Produced by Dan Hunt, MFA, Assistant Professor of Communication and Media Arts, and award-winning filmmaker Joy E. Reed, Little Miss Westie follows the lives of two transgender siblings, Luca and Ren, as they navigate through a challenging social environment. The documentary will make its national premiere in tandem with Pride Month on June 16, 2020 at 8:00 pm as a part of America ReFramed on the PBS WORLD Channel.
“I’m thrilled that the film was curated as part of the award-winning series America Reframed and scheduled to premiere during Pride Month, a time when LGBTQ+ folks and our allies not only celebrate, but reflect on and assess our progress,” says Professor Hunt. “Audiences have so many choices now for content, so having Little Miss Westie premiere on PBS, an established brand that celebrates diversity, is very exciting. Given the national broadcast brand coupled with Pride, I hope our documentary will reach the broadest audience possible, especially since it is free for broadcast and streaming.”
Originally debuting at DOC NYC in November 2018, Little Miss Westie also premiered internationally at London’s LGBTQ+ Film Festival. The film has made rounds within higher education, being distributed to libraries and schools by Passion River Films and playing for audiences at Vassar College and MMC.
For filmmakers and Marymount Manhattan students within the Department of Communication and Media Arts interested in producing documentaries, Professor Hunt advises that the best first step is to pick up a camera or a phone and start shooting. “If you are passionate about an issue or a story, start filming and be heard,” he says. “Your voice matters, and it will be authentic and nuanced storytelling.”