‘Beachhead’ is a documentary film that explores the American dreams of Brazilians.
The current pandemic has exposed the fundamental, systemic inequities of the U.S. economy and society at large. The media has sharpened their focus on these disparities with valuable statistics—Latinx are reported to have the highest rates of infections—yet the specific stories of the most vulnerable, undocumented essential workers, are still not being told.
‘Beachhead’ is born out of love for my family and community. The majority of my family members are undocumented and living in states with some of the highest rates of infections in the world. While I started thinking about this documentary in 2018, it has taken priority given the destructive effects of this pandemic on im/migrant communities.
Using oral histories, archival footage, and visual storytelling ‘Beachhead’ will explore what makes the American dreams of Brazilians unique—and by doing so, amplify the voices and shed light on the stories of a largely undocumented community.
In the early 90’s, following two decades of military rule, approximately 1.4 million young people left Brazil for the first time marking the greatest period of Brazilian migration to the United States. My father was among them. Headed for the American East Coast, he became a Beachhead, a term used by immigration scholars to describe people who establish a foothold in a small area and create a network of others like them to follow.
In 2007, the Brazilian Ministry of Foreign Affairs estimated that 1.2 million Brazilians live in the United States, however, the American Community Survey accounted for only 346,000. This massive discrepancy is largely attributed to the undocumented status of an estimated 70% of Brazilians living in the U.S. In 2019 Brazilians made up a quarter of the most apprehended migrant population along the U.S-Mexico border—the stories of this population are often left out of conversations about migration.
Due to the sensitivity of the subject matter, I felt that ‘Beachhead’ should be funded by individuals who believe in, and understand its importance; rather than a brand partnership or organization.
Your support for ‘Beachhead’ will help fund the equipment, production, sound, and licensing costs required to create the documentary—and most importantly—will allow me to compensate those featured in the film.