Imagine being trapped inside a Disney movie and having to learn about life mostly from animated characters dancing across a screen of color. A fantasy? A nightmare? Life, Animated is the real-life story of Owen Suskind, the son of the Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Ron Suskind and his wife, Cornelia.
An autistic boy who couldn’t speak for years, Owen memorized dozens of Disney movies, turned them into a language to express love and loss, kinship, brotherhood. The family was forced to become animated characters, communicating with him in Disney dialogue and song. Until they all emerge, together, revealing how, in darkness, we all literally need stories to survive.
Documentary Feature, directed and produced by Roger Ross Williams. Premiered at Sundance 2016. Currently nominated for an Academy Award® for Best Documentary Feature. Life, Animated website
Alternately humorous and shocking, Blackface follows African American filmmaker Roger Ross Williams as he goes on a journey to understand why the notoriously liberal Dutch feel compelled to dress in blackface during the annual holiday tradition of Sinterklaas.
How can a country that for decades boasted about their own multi-cultural society and liberal attitude, be so disconnected from their ethnic minorities, oblivious of it’s own colonial past, and so unwilling to see beyond it’s own outdated traditions?
Documentary short, made for CNN Films. See it here.
Roger Ross Williams’ first feature-length documentary, God Loves Uganda, is a powerful exploration of the evangelical campaign to change African culture with values imported from America’s Christian Right.
The film follows American and Ugandan religious leaders fighting “sexual immorality” and missionaries trying to convince Ugandans to follow Biblical law.
God Loves Uganda premiered at the Sundance Film Festival on January 18th, 2013 and has screened at over 60 American and international film festivals, winning numerous awards.
God Loves Uganda’s website
Roger Ross Williams wrote, produced and directed the 2010 Academy Award® short film
winner, Music by Prudence. Music by Prudence tells this self-empowering story of Prudence Mabhena. Overcoming seemingly insurmountable odds, Prudence, together with her band, conveys to the world that ‘disability does not mean inability.’ Her inspiring and irreverent message of hope has received an amazing response from press and audiences across the world, and has won the 2010 Academy Award® for Best Documentary Short as well as several other awards.
Music by Prudence’s website