Up On The Roof with 3Below: Curated with Purpose
When we first set out to try to produce anything under the header of "entertainment" during the pandemic, we figured all anyone would want is fluff; something to take our minds off all the negative stuff. But, as the months went by and the daily news shined a light on the ongoing social injustices that too many in our community face, we wanted to produce programming that makes a difference. And then we realized, we can and need to do both.
"Incumbent upon us as producers is the responsibility to present programs that speak to our entire community and that entertain as well as educate. Never has this ethic been more important than today when many members of our community are seeking representation in art and others in our community are seeking enlightenment so they can be better armed in the fight against social inequality. We are framing our programming choices with these concerns in mind and hope our audience will embrace this program that celebrates and showcases community." - Scott & Shannon Guggenheim, Producers
Movies and music are not going to change how injustice is understood or experienced but experiencing entertainment does not happen in a vacuum, and the right film or song presented in the right environment has the capability of completely changing one’s worldview. A film about race or immigration or gender or sexuality or just about anything else can make the difference in how our society acts. A shared experience that promotes joy as well as thoughtfulness, that highlights injustice and at the same time inspires us to do better, will provide every viewer with a new perspective on how to think and talk about hard subjects. And if you're entertained by outstanding performances in all areas of visual and performing arts along the way, even better.
Social justice is at the forefront of the American consciousness; just look at the #MeToo, #TimesUp, March For Our Lives, Black Lives Matter movements that have sprung up in recent years. There have always been social issues that need our urgent attention, but only recently have many societal ills become seemingly omnipresent. While it may seem bleak to constantly hear about problems within society, it’s also a chance to become more aware of your world and how you can help make it better.
As long as there have been smart, empathetic filmmakers, there have been great social justice movies. They aren’t all completely serious; many have found lighter, sometimes even comical ways to address serious issues. Some have won Oscars, some were unfairly ignored, most are fascinating and necessary looks at the myriad problems within our society. Knowledge is power and these movies have plenty of it.
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