CINEDIGM’S DOCURAMA FILMS RELEASES “HALF THE SKY: TURNING OPPRESSION INTO OPPORTUNITY FOR WOMEN WORLDWIDE,” INSPIRED BY THE BEST-SELLING BOOK, NOVEMBER 13 ON DVD; EARLY DIGITAL RELEASE OCTOBER 3
4-Hour PBS Special Follows Pulitzer Prize Winner Nicholas Kristof and U.S. Advocates America Ferrera, Diane Lane, Eva Mendes, Meg Ryan, Gabrielle Union and Olivia Wilde on an Unforgettable Journey To Global Hotspots Of Gender Inequality
August 13, 2011 – New York, New York – Across the globe oppression is being confronted, and real meaningful solutions are being fashioned through health care, education, and economic empowerment for women and girls. The linked problems of sex trafficking and forced prostitution, gender-based violence, and maternal mortality — which needlessly claim one woman every 90 seconds — present to us the single most vital opportunity of our time: to make a change. All over the world women are seizing this opportunity.
Filmed in 10 countries, HALF THE SKY: TURNING OPPRESSION INTO OPPORTUNITY FOR WOMEN WORLDWIDE, based on the widely acclaimed book by The New York Times reporters and Pulitzer Prize winners Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn, follows Kristof and celebrity advocates America Ferrera, Diane Lane, Eva Mendes, Meg Ryan, Gabrielle Union and Olivia Wilde on journeys to Africa, India and Southeast Asia to tell the stories of inspiring, courageous individuals.
Docurama Films, a label of Cinedigm Digital Cinema Corp. (NASDAQ: CIDM)’s Entertainment Group, will release HALF THE SKY: TURNING OPPRESSION INTO OPPORTUNITY FOR WOMEN WORLDWIDE on DVD on November 13. An early digital release of October 3 is timed to the national and international broadcast premiere of the 4-hour series on PBS’s Independent Lens, introduced by George Clooney, on October 1 and 2.
A landmark transmedia project supported by ITVS’s Women & Girls Lead public media campaign, HALF THE SKY: TURNING OPPRESSION INTO OPPORTUNITY FOR WOMEN WORLDWIDE features the primetime broadcast event, DVD release, a social media campaign supporting over 30 partner NGOs, a Facebook-hosted social action game and mobile games created by Games for Change, educational curriculum, and two websites – all inspired by the 2009 bestseller, Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide.
“Half the Sky tackles atrocities and indignities from sex trafficking to maternal mortality, from obstetric fistulas to acid attacks, and absorbing the fusillade of horrors can feel like an assault of its own. But the poignant portraits of survivors humanize the issues, divulging facts that moral outrage might otherwise eclipse.” – The New York Times Book Review
Gender-Based Violence/Sierra Leone:
Eva Mendes and Nicholas Kristof investigate gender-based violence in Sierra Leone, a country where most of the assaults and rapes go unreported. They meet with Amie Kandeh, who works with the International Rescue Committee and runs three of West Africa’s sexual assault referral centers.
In Cambodia, where 30 percent of prostitutes are children, Half the Sky examines the issue of sex trafficking. Meg Ryan and Kristof meet Somaly Mam, herself sold into slavery as a young girl, but who is now a world-renowned leader in the anti-trafficking struggle. Mam runs a center to rehabilitate and educate girls rescued from brothels.
Gabrielle Union and Kristof visit Vietnam with former Microsoft marketing executive John Wood, who started Room to Read, an organization which works to promote literacy and equal education for girls across the developing world. In Vietnam women have been traditionally devalued, and many girls are kept at home to tend to household chores while boys continue their education.
Maternal Mortality/ Somaliland:
“Half a million women a year die in childbirth,” says Nicholas Kristof. “It’s not biology that’s killing them but neglect.” Diane Lane and Kristof investigate maternal mortality in Somaliland, where 1 in 12 women die in childbirth due to poor nutrition and the effects of female genital mutilation (FGM)—also known as cutting — a brutal ritual that has been performed on more than 130 million women around the world. They meet with Edna Adan, founder of the Edna Adan Maternity Hospital, Somaliland’s first maternal health facility.
In India it is estimated that 90 percent of sex workers’ daughters follow their mothers into prostitution and, of the 3 million prostitutes in the country, 1.2 million are children. In Kolkata, America Ferrera and Kristof visit the Kalighat red-light district to meet Urmi Basu, who is working to break the tradition of forced prostitution passed down from mothers to daughters.
Each of these stories puts a human face to an otherwise abstract idea or string of statistics that could never convey the true human cost of the discrimination and abuse suffered by hundreds of millions. These stories also illuminate the spirit of perseverance that is embodied by the women and girls who face these violations each day, and those who have made it their life’s mission to help them.
Show of Force (Marina Abramovic: The Artist is Present, Mann v. Ford, Carrier, Circus), is the production arm of HALF THE SKY: Maro Chermayeff, executive producer and director; Mikaela Beardsley, Jamie Gordon and Jeff Dupre, executive producers; Joshua Bennett, producer; Mira Chang, series producer.
More than 90 minutes of bonus features, including 40 minutes of exclusive material, on the 2-DVD set includes: Extended and deleted scenes and interviews; PSAs; Trailers; Mini-campaign videos; Take Action: Next Steps; Bonus content from Games for Change.
Pricing: $29.95 US/$34.95 CAN
Runtime: 224 minutes + extras
Catalog #: NNVG272811
Digital Catalog #: NNVG10001905
Audio Format: Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo
About Docurama Films
In 1999, Docurama Films® launched with the first feature documentary ever available on DVD: D.A. Pennebaker’s Bob Dylan: Dont Look Back. Twelve years and 300 award-winning, highly-acclaimed titles later, Docurama continues to discover and release the greatest non-fiction films of our time while spreading the word about filmmakers who are taking the form to new heights. Docurama’s catalog features the performing and visual arts, history, politics, the environment, ethnic and gender interests, and all-time favorites including The Wild Parrots of Telegraph Hill, Andy Goldsworthy: Rivers and Tides and King Corn. Recent titles include the Oscar®-nominated films Gasland, Hell and Back Again and Paradise Lost 3: Purgatory. www.docuramafilms.com
About Cinedigm Entertainment Group
Cinedigm Entertainment Group, a division of Cinedigm Digital Cinema Corpis a state of the art digital distributor of award-winning independent films and alternative content. CEG has released close to 200 independent films and alternative content events over the last few years, with past releases ranging up to 1,000 screens based on content and audience footprint. Films released by Cinedigm include: “Life In A Day.” directed by Kevin McDonald; “The Ward,” directed by John Carpenter; “Smell of Success,” featuring Billy Bob Thornton, Téa Leoni and Ed Helms; Foo Fighters documentary, “Back & Forth,” directed by Oscar® winner James Moll; and Peter Bogdanovich’s “Runnin’ Down A Dream,” with Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers. Current and upcoming CEG films include “No Room For Rockstars,” Parris Patton’s documentary chronicling the Vans Warped Tour; “Like Water,” directed by Pablo Croce; “The Invisible War,” directed by Kirby Dick; “Citadel,” directed by Ciaran Foy; “In Our Nature,” starring John Slattery; and “22 Bullets,” starring Jean Reno and produced by Luc Besson.
Additionally, Cinedigm delivers feature films, TV programs and web originals via digital download, streaming, video-on-demand, Blu-ray, and DVD. The company’s library includes award-winning documentaries from Docurama Films®, next-gen indies from Flatiron Film Company®, including international blockbuster “Elite Squad: The Enemy Within,” and acclaimed independent films and festival picks through partnerships with the Sundance Institute and Tribeca Film. Cinedigm is proud to distribute many Oscar®-nominated films including “Hell and Back Again,” “GasLand,” “Waste Land,” “The Secret of Kells,” “Paradise Lost 3: Purgatory” and “Chico & Rita.” Cinedigm™ and Cinedigm Digital Cinema Corp™ are trademarks of Cinedigm Digital Cinema Corp www.cinedigm.com. [CIDM-G]
For more information, please contact:
Luis Garza; 646-259-4144;
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