Shine Global’s latest film Inocente was honored with an Academy Award® for Best Documentary Short last night. Shine and the directors Sean and Andrea Fine had been nominated previously for their film War/Dance but this was their first time on the stage, and they brought Inocente herself up with them. “To see the look on Inocente’s face as she held the Oscar onstage and to see all of Hollywood smile back at her,” said Producer and Shine co-Founder Albie Hecht, ”gives me hope that this film can help improve the lives of America’s children.”
The film chronicles Inocente, an irresistibly likeable young girl who has overcome poverty, her undocumented status, and homelessness to win widespread recognition for her whimsical, colorful artworks. Color is her revolution.
We come to Inocente’s story as she realizes her life is at a turning point, and for the first time, she decides to take control of her own destiny. Irreverent, flawed and funny, she’s now channeling her irrepressible personality into a future she controls. Her talent has finally been noticed, and if she can create a body of work in time, she has an opportunity to put on her first art show, a high profile affair that she knows has the potential to launch her career. Meanwhile, her family life is at a tense impasse— to leave home is terrifying but to stay is unbearable.
Executive Producer and Shine co-founder Susan MacLaury says the filmmakers ”hope that people will be inspired by the film to help the 1.5 million homeless children, 1.8 million undocumented children, and thousands of children whose lives have been positively affected by arts programs, that Inocente speaks for.” Shine has created companion curricula for teachers who want to use the film in the classroom that meet national standards. Along with Producer Yael Melamede of Salty Features and several non-profit partners, they have also created companion arts workshops that communities, museums, and libraries across the country can use at a screening to engage youth on the important issues depicted in the film.
Congressional Screening of Oscar-Nominated Documentary, INOCENTE, The Triumphant Story of a Homeless Latina Teenage Artist
Tuesday, February 5, 2013, 10:30 AM – 11:30 AM in HVC 201, Washington, DC
Star, Filmmakers, and Advocates to Discuss Impact and Policy Issues of Documentary
Washington, D.C. – INOCENTE, an Oscar-nominated coming-of-age documentary about a vibrant Latina teenage artist from a dauntingly tough background in San Diego who refuses to allow her struggles with poverty and homelessness to get in the way of her extraordinary talent, will be screened at the House Visitors Center on Tuesday, February 5, 2013 with the stars, filmmakers and advocates.
The screening comes on the heels of the introduction of bipartisan comprehensive immigration legislation.
WHO: Documentary star, Inocente,
Matt D’Arrigo, ARTS Executive Director
Producer Yael Melamede, Salty Features
Executive Producer Susan MacLaury, Shine Global
Barbara Duffield, Policy Director for The National Association for the Education of Homeless Children and Youth
WHAT: Screening and discussion of the Oscar-nominated documentary, INOCENTE
WHERE: House Visitors Center, Room 201
WHEN: Tuesday, February 5, 2013 from 10:30 AM – 11:30 AM (40 minute film)
Directors Sean Fine and Andrea Nix Fine said, “More than a million and a half children are homeless in America today, yet they are invisible. We wanted to share a story that was personal and shared this experience and Inocente had the courage to open her life to us.”
We come to Inocente’s story as she realizes her life is at a turning point, and for the first time, she decides to take control of her own destiny. Irreverent, flawed and funny, she’s now channeling her irrepressible personality into a future she controls. Her talent has finally been noticed, and if she can create a body of work in time, she has an opportunity to put on her first art show, which she knows has the potential to launch her career. Meanwhile, her family life is at a tense impasse— to leave home is terrifying but to stay is unbearable.
Neither sentimental nor sensational, INOCENTE will immerse you in the very real, day-to-day existence of a young girl who is battling a war that we never see. This film will usher you into the secret life she returns to at the end of every day, where she navigates the instability, despair, and neglect of a situation she must endure through no fault of her own. The challenges are staggering, but the hope in Inocente’s story proves that her circumstances not define her—her dreams do.
The film was produced by Shine Global, a non-profit film production company dedicated to ending the exploitation and abuse of children through the production of films that raise awareness and promote social change. Advocacy organizations, including the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund (MALDEF) and A Reason to Survive (ARTS), moved by the film’s genuine and beautiful telling of Inocente’s story are partnering with Shine to promote the film’s use in advocacy for arts education funding, the homeless, and immigration reform.
Sean Fine and Andrea Nix Fine of Fine Films are Academy Award® nominated directors who have been directing and producing documentaries for the last decade for both theater and broadcast outlets. Their film War/Dance won several awards including 2 Emmys and the 2008 Academy Award® nomination for Best Documentary.
Yael Melamede co-founded the independent film production company Salty Features in 2003 to make feature films that showcase unique vision, strong storytelling, and thought-provoking subject matter. Her films include Small Beautifully Moving Parts, Brief Interviews with Hideous Men, and the Academy Award®-nominated documentary, My Architect.
Albie Hecht and Susan MacLaury co-founded Shine Global. They produced and executive produced the Academy Award®-nominated and Emmy Award-winning War/Dance and The Harvest/La Cosecha. Previously, as head of Nickelodeon Films and Television, Albie had been nominated for an Academy Award® for Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius.
Media Contact: Naomi Seligman, (310) 617.4577