The XX Santiago Álvarez Documentary Film Festival in Santiago de Cuba from March 3 - 8, 2023 would be dedicated to the Independent Documentary of the United States (each year the festival is dedicated to the filmmakers of a specific country)! What? A Cuban film festival honoring the filmmakers from the very country that has tried to strangle the island nation with a devastating economic blockade for the last 64 years? What a great idea, I thought.
In 2020 Detroit 48202 won the Jury Award at the Festival Internacional de Documentales Santiago Álvarez in Memoriam in Santiago de Cuba.
Subsequently, the festival directors decided to dedicate the following festival to "The Independent Documentary of the United States," and asked me to curate a special showcase of US documentaries.
“Detroit 48202 is a powerfully crafted and visually compelling homage to black life, resilience, and the project of world-making from the optic and lived experience of a laboring Detroit mailman,” said Professor Michael T. Martin, former Director of The Black Film Center and Archive, after seeing Detroit 48202 at the InLight Film Festival at Indiana University in April 2022.
We received tremendous reviews after the encore broadcast of DETROIT 48202 on PBS/World Channel's America Reframed Series on Jan. 11. One viewer tweeted: “Best movie about Detroit I ever saw.” Another said: wrote: “…my heart is full, my spirit is moved, I’m feeling pangs of righteous anger.” The person continued: “I’ve downloaded the incredible, thorough Teachers’ Guide.