Sansón and Me

Film Synopsis

During his day job as a Spanish criminal interpreter in a small town in California, filmmaker Rodrigo Reyes met a young man named Sansón, an undocumented Mexican immigrant who was sentenced to life in prison without parole. With no permission to interview him, Sansón and Reyes worked together over a decade, using hundreds of letters as inspiration for recreations of Sansón’s childhood—featuring members of Sansón’s own family. The result is a vibrant portrait of a friendship navigating immigration and the depths of the criminal justice system, and pushing the boundaries of cinematic imagination to rescue a young migrant’s story from oblivion. 

Screenings

Nov 20, 2022

Presented by Zanate Festival de cine documental mexicano

Colima, Mexico

Nov 18, 2022

Presented by Bertha DocHouse

London, United Kingdom

Nov 7, 2022

Presented by the International Documentary Association

Los Angeles, CA

Nov 5, 2022

Presented by San Francisco International Film Festival

San Francisco, CA

Oct 29, 2022

Presented by Firehouse

New York, NY

Oct 23, 2022

Presented by Festival Internacional de Cine de Morelia

Morelia, Mexico

Oct 21, 2022

Presented by DocsMX

Mexico City, Mexico

Jun 26, 2022

International Premiere at Sheffield Doc/Fest

Sheffield, United Kingdom

Jun 12, 2022

World Premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival

New York, NY

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Credits

Directed and Produced by Rodrigo Reyes
Produced by Su Kim
Story by Sansón Noe Andrade, Rodrigo Reyes, Su Kim
Executive Producers: Inti Cordera, Sally Jo Fifer, Lois Vossen, Sandie Pedlow
Director of Photography: Alejandro Mejía, AMC
Edited by Andrea Chignoli, Daniel E. Chávez Ontiveros
Story Consultant: Doris Baizley
Original Music by Jacobo Lieberman
Supervising Sound Editor & Re-recording Mixer: Ruy Garcia

CAST
Sansón – Adult played by Gerardo Reyes
Sansón – Child played by Antonio González Andrade
Sansón – Baby played by Miguel Andrade

Impact Campaign

Sansón and Me is a beautiful cinematic meditation on the systemic failures that drive the incarceration of young people, and an ideal springboard for understanding the extreme sentencing that disproportionately impacts BIPOC youth. Critically, the film illuminates a story greatly underrepresented in mainstream media: the devastating impact of incarceration on Latinx and immigrant communities in the United States.

Sansón’s creative participation and collaboration in the film is an innovative and inspiring model of narrative power, authorship and agency, raising essential questions about ethics and consent in storytelling about communities impacted by incarceration—whose stories get told by whom, how, and why? The film also interrogates the space of the cinema itself. Drawing parallels to the space of the prison, we are asked to confront our own limited perspective, empathy, and action as bystanders and audience members.

Represent Justice is partnering with Rodrigo Reyes, Su Kim, and Sansón Noe Andrade to launch an impact campaign for Sansón and Me. We will work to honor Sansón’s storytelling by sharing the film with others who are currently incarcerated, and with young people in communities impacted by mass incarceration. We will also embed the film in advocacy efforts to address the arrest-to-deportation pipeline, and the extreme sentencing of young people.