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K-State Today

April 10, 2019

'Free CeCe!' documentary screening and discussion

Submitted by Sam Sharpe

A screening of the 2016 documentary "Free CeCe!" will take place from 4-6:30 p.m. Friday, April 12, in 13 Leasure Hall. A discussion will follow. 

The screening is sponsored by Gender Collective, the LGBTQ*FSA, and the gender, women, and sexuality studies department. Contact sharpes@k-state.edu with questions about the event.

Film synopsis: According to the National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs, more than 50% of anti-LGBTQ homicide victims are transgender women of color. 

On her way to the store with a group of friends, Chrishaun Reed "CeCe" McDonald was brutally attacked. While defending her life, a man was killed. After a coercive interrogation, CeCe was incarcerated in a men's prison in Minnesota. An international campaign to free CeCe garnered significant support from media and activists, including actress Laverne Cox. Cox signed on as executive producer of "FREE CECE!," committed to exploring the role race, class, and gender played in CeCe's case. In the end, CeCe emerged not only as a survivor, but also as a leader.

Documentarian Jacqueline "Jac" Gares pushed past the everyday narratives of victimhood surrounding the lives of transgender people, to spotlight the way CeCe and other trans people are leading a growing movement fighting for the rights of transgender people everywhere. CeCe's powerful story highlights the groundswell of voices questioning the prison industrial complex and calling for its disassembly.

"FREE CECE!" is directed and produced by Gares and executive produced by Laverne Cox. Slobodan Randjelovic also served as producer. Original music is by Jordana LeSesne with editing by Erik Satre.

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