Last Monday, we were honored to host the U.S. premiere of the award-winning documentary film, India’s Daughter, along with Plan International, Meryl Streep, Freida Pinto, and film director Leslee Udwin.
Meryl Streep opened the evening’s program, leading a traditional candle-lighting ceremony in honor of the 2012 gang rape victim Jyoti Singh, a 23-year-old medical student, who died as a result of the attack.
“This moving documentary is harrowing not only for its heartbreaking, unflinching look at a young woman’s life brutally ended, but for the intimate, clear eyed look at the young men who broke her, and their defenders,” said Streep, “It forces a look at the mindset that must be made to know it has no place in the civilized world.”
The film then premiered to a packed house at Baruch College and received thunderous applause. In the 48 hours following the premiere Monday evening, Director Leslee Udwin has received an outpouring of interest and support.
She said, “the profound pain and disappointment in humankind which overpowered me during my 2 years in hell making this documentary, have been healed by the fortifying warmth, passion and commitment of your support. There are no words to describe my gratitude to you all for this.”
Help us keep the momentum you can do to help spread the word about the film. We would greatly appreciate it if you would consider supporting Leslee as she launches the India’s Daughter campaign, which will enable us to get the film out into communities around the world, sparking discussion, advocacy, and understanding.
As Freida Pinto said in her closing rally on Monday night, “I’m calling on girls and women, boys and men everywhere to watch this incredible film and then take action: Where you see abuse – report it. Where you witness discrimination – speak out. Let’s make sure that Jyoti Singh’s ultimate legacy is a world free from violence against women and girls.”
Director Leslee Udwin created this documentary to continue the conversation which activists and civil society have been demanding for so long now, and to unleash a campaign to ensure gender equality for women around the world.
The India’s Daughter campaign will include projects such as:
- “Stop the Shame” to encourage girls and women to speak out about offenses committed against them and shift the shame where it belongs – to men who commit such offences, and society which encourages negative attitudes towards women.
- Partnering with Shakti Vahini to use the film as a tool in their monthly sensitization training sessions with police and lawmakers.
- Taking the film as an educational tool for gender respect to schools and colleges throughout India, starting with the state of Maharashtra where the education board has agreed to take the film through its 189,000 volunteers with discussion guides to 20,000,000 students in the state.
If you were moved by the film and feel inspired to act, we hope you will join Jill Iscol, Caren Turner and others by contributing to the India’s Daughter campaign.