Wednesday, August 1, 2007

'Trespassing,' censored at Sundance, screening in Santa Barbara

"Trespassing," the most important film to ever be rejected by the Sundance Film Festival, screening in Santa Barbara

by Brenda Norrell

SANTA BARBARA -- "Trespassing," the film that exposes how the nuclear industry has targeted American Indian communities in the Southwest will be screened at the Think Outside the Bomb National Conference on Saturday, Aug. 18.
After "Trespassing," was rejected and censored at Sundance Film Festival, and many of the world's leading avant-garde film festivals, it went on to win awards around the world. From the Tucson International Film Festival and festivals in Spain and Oaxaca, Mexico, fearless film festival organizers awarded it as a human rights' treasure.
The film features the struggles to protect Indian lands from nuclear testing and wasted dumps, including the Colorado Indian River Tribes, Mojave and Western Shoshone.
The film's message is also a lasting tribute to the life long struggle for reverence in defense of the land of Western Shoshone spiritual leader Corbin Harney, who recently passed to the Spirit World.
"Trespassing," reveals how the American Indian Movement, California residents and environmentalists worked with the Mohave and Colorado River Indian Tribes' members to halt the proposed nuclear dump at Ward Valley. It also documents the Western Shoshone's opposition to the nuclear annihilation of their territory.
Venue for Santa Monica:
Discussion with film director Carlos DeMenezes, film star Steve Lopez of the Fort Mojave Nation, and Shundahai Network co-founder Julia Moon Sparrow.
Where: UC Santa Barbara, Theatre & Dance 1701 [click here for campus map:] Starting Time: 8 p.m.
Over nine years in the making, "Trespassing" is a feature-length documentary film that poetically examines our fight for survival. By focusing on the battle around nuclear storage in the United States, the film carefully unpacks a deadly controversy around land rights, uranium mining, nuclear testing and the disposal of nuclear waste.
Filmed in and around Native American sacred sites in Nevada’s Yucca Mountain, Four-Corners and California’s Mojave Desert, "Trespassing" captures the breathtaking beauty of the natural environment, while documenting the actions of indigenous people and others as they risk relocation, eviction and arrest to prevent further desecration of these lands, the air and the water by nuclear waste.
In revisiting the consequences of U.S. nuclear policy, "Trespassing" reveals a common thread in the lives of its protagonists, demonstrating how the actions of the past resonate in the present. The film introduces a range of perspectives, including Stewart L. Udall (former Secretary of the Interior under Kennedy and Johnson), Corbin Harney (Western Shoshone spiritual leader), Steve Lopez (Fort Mojave Indian and Coordinator for the Native Nations Alliance), Anthony Guarisco (Director, Alliance of Atomic Veterans) and Dorothy Purley (Laguna Indian and former uranium miner). Each story adds a layer of humanity to this evocative meditation on the ability of a war culture to bring itself to the brink of annihilation while simultaneously producing "gatekeepers" to combat that annihilation."Trespassing" offers an in depth and provocative examination of historical survival and struggle designed to impact the present generation and alter a deadly course of action.
To view the trailer, visit
The film screening is a part of the Think Outside the Bomb national conference which takes place from August 16-19 at UCSB. Think Outside the Bomb is a national network of activists who come together based on a common interest in nuclear abolition. For more information, including regarding how to participate in the entire conference, visit
Contact Will Parrish or Katie Murray, Nuclear Age Peace Foundation - – (805) 965-3443. Or visit,, or
FREE, with suggested $10 donation.
- Carlos DeMenezes took ten years to make Trespassing, his first feature-length documentary, winner of the Best Documentary Feature award at the 2005 Boston International Film Festival, Best Documentary at the 8th Festival Internacional de Cine y Video de los Pueblos Indigenas held in Oaxaca, Mexico in 2006, and over 10 other documentary film awards. He studied film production at University of California Los Angeles Extension and trained at the Macunaima Theatre School in Sao Paulo, Brazil. He was born in Sao Paulo, Brazil, and lives in Los Angeles, California.
- Steve Lopez is coordinator of the Native Nations Alliance and was a leader of the historic grassroots campaign that defeated the proposed Ward Valley, California nuclear waste dump (
- Julia Moon Sparrow is co-founder and a former staff member of the Shundahai Network, dedicated to “breaking the nuclear chain”. Shundahai Network was founded in 1994 at the request of the internationally revered Western Shoshone activist Corbin Harney, who passed away this past July 10th. The organization has been at the forefront of resistance to nuclear colonialism, nuclear weapons testing, the Yucca Mountain nuclear waste dump, and a variety of other struggles. Shundahai is a Western Shoshone (Newe) word meaning “peace and harmony with all creation.”

Will Parrish
Youth Empowerment Director
Nuclear Age Peace Foundation
PMB 121, 1187 Coast Village Road, Suite 1
Santa Barbara, CA 93108
Phone: (805) 965-3443; Fax: (805) 568-0466;;

Photos: Scene from Trespassing; Corbin Harney; Western Shoshone territory, now known as Nevada, scarred by the annihilation of bombs and nuclear testing/Courtesy photos

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