Meet Will Smith on the set of Men in Black 3!

WillSmithShine Global is auctioning off a once in a lifetime opportunity!  You and one guest could meet the one and only Will Smith as you take a tour of the Men in Black III set in New York City this Spring! As you tour the set, you might even get to see other cast members such as Tommy Lee Jones, Josh Brolin and Jemaine Clement of Flight of the Conchords. After your tour, you will even get to have your picture taken with the great Will Smith and legendary director Barry Sonnenfeld!

Since the first title in the series launched in 1997, Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones have become one of the most dynamic on screen duos in movie history. Now in it’s third iteration, the “Men in Black” series has captured the imaginations of fans for nearly 15 years! Bid now to be part of this historic set and meet one of the greatest actors of our generation.

All of the proceeds from this auction will help Shine Global in our mission to end the abuse and exploitation of children worldwide.  All children have the right to a childhood and you can help this happen.

The auction ends Tuesday, May 17th at 3:oopm EST so hurry before you miss this chance!

Visit Charity Buzz: http://www.charitybuzz.com/catalog_items/265414

Watch War Dance Returns on shineglobalwebtv.com

War/Dance Returns

War/Dance Returns

Don’t forget that you can still watch War/Dance Returns, the short follow up documentary to War/Dance, streaming for free at www.shineglobalwebtv.com!

In the summer of 2008, director Sean Fine, executive producer Susan MacLaury, and the original “War Dance” film crew traveled back to Uganda for the first time since “War Dance” was filmed. Finally, the people of Uganda, were able to watch “War Dance,” the film dedicated to sharing their story with the world. Approximately 7-10 thousand of people came to see the film in the Patongo camp making a lasting impression on the entire crew as well as Rose, Nancy, and Dominic.

Rose, Nancy, and Dominic have blossomed into strong and determined young adults who have become leaders in their community. They are admired for their strength and courage, and their hope shines brighter than ever.

“War Dance Returns” aired on the Sundance Channel in May 2009 and screened at:

The Maui Film Festival 2009
The Indianapolis International Film Festival 2009
The Minneapolis-St. Paul International Film Festival 2009
DocuFest Atlanta 2009
Hollywood Film Festival 2009

US Premier of THE HARVEST/LA COSECHA at Full Frame a Success!

THE HARVEST/LA COSECHA

THE HARVEST/LA COSECHA

A Festival like this offers a sustained, concentrated exposure to the sheer emotional power of documentary filmmaking, its ability to communicate the drama embedded in human experience. In Durham last weekend, you could walk into the stately dark of the Carolina Theatre and lose yourself in real life.—A.O. Scott of The New York Times

The Full Frame Documentary Film Festival in Durham, North Carolina last week was a showcase of some of the top documentary films of the past year and Shine Global is very proud to have participated with THE HARVEST/LA COSECHA.  The program focused heavily on themes of injustice, poverty, and struggle and in this, Shine’s latest film was no exception.

Over the course of 2 years, Director U. Roberto Romano filmed 3 migrant farmworker children and their families as they journeyed back and forth across the country searching for backbreaking work in the fields in order to scrape together enough money to survive.  It is shockingly still legal in the US for children to work in the fields starting at age 12 with almost no restrictions.  Even younger children can work in agriculture as long as their parents accompany them.  This is illegal in all other industries in the US, but agriculture has been excepted since the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938.  Attempts at reform, such as Rep. Lucille Roybal-Allard’s CARE Act, have so far failed to gather enough support to change this.  The filmmakers’ hope is that THE HARVEST/LA COSEHCA will not only educate audiences about the issue but also spur them to demand reform.  “In this country we have legalized an early end to childhood” says Romano, “It will only be by changing the law that we can end this. Then and only then will these children have a true opportunity to maximize our education system and realize the American dream.”

THE HARVEST/LA COSECHA showed with the short 13 minute film “Everyone’s Nuts” by Fabian Euresti, a son of a Latino farmworker.  His family lives in a house owned by their employer in the San Joaquin Valley of California near hundreds of oil wells.  And their drinking water is poisoned.  Everybody’s Nuts is an essay and a portrait film that, according to the filmmaker, “explores the choice of two individuals whose economic circumstances helped determine where they would live.”  The two films complemented each other in telling different stories of US farmworkers’ hard life and the difficult choices they must make due to their poverty:  live with poisoned drinking water or have your children work in the fields to help support the family.

The thematic programming of the 2011 Full Frame Film Festival focused on archival footage and its place in documentary filmmaking and society at large.  The 10 featured films, curated by archivist, writer, lecturer and filmmaker Rick Prelinger, explored a cross-section of archival footage and its use that contextualized the dialogue surrounding the films in competition.  One of the films showed extensive footage of poverty during the Great Depression providing a striking similarity to the contemporary footage in THE HARVEST/LA COSECHA and revealing how little has changed for some sectors of society in the last 5 decades.   Shine Global’s first film, WAR/DANCE, is included in the Full Frame Film Archives and the aim is that 40 years from now, when people view the archival footage of WAR/DANCE and of THE HARVEST/LA COSECHA, that there will be no contemporary comparisons to be made.

Food for “motel kids” in LA

Bruno motel kids

Anaheim, California (CNN) — In the shadows of Disneyland, often referred to as the “happiest place on Earth,” many children are living a reality that’s far from carefree.

They are living in cheap motels more commonly associated with drug dealers, prostitutes and illicit affairs.

It’s the only option for many families that are struggling financially and can’t scrape together a deposit for an apartment. By living week to week in these cramped quarters, they stay one step ahead of homelessness.

“Some people are stuck, they have no money. They need to live in that room,” said Bruno Serato, a local chef and restaurateur. “They’ve lost everything they have. They have no other chance. No choice.”

While “motel kids” are found across the United States, the situation is very common in Orange County, California, a wealthy community with high rents and a large number of old motels. In 2009, local authorities estimated that more than 1,000 families lived in these conditions.

When Serato learned that these children often go hungry, he began serving up assistance, one plate at a time. To date, he’s served more than 270,000 pasta dinners — for free — to those in need.

“Kids should not be suffering,” Serato said. “[I had] to do something.”

Serato, 55, has always given back to the community where he achieved his American dream. When the Italian immigrant arrived in the U.S. 30 years ago, his poor English skills forced him to settle for a job as a dishwasher. But within five years, he had become chef and owner of the Anaheim White House, an Italian restaurant that is now a local hot spot.

In 2003, he created Caterina’s Club, which raises money for underprivileged children. The charity is named after Serato’s mother, who taught him how to cook at the family’s trattoria in Verona, Italy.
When she came to California in 2005 to visit her son, he took her to the local Boys & Girls Club, the main recipient of the charity’s funds. There, they saw a small boy eating a bag of potato chips and learned that this snack was his supper.

Bruno said his mother was shocked by the boy’s meager meal. She had raised seven children and always made sure food was on the dinner table, even during the lean years after World War II.

“My mama … her whole life was to feed kids,” he said.

The Seratos found out that the boy lived in a motel with his family. The situation was so common in the area that the Anaheim Boys & Girls Club had a “motel kids” program, where vans pick up the children after school and drop them off at the motels every night. While these children receive free breakfast and lunch through school programs, their parents often don’t have the resources to give them dinner.

Caterina found it unacceptable that the children would go to bed without supper. Speaking in rapid Italian, she made her feelings clear to her son.

“Mom said, ‘Bruno, you must feed them the pasta!’ ” Serato recalled.

To read more and to see a video please visit CNN: http://www.cnn.com/2011/LIVING/03/24/cnnheroes.serato.motel.kids/index.html

US Premier of THE HARVEST/LA COSECHA at Full Frame Film Festival; Guadalajara a great success!

Eva and Robin GuadalajaraWe are honored to announce that THE HARVEST/LA COSECHA will have its US premier at the prestigious Full Frame Documentary Film Festival in Durham, North Carolina on Thursday, April 14th. The Full Frame Documentary Film Festival is an annual international event dedicated to the theatrical exhibition of non-fiction cinema.

Each spring Full Frame welcomes filmmakers and film lovers from around the world to historic downtown Durham, North Carolina for a four-day, morning to midnight array of over 100 films as well as discussions, panels, and southern hospitality. Set within a four-block radius, the intimate festival landscape fosters community and conversation between filmmakers, film professionals and the public. The festival serves the documentary form and its community by showcasing the contemporary work of established and emerging filmmakers.  Full Frame is committed to enhancing public understanding and appreciation of the art form and its significance, while making films more accessible to a wider audience.  Tickets are on sale now: Click Here to buy

The screening at the Guadalajara International Film Festival was a very successful red carpet event.  Ticket proceeds benefited the Hospitales Civiles de Guadalajara and their programs to care for children with few resources.  Both Director U Roberto Romano and Executive Producer Eva Longoria attended and participated in a Q&A session following the screening.  It’s a disgrace that the people who feed the most well fed nation in the world go to sleep hungry,” said Longoria.  This documentary is meant to change that.  Both she and Romano emphasized the importance of respecting international child rights agreements. “More than 173 countries have agreed that the worst forms of child labor should be illegal and some of what we’ve seen tonight on the screen qualifies as illegal.  There is also another convention on the minimum working age which neither Mexico, the US, or Canada participate in,” said Romano.

Longoria emphasized that even though people don’t think this could be happening in the United States, it is.  These are American children laboring in the fields to feed us.  They are exposed to a greater risk of injury and death and at a younger age than children in any other industry and it is completely legal.  Her hope is that THE HARVEST/LA COSECHA will bring greater attention to this issue and lead to a change in child labor laws so that all American children are protected.

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