Riverside City College faculty members Will Kim and Jian Lee have had a documentary film selected for the Tribeca Film Festival, one of the nation's largest film festivals. Three College alums — Leon Lam, Rafael Mejia, and Frank Meza — served as animation crewmembers on the film.
Funded in 2002, the Tribeca Film Festival runs from April 18-29 and is held in Tribeca, a neighborhood of Manhattan. The Festival showcases a diverse selection of independent films each year and is known to attract over 8,000 film submissions yearly. Jane Rosenthal, a film producer; Robert De Niro, an Academy Award winning actor, producer and director; and Craig Hatkoff, a real estate investor and philanthropist, founded the film festival after the September 11 World Trade Center attack in response to the “consequent loss of vitality in the Tribeca neighborhood.”
Kim, Lee and the three former RCC students worked with Patrick Waldorp, a graduate of UC Berkeley, on Cosmic Debris. The short documentary explores Gabor Csupo, the iconic animator and creator of The Simpsons who is also known for his friendship with legendary musician, Frank Zappa. Kim and Lee served as animation supervisors, while the students served as part of the animation crew.
At the same time, Lee and Kim served as animators on Dreams of Daraa, an up-close portrait of the Syrian refugee crisis. The film was recently selected for the Fledgling Engagement Lab which supports films of storytelling in larger social change efforts. The story is told through the eyes of a brave young mother named Hanadi and her three daughters. When a visiting girl clown from Slovakia, Timea, unexpectedly enters their lives in Jordan’s Zaatari Refugee Camp, Hanadi reveals her heart’s desire—to find her missing husband and return to the life she once knew and loved.
Produced and directed by Reilly Dowd, a graduate of Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service, where she focused her studies on international politics and investigative journalism.