Cinedigm has secured the North American rights to Sara Hirsh Bordo’s directorial debut, “A Brave Heart: The Lizzie Velasquez Story.” The documentary premiered at SXSW to great acclaim, winning the Audience Award in its category and receiving multiple standing ovations.
The subject of the doc is of course Lizzie Velasquez. After being born with a rare medical condition that prevents her from being able to gain weight, Velasquez endured intense bullying as a child for looking different from her classmates. When she was 17, Velasquez found a YouTube video identifying her as “The World’s Ugliest Women.” This doc details her inspiring journey to become a motivational speaker and anti-bullying activist.
In an interview with Women and Hollywood, Hirsh Bordo shared what drew her to Velasquez’s story: “Lizzie and I met when she gave a talk at the first TEDxAustinWomen event, which I produced. She was a local hero whose time had arrived. Bullying is a subject that historically yields stories of victims, rarely stories of heroes. The inspiration Lizzie ignites crosses ages, genders and ethnicities and proves that hope has no demographic. My opportunity was to simply provide a wider platform for Lizzie to inspire beyond the boundaries of an 18-minute speech.” Hirsh Bordo is the CEO and Founder of Women Rising, a company dedicated to telling stories about girls and women.
“Rarely have I seen a film that touches an audience in such a primal way,” said Yolanda Macias, Cinedigm’s Executive Vice President of Acquisitions.“We think everyone in the world should see this film and that Lizzie should be extolled for her extraordinary work in human rights activism. In a similar vein to our award-winning projects ‘The Invisible War’ and ‘Girl Rising,’ we could not be more proud to distribute this prestige film.”
“A Brave Heart: The Lizzie Velasquez Story” will have a theatrical run in October 2015.