Following a limited theatrical release across the United States in November, filmmaker Anike Tourse and production company CHIRLA Liberty Film’s debut feature America’s Family held a special screening at the Consulate General of Mexico in Los Angeles on Wednesday, December 6th. The screening began with an introduction from the Consul General of Mexico, and was followed by a Q&A panel with Tourse, the Coalition of Humane Immigrant Rights (CHIRLA) executive director Angelica Salas, lawyer Jessica Dominguez, and journalist Pilar Marrero, and a reception attended by Power 106 (KPWR-FM) radio host Melissa Rios, Acapulco actresses Carolina Moreno and Camila Perez, and others.
America’s Family is a powerfully moving docudrama about the immigrant experience that previously screened at Dances with Films (Grand Jury Award for Features and Audience Award for Competition Features), Roxbury International Film Festival (Best Narrative Feature Award), Maui Film Festival, and Addis International Film Festival. It follows a mother who is arrested and detained, her husband who flees for sanctuary, their eldest son who is deported to Mexico, and their two American-born children—a young attorney and his teen sister—who are left racing to do whatever they can to reunite the family after ICE raids their home on Thanksgiving.
Multimedia writer, director, producer, and actor Anike Tourse has credits in front of and behind the camera. In theater, she has written, performed, and toured several solo productions internationally, including at the largest performing arts festival in the world: Edinburgh Fringe Festival. In television, she has written for series such as Girlfriends. In film, she has written and directed the award-winning short America; I Too, distributed by New Day Films, and is currently in development on the animated short Frances The Fish.
Tourse comments, “We are thrilled that America’s Family is inspiring audiences to support immigrant youth and to advocate for laws for family unity in lieu of detention and deportation. The film is resonating with audiences, reminding them that the unjustly deported are a part of our families and communities, and that they should have a say in the future of immigration and the right to remain with or return to their loved ones—as we all should.”
CHIRLA Liberty Film, led by executive director Angela Salas, which advocates for the human and civil rights of immigrants and refugees, advancing justice and inclusion through educating, organizing, and defending in the courts, halls of power, and streets. CHIRLA Liberty Film has produced the three-part short film series Know Your Rights that focuses on empowering audiences with information and insights about the undocumented immigrant and mixed-status family experience, especially with law enforcement.