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Arizona’s 20th Anniversary of the ADA Film Festival


Award-winning documentary filmmaker Steven C. Barber will premier “Unbeaten” at 20th Anniversary of the ADA Film Festival

The two-day ADA Film Festival will commemorate the 20th Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act by highlighting favorite films, featuring a variety of disability issues that reflect the intent and progress of the disability rights movement.

Thursday, July 15, 2010 – 2 pm to 7 pm
Friday, July 16, 2010 – 1 pm – 2 pm (Replay of ADA Signing and Reflections)
Friday, July 16, 2010 – 2 pm to 8 pm

Award-winning documentary filmmaker Steven C. Barber will unviel his 2nd film, “Unbeaten,” the inspirational story that chronicles the exploits of 31 paraplegics for six days, as they make their way in wheelchairs and hand cycles in what is known as the toughest road race in the world, “Sadler’s Alaska Challenge.” The course winds 267 miles though the mountain passes of Denali National Park between Fairbanks and Anchorage.

The film takes us into the 55 mile-per-day grind of three wheelchair racers, Chris Kohler, Geoffrey Erickson and Edwin Figueroa. The story transitions midway through as the filmmaker follows the elite racers of the U.S. Paralympics squad, Oz Sanchez (current Paralympic gold medalist and fastest man in the world in a hand cycle) and Alejandro Albor (Paralympic silver medalist) in their quest to medal at the 2008 Beijing Paralympics.

For many of the participants, it is a journey of self-discovery, of strength and a demonstration of will and determination. It is also a message to countless individuals with physical limitations worldwide. “Unbeaten” is a monumental homage to heroism and a message of hope to countless disabled individuals worldwide.

Vanilla Fire Productions has teamed up with Polaris Media Group, an international entrepreneurial skills training company, to raise the profile of disabled athletes and disabled persons worldwide. Shane Krider, CEO and founder of Polaris, served as Executive Producer for “Unbeaten” and Greg Strom, Head of Worldwide Media for Polaris, was a Producer for the film.
The three-year odyssey to finish the film came with the generosity of some high profile individuals, including Steve Forbes, Eli Broad, Boone Pickens, Cher, Billy Jean King, Tony Hawk, Clint Black, Paula and Sumner Redstone, Larry Hagman, Clint Black, Pamela Anderson and Steve Jobs. Partial proceeds from this film will be contributed to the Challenged Athletes Foundation.

What: ADA Film Festival commemorating the 20th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Ceremony to honor individuals personifying the “unbeaten spirit”.

Premiering of “Unbeaten” followed by Q&A with film Director Steven Barber

When/Time: Thursday, July 15 (2pm – 7pm) and Friday, July 16 (2pm – 8pm)

Cost: No Charge!!!

Transportation: Please contact David Carey at 602-443-0723 before Tuesday, July 13 5 p.m.

RSVP: Please call David Carey at 602-443-0723 and/or register via facebook.

Refreshments: Popcorn, nachos, drinks, cookies will be provided free of charge.

Accommodations: Please contact David Carey before Tuesday, July 13. Films will be captioned and interpreters will be provided for discussion.

Location: Disability Empowerment Center (DEC), 5025 E. Washington, Phoenix, AZ 85034 – Nina Mason Pulliam Conference Center – First Floor

Other ADA Events: Please  contact David Carey at (602)443-0723 or davidc@abil.org.

Film Festival Schedule and Film Descriptions

Thursday, July 15, 2010
2:00 pm Welcome

2:05 pm ADA Signing Ceremony – July 26, 1990 – This video documents
the speech given by President George H. W. Bush when he signed
the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) into law on July 26, 1990. In the video, President Bush speaks to a huge audience of activists, Congressional supporters, people with disabilities, and their families and friends gathered on the south lawn of the White House.
Running Time: 22 min

2:30 pm Reflections of a Promise – A history of the disability rights movement, the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act, and events over the past 20 years with its passage. This nationally released documentary will feature a compilation of historical images and footage, interviews with people instrumental in the disability rights movement and the passage of the ADA, and people with disabilities describing their perspectives on how the ADA has affected their lives.
Running Time: 22 min

3:00 pm Deaf President Now! – Student strikes at Gallaudet University starting March 6, 1988 revolutionized the perception and education of Deaf culture. Deaf students were outraged at the selection of another hearing president, Elisabeth Zinser, after a long line of university presidents who were not deaf. Alumni, faculty, staff, and students demanded that the next president of the university be deaf. After a week of protest and activism, Zinser resigned and was replaced by I. King Jordan. This movement became known as Deaf President Now.
Running Time: 28 min

3:30 pm Audience Discussion 20 min.

3:50 pm Break 10 min.

4:10 pm Dear Wheelchair Maker – Gene Rodgers describes the type of wheelchair he needs using amazing videos.
Running Time: 5 min

4:15 pm Audience Discussion 10 min.

4:25 pm Behind the Scenes “Invisible Voices”
Running Time: 16 min

4:45 pm Invisible Voices
Seven people gather on a stage. Three use wheelchairs. One is accompanied by her service dog. One man, who speaks using sign language, is accompanied by an actor who will voice what the man signs. One man doesn’t appear to have a disability at all.

This is the cast of Invisible Voices: Six individuals living with various disabilities: six voices, each with its own unique perspective. Over the next 96 minutes, these energetic voices will weave a tapestry of a story. Some of the stories will be sad, but not most of them. For the most part, these voices are happy, confident, challenging. The perfect guides to what is-for most of us-a foreign land.

The Invisible Voices DVD captures this compelling stage show, providing a window into the complex worlds of six individuals who have adapted to and thrived with their disabilities. This is a compelling presentation delivered by those who know, firsthand, what it means to be one of the 54 million Americans living with a serious disability today.
Running Time: 96 min

6:15 pm Break 10 min.

6:25 pm Panel Discussion 30 min.

6:55 pm Closing Remarks 5 min.


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Accessing Arizona is primarily designed for people who are looking for wheelchair accessible events, locations and activities. If you have paralysis (paraplegic or quadriplegic), Muscular Dystrophy, Spinal Bifida, or if you are an amputee, Accessing Arizona has information about an active lifestyle.
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