Malala Yousafzai, the youngest-ever Peace Prize laureate who spoke out on behalf of girls’ education in Pakistan and was shot in the forehead by the Taliban, has been making a number of prolific appearances prior to the October 2 opening of the Fox Searchlight documentary that’s she’s a subject of, He Named Me Malala. However, her presence across such shows as Oprah Winfrey’s Super Soul Sunday (set to air October 11), The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Good Morning America and Nightline isn’t just about drawing attention to Oscar-winning director Davis Guggenheim’s documentary, it’s also about Yousafzai’s crusade to ensure that girls and boys aren’t denied a quality 12-year education.
Last Friday, after speaking at the United Nations following Pope Francis, Yousafzai stopped by The Late Show With Stephen Colbert to tell him that she opened a school in Lebanon on her 18th birthday. Her intention: Rather than ask world leaders for their assistance in launching a cause, she wants to show them that she’s already taking big steps. “We need people to come together, not just by asking world leaders, but we need to do something for ourselves. It is at that moment that we choose to continue the campaign or not,” Yousafzai told Colbert. Yousafzai also took time out to have fun with Colbert by showing him her signature card trick.
The Malala fund, which she co-founded with her father Ziauddin Yousafzai, is building schools in Jordan, Pakistan and Lebanon. It is her father’s pronoun that is referred to in the film’s title; Ziauddin raised Malala to have confidence and speak out.
Fox Searchlight acquired worldwide rights sans French-speaking to He Named Me Malala back in March. National Geographic is a partner in the film and is bringing it to remote places in the world where it typically wouldn’t be screened. Participant and Image Nation Abu Dhabi are also partners. In addition, He Named Me Malala is being translated into a number of languages. He Named Me Malala opens Friday in New York at the AMC Lincoln Square and Sunshine Cinemas and in Los Angeles at the Hollywood ArcLight and Landmark Threatre.