EXCLUSIVE: Rosario Dawson and Lana Parrilla are boarding the upcoming SXSW Linda Goldstein Knowlton directed documentary Split At The Root, as EPs.
The pic is schedule to play in the Austin, TX festival’s Documentary Spotlight section.
Split at the Root follows the emotional journey of mothers separated from their children at the U.S. border and the grassroots initiative that, against all odds, reunites those families. When a Guatemalan mother seeking asylum was separated from her kids under the Zero Tolerance Policy, a Facebook post by a mom in Queens coalesced into a movement as thousands of like-minded women across the U.S. refused to stand by quietly. Immigrant Families Together was born – a rapid response group committed to doing what the government couldn’t – or wouldn’t do: reunite parents with their children separated by the Zero Tolerance Policy.
Producers for Split at the Root include Emmy Award-nominated writer/producer Marti Noxon of Tiny Pyro Productions, Noxon’s President of Production Maria Grasso, Miranda Bailey of Cold Iron Pictures.
Dawson has produced fiction and nonfiction alike ranging from projects like This Is Not A War Story, nominated for The John Cassavetes Spirit Award, the award-winning documentary The Need To Grow which she also has narrated, and produced two projects for Free Speech Television, The Assembly as well as Telethon for America 2020, both of which she co-hosted. Behind the cameras, Dawson is highly active in political, social and environmental causes and has been involved with many social justice organizations including Amnesty International, Voto Latino, Save The Children, Doctors Without Borders and RESPECT! (to prevent domestic violence) to name a few.
“When it comes to immigration policy in this country, it is more than just a political crisis—we’re suffering a crisis of our very humanity. And one way to change the debate in Washington is by changing the language we use and the stories we produce such as Split the Root, opening the lens wider so people get the full picture. By having those who have come to the US to seek asylum front-and-center in this film and showing how every person can make a true difference to create change is why I wanted to join the producing team of this film” said Dawson.
Noxon added, “From the moment I heard the story of mothers on this side of the border helping mothers and children on the other side, I was compelled to know more. I couldn’t imagine any parent who knows the wrenching pain of being separated from their children who wouldn’t relate. And I had total confidence that Linda Goldstein Knowlton and the whole team would capture the beauty, despair, and hope of these women’s journey. I’m proud to be part of it and am so pleased to have Rosario join the team in amplifying these women’s voices and helping to shine a light on the compassionate Americans who supported them along the way.”
“My intention with this film was to tell an intimate, personal story of families separated by the Zero Tolerance policy, told by powerful women from both sides of the border. I couldn’t be more grateful to Marti and Rosario for helping to make this film a reality and bring the spotlight back onto the ongoing experiences of these families” said Goldstein Knowlton.
Noxon’s recent credits include HBO limited series Sharp Objects, AMC’s Dietland and the acclaimed first season of Lifetime series UnREAL, a recipient of the prestigious Peabody Award. Her additional credits include Girlfriends’ Guide to Divorce, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Mad Men, Grey’s Anatomy and Private Practice, and she wrote and directed the Netflix film To the Bone, inspired by her own battle with eating disorders.
Goldstein Knowlton is an Emmy-nominated filmmaker, working in documentary, scripted feature films, and television. Her award-winning We Are The Radical Monarchs, premiered at SXSW in 2019 and was released on PBS in 2020. She produced the award-winning Whale Rider and The Shipping News and began directing documentaries in 2003. For her directorial debut, she co-directed The World According to Sesame Street, which debuted at the 2006 Sundance Film Festival and aired on PBS. Goldstein Knowlton directed and produced one of the six, Emmy-nominated documentaries for the PBS MAKERS: Women Who Make America series, and produced the documentary Code Black, the basis for the CBS one-hour drama.
Parrilla’s TV credits include Once Upon a Time, Spin City, Swingtown, Boomtown, Windfall and 24. For her turn as The Evil Queen/Regina Mills in Once Upon a Time, she won a Teen Choice Award for Choice Sci-Fi/Fantasy TV Actress, an ALMA Award for Outstanding Actress in a Drama Series and a nomination for Best Supporting Actress on Television from the 38th Saturn Awards.
Producer, actor, and director Bailey recently premiered her film God’s Country, starring Thandiwe Newton at this year’s Sundance Film Festival to critical acclaim. She has produced over 20 films, among them the Oscar-nominated The Squid And The Whale and the Spirit Award-winning The Diary Of A Teenage Girl, as well as James Gunn’s Super, the Sundance hit Swiss Army Man, the critically acclaimed Norman, and the indie hit Don’t Think Twice.
Other EPs on Split at the Root include Zak Kilberg founder of Social Construct, a bold production company dedicated to curating a range of socially relevant and impactful media projects. Amanda Marshall and Jason Beck also of Cold Iron Pictures.
Split At The Root is represented by ICM Partners, CAA Media Finance and UTA Independent Film.
Dawson is represented by CAA and Untitled Entertainment, Parrilla is represented by The Gersh Agency and Untitled Entertainment; Noxon is represented by WME, Goldstein Knowlton is represented by Chris Tricarico, Bailey is represented by ICM and Echo Lake Entertainment.
Must Read Stories
Subscribe to Deadline Breaking News Alerts and keep your inbox happy.