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Telling the stories of children of immigrants in New York & Berlin who challenge boundaries & reimagine belonging.
Telling the stories of children of immigrants in New York & Berlin who challenge boundaries & reimagine belonging.
274 backers pledged $25,657 to help bring this project to life.

About this project

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$25,657

274

THE FILM

Job-snatcher. Terrorist. Illegal. Foreign. Exotic. These taunts and sentiments are familiar to the five children of immigrants in New York and Berlin featured in the 90-minute documentary film with WINGS and ROOTS. 

Immigrant rights activist & film protagonist, Tania, in New York (photo: Sophia Wallace)
Immigrant rights activist & film protagonist, Tania, in New York (photo: Sophia Wallace)

Miman, Sonny, Akim, Tania, and Derya represent voices all but absent from the mainstream media in Europe and the United States. These young adults, whose parents hail from Bolivia, India, Turkey, Macedonia, and Vietnam, are often considered outsiders in both mainstream society and “their own” communities. Grappling with the pressure to assimilate on one hand, and the pressure to “preserve” their cultures on the other, they forge new paths through their art and activism as they take the next major steps in their lives: career, marriage, children, and pursuing the right to citizenship. 

While they have very different backgrounds, these young people face common challenges and offer their own compelling visions of belonging--of what it means to be an American and a German. Pushing against expectations, their stories echo the underrepresented voices of millions of young people on both sides of the Atlantic.

Musician & film protagonist, Sonny, in New York
Musician & film protagonist, Sonny, in New York

Set in two migration cities on different continents, with WINGS and ROOTS uses an unprecedented comparative lens that breathes fresh life into an urgent social issue so often mired by clichés.

THE IMPACT

In the US, we often think of immigration as a uniquely American issue. Rarely do we see the overlapping experiences of immigrant communities around the world. The stories in with WINGS and ROOTS force us to recognize the interconnectedness of our struggles and reimagine belonging beyond national borders.

Street artist & film protagonist, Akim, in Berlin (photo: Sophia Wallace)
Street artist & film protagonist, Akim, in Berlin (photo: Sophia Wallace)

Using short and long form documentary films, educational workshops, and an interactive website, with WINGS and ROOTS aims to facilitate conversations in Europe and North America about the intersection of immigration, racism, and belonging. To date, we have already released two award-winning short films, Article of Faith and Where are you from from?, while the feature length film and interactive website are in progress. The short films have screened at nearly 100 events in Europe and North America, often accompanied by workshops on issues like bias-based bullying in schools, immigrant rights, and post-9/11 racism.

Given the political climate of record deportations, growing Islamophobic backlash, and a real opportunity for immigration reform in US, the time for this film to be completed and distributed is now.

Roma advocate & film protagonist, Miman, in Berlin
Roma advocate & film protagonist, Miman, in Berlin

THE ASK

Filming is completely done for the project, and we now are seeking your support to help cover post-production costs with the goal of raising $23,000. This money will be used in combination with other funds being raised to cover the following post-production costs:  

  • Editor: 3 months, $15,000
  • Composer and music licensing: $5,000
  • Graphics and animation: $2,000
  • Subtitling: $1,000

This project is over seven years in the making and has grown tremendously over the last years into a multiplatform collaborative project with a team of 20 volunteers in Germany and the US. With your support, a rough cut of with WINGS and ROOTS can be completed by the end of this year and the final film released in Spring 2014.

Thank you for your support!

Turkish-German community leader & protagonist, Derya, in Berlin.
Turkish-German community leader & protagonist, Derya, in Berlin.
with WINGS and ROOTS rooftop party in Brooklyn (photo: Luis Luna)
with WINGS and ROOTS rooftop party in Brooklyn (photo: Luis Luna)

THE TRAILER

THE TEAM

The project is undertaken by a young, collaborative team who draw on our own experience as part of immigrant communities. We are filmmakers, educators, designers, activists, and programmers, working together to create a project which is beautiful and has an impact.

Risks and challenges

As a multi-language, international project created by a young filmmaking team, we know that completing this film is no small task. That said, we have undertaken this work consistently and effectively over a number of years with very few resources. We have completed production and already begun community engagement work. We are nearing the finish line, and have full confidence in our ability to finish this film with your support.

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    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    with WINGS and ROOTS digital wallpaper and a thank you on our Facebook page.

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    Digital download of the song "Alien Native" by Ethiopian American hip hop artist Gabriel Teodros that features Sonny Singh, one of the film's protagonists, on trumpet and vocals. http://gabrielteodros.com

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    An exclusive mixtape by Sierra Leonean-American electronic musician & DJ, Chief Boima in his unique Neo Electric African Diasporic style http://chiefboima.com/

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    Get the film in your home! A digital download of "with WINGS and ROOTS" upon the film's distribution.

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    Pledge $40 or more About $40

    An exclusive "REIMAGINE BELONGING" tote bag + all previous rewards.

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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    A DVD one of Christina Antonakos-Wallace's short films, "Article of Faith" or "Where are you from from?" + all previous rewards.

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    Pledge $75 or more About $75

    A DVD of the completed "with WINGS and ROOTS" with exclusive bonus material, upon film's distribution + all previous rewards.

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    Your name listed in our "Special Thanks" section in the end credits of the film + all earlier rewards

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    Pledge $150 or more About $150

    Homemade dessert of your choice baked by Sonny Singh. If you live outside of NYC, your choice of cookies (because mailing ice cream is a bad idea) + all previous rewards.

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    Pledge $200 or more About $200

    Celebrate the film's completion at a special sneak preview screening and meal with the team & closest supporters. Share a decadent dinner cooked by the director and dessert by our very own Sonny Singh + all previous rewards excluding dessert (Travel costs not included).

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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    A screening and workshop in your classroom or organization with a member of the team in NYC (or via video chat in other locations) + all previous rewards excluding dessert.

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    Pledge $750 or more About $750

    Be there for the big event! 2 VIP tickets to US premier of with WINGS and ROOTS (airfare not included) + all previous rewards excluding dessert.

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    Associate Producer credit in the film + all previous rewards!

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    Executive Producer credit in the film & our eternal gratitude!

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Funding period

- (40 days)