DocuDay LA takes place annually in celebration of the feature and short documentaries nominated for an Oscar®, with back to back screenings all day. Filmmaker Q&As follow each screening, filmmaker schedule permitting. Watch the most recognized documentaries of the year and meet the nominees!


Saturday, February 8, 2020

Writers Guild Theater
135 S. Doheny Dr, Beverly Hills, CA 90211

Complimentary parking, beer and wine reception will be provided.



Doors Open/Check-In



Hatidze lives with her ailing mother in the mountains of Macedonia, making a living cultivating honey using ancient beekeeping traditions. When an unruly family moves in next door, what at first seems like a balm for her solitude becomes a source of tension as they, too, want to practice beekeeping, while disregarding her sustainable methods. (85 minutes)


Discussion with Directors Tamara Kotevska and Ljubo Stefanov, Cinematographers Samir Ljuma and Fejmi Daut as well as film participant Haditze Muratova; moderated by Jarrett Hill, Vice President of NABJLA.


The Edge of Democracy

An exploration into the truth behind the unraveling of two Brazilian presidencies. Combining access to leaders past and present, including Presidents Dilma Rousseff and Lula da Silva, with accounts of her own family's political and industrial past, director Petra Costa witnesses their rise and fall and the polarized nation that remains. (121 minutes)


Discussion with Director Petra Costa and Producer Joanna Natasegara, moderated by Ella Taylor, LA-based film critic and Staff Writer.


Shorts Program 1: Learning To Skateboard in a Warzone (if you're a girl) & In the Absence

In the Absence: When the passenger ferry MV Sewol sank off the coast of South Korea in 2014, over three hundred people lost their lives, most of them schoolchildren. Years later, the victims’ families and survivors are still demanding justice from national authorities. (29 minutes)

Learning to Skateboard in a Warzone (if you’re a girl): Learning To Skateboard In A Warzone (if you’re a girl) is the story of young Afghan girls learning to read, write—and skateboard—in Kabul. The film follows a class of girls as they progress both in the classroom and the skatepark, navigating not only the challenges of their education but also the challenges of the increasingly unstable world in which they live. (40 minutes)


Discussion with Director Carol Dysinger and Producer Elena Andreicheva of Learning to Skateboard in a Warzone (if you’re a girl)and In the Absence Director Yi Seung-Jun and Producer Gary Byung-Seok Kam; moderated by Tim Grierson, Senior U.S. Critic at Screen International.


Shorts Program 2: Life Overtakes Me / St. Louis Superman / Walk Run Cha-Cha

Life Overtakes Me: Facing deportation, hundreds of refugee children in Sweden have become afflicted with resignation syndrome, withdrawing from the world into a coma-like state as if frozen for months, or even years. Life Overtakes Me brings viewers into the lives of the parents who struggle to care for their sick children. (40 minutes)

St. Louis Superman: Bruce Franks Jr., a Ferguson activist and battle rapper who was elected to the overwhelmingly white and Republican Missouri House of Representatives, must overcome both personal trauma and political obstacles to pass a bill critical for his community. (28 minutes)

Walk Run Cha-Cha: Paul and Millie Cao reunited in California after the Vietnam War. Forty years later, they are rediscovering themselves on the dance floor. (20 minutes)


Discussion with Directors/Producers Kristine Samuelson and John Haptas of Life Overtakes Me, Director/Producers Smriti Mundhra and Sami Khan of St. Louis Superman, and Director Laura Nix and Producer Colette Sandstedt of Walk Run Cha-Cha, moderated by Tim Grierson, Senior U.S. Critic at Screen International.


The Cave

A stirring portrait of courage, resilience and female solidarity, delivers an unflinching look at the Syrian war and some of its most unlikely heroes. For besieged civilians, hope and safety lie inside the subterranean hospital known as the Cave, where pediatrician and managing physician Dr. Amani Ballour and her colleagues work as equals alongside their male counterparts. (105 minutes)


Discussion with Director Feras Fayyad, Producers Sigrid Dyekjær and Kirstine Barfod, as well as film participant Dr. Amani Ballour; moderated by IDA Executive Director Simon Kilmurry.


For Sama

For Sama is an intimate and epic journey into the female experience of war. A love letter from a young mother to her daughter, the film tells the story of Waad al-Kateab’s life through five years of the uprising in Aleppo, Syria as she falls in love, gets married and gives birth to Sama, while cataclysmic conflict rises around her. (95 minutes)


Discussion with Directors Waad al-Kateab and Edward Watts, Film Participant Hamza al-Kateab; moderated by Claudia Puig, President of LA Film Critics Association.


American Factory

In post-industrial Ohio, a Chinese billionaire opens a new factory in the husk of an abandoned General Motors plant, hiring two thousand blue-collar Americans. Early days of hope and optimism give way to setbacks as high-tech China clashes with working-class America. (110 minutes)


Pre-screening discussion with Directors Julia Reichert and Steven Bognar, moderated by IDA Executive Director Simon Kilmurry.