USF Presents: 11th Annual Human Rights Film Festival

SAN FRANCISCO (March 13, 2013)

The University of San Francisco (USF) is proud to present its 11th Annual Human Rights Film Festival, screening from Thursday, April 4 through Saturday, April 6, each day in USF's Presentation Theater (2350 Turk Boulevard, at Masonic). The three-day festival promotes awareness and discussion of global human rights issues, and is free and open to the public. A detailed schedule and film descriptions can be found here.

"One of the festival's main contributions is its coverage of a broad spectrum of human rights issues, and its global scope," said Susana Kaiser, associate professor of Media Studies and Latin American Studies, and the festival's co-founder and co-organizer since 2003. "This is also the reason for its popularity."

The featured films this year will address human rights issues in near and distant locations from China, Israel, Palestine, South Africa, Latin America, Kashmir, the Marshall Islands, and the United States. Four to five films will be screened every day. The subjects highlighted in the films include child labor, human experimentation, violence against women, access to housing and land, occupation, refugees, transgender health care, and drug trafficking related violence.

As an educational event, each film is followed by a question and answer session led by an expert on the topic. These experts range from film directors to scholars, and include journalists and community activists. "We aim to create a space to not only view the films, but also discuss the issues they address and, most importantly, brainstorm ways to fight the abuses we witness," said USF's Mary Zweifel, the festival's co-organizer.

This year's festival also includes the screening of two Oscar-nominated films. The first, a Sundance Film Festival winner, "5 Broken Cameras," a 2011 feature by Emad Burnat and Guy Davidi, documents the firsthand account of non-violent resistance in Bil'in, a West Bank village threatened by encroaching Israeli settlements. "The Invisible War," directed by Kirby Dick, a two-time Oscar nominee, is an investigation into underreported rape within the United States military. Some films introduce first time directors, including filmmaker Alison Klayman of "Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry," and Adam Jonas Horowitz, director of "Nuclear Savage: The Islands of Secret Project 4.1."

The first screenings will begin each day at noon, starting with USF student produced shorts on April 4. For the first time in the festival's history, USF alumni shorts will be included on April 5, and Bay Area student shorts will be screened on April 6. Each student screening will be followed by a question and answer session with the filmmakers.

Screening times and descriptions of the selected films are available here. For more information on USF's 11th Annual Human Rights Film Festival, please contact Susana Kaiser at (415) 422-5141 or Mary Zweifel at (415) 422-5122. For media inquiries or to request an interview, please contact Anne-Marie Devine at (415) 422-2697 or

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