography, culture, power, gender, sexuality and social justice. We engage students and the public to understand diversity, the consequences of disparity and inequity, and the enactment of community and citizenship in Los Angeles, California, the United States and the world. We seek to investigate and explain stratification based on race, gender, class, sexuality, and religion and examine the texture of lived experience and imagination of varied communities and their struggles towards equity and justice.
Our signature department profile consists of: Ethnic & Racial Studies; Power and Social Justice Studies; Gender & Sexuality Studies; and Transnational/Global Studies.
USC Center for the Study of Immigrant Integration (CSII)
The mission of the Center for the Study of Immigrant Integration (CSII) is to remake the narrative for understanding, and to shape the dialogue, on immigrant integration in America. CSII intends to identify and evaluate the mutual benefits of immigrant integration for the native-born and immigrants and to study the pace of the ongoing transformation in different locations, not only in the past and present but projected into the future.
CSII brings together three emphases: scholarship that draws on academic theory and rigorous research, data that provides information structured to highlight the process of immigrant integration over time, and engagement that seeks to create new dialogues with government, community organizers, business and civic leaders, immigrants and the voting public.
USC Center for Diversity and Democracy
The CDD works with faculty members, Ph.D. students, undergraduate students, and community partners to enhance, explore and develop strong connections between efforts of university-community civic engagement and the diversity of university faculty and students. We are committed to making stronger a diverse set of voices at the university, while enabling a wide variety of community members and organizations to engage the university as equal partners towards equity and social justice.
Check-In & Reservations
This screening is free of charge and open to the public. Please bring a valid USC ID or print out of your reservation confirmation, which will automatically be sent to your e-mail account upon successfully making an RSVP through this website. Doors will open at 6:30 P.M.
All SCA screenings are OVERBOOKED to ensure seating capacity in the theater, therefore seating is not guaranteed based on RSVPs. The RSVP list will be checked in on a first-come, first-served basis until the theater is full. Once the theater has reached capacity, we will no longer be able to admit guests, regardless of RSVP status.
The USC School of Cinematic Arts is located at 900 W. 34th St., Los Angeles, CA 90007. Parking passes may be purchased for $12.00 at USC Entrance Gate #5, located at the intersection of W. Jefferson Blvd. & McClintock Ave. We recommend Parking Structure D, at the far end of 34th Street. Metered street parking is also available along Jefferson Blvd.
Name: Alessandro Ago