Ava DuVernay’s film collective ARRAY has officially acquired the Sonia Lowman directed documentary, Teach Us All. Teach Us All is Lowman’s feature debut and “examines the U.S. education system, from the historic Little Rock Crisis to present-day disparities in access that are culminating into a re-segregation of schools across the nation.” The film will begin a national screening tour to accompany its streaming release, including stops in Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Seattle, Houston, Memphis, and Gary, Indiana.
When nine African-American students were chosen to integrate Arkansas’ previously all-white Little Rock Central High School in 1957, they were met with violent and racially charged resistance. Today, the Little Rock Nine’s integration is recognized as a key part of the Civil Rights Movement. Lowman’s film will tell the stories of current students in Little Rock, as well as those of two surviving Little Rock Nine members, and connect them to case studies in other corners of the country using interviews, archival images and news footage.
“Through her film, documentarian Sonia Lowman has created an important platform for discussion about the current state of education in our nation and how far we have come—or not come—in the past 60 years,” said ARRAY’s Executive Director Tilane Jones in a statement. “We’re thrilled to add this meaningful work to ARRAY’s catalog and we look forward to sharing the story’s call to action with audiences worldwide at the time of the anniversary.”
DuVernay launched ARRAY in 2010 under the name African-American Film Festival Releasing Movement (AFFRM). In 2015 the company re-branded itself as ARRAY and expanded its focus to release and champion films by black filmmakers from the African diaspora, as well as women and other filmmakers of color. Since its inception in 2010, DuVernay and her team at ARRAY have committed themselves wholeheartedly to finding ways to expose films by people of color and women to audiences across the country.
Teach Us All will be the 17th release for ARRAY. The organization has already released a total of 15 films in only 5 years: ‘I Will Follow’ (2011), ‘Kinyarwanda’ (2011), ‘Restless City’ (2012),‘Middle of Nowhere‘ (2012), ‘Better Mus’ Come‘ (2013), ‘Big Words‘ (2013), ‘Vanishing Pearls‘ (2014), ‘Mississippi Damned‘ (2015 via Netflix), ’25 Years to Life’ (2014), ‘Ayanda’(2015), ‘Out of My Hand‘ (2015), ‘Ashes and Embers’ (2016), ‘Echo Park‘ (2016), ‘Honey‘ (2016), Namour (2017), ‘The House on Coco Road‘ (2017).