Subjects: Immigration Studies, Race, Power & Privilege, Class Disparities
Contending with the constant attack on immigrants and Immigration Law, the lawyers on the front-lines are feeling burned out and disillusioned. This film takes us into the lives and work of five members of an informal support group comprised of Mexican-American, solo-practitioners who got their start at the same high-intensity law firm in Los Angeles. Through their friendship and constant communication, Araceli, Alma, Gladdys, Elizabeth and Jose provide professional and emotional support for each other as they navigate the constant attacks on their clients and profession. Through their perspectives, we see how changes in the interpretation of the laws and in legal procedures directly affect the people they so passionately advocate for by endangering their safety and prolonging family separation. After several years in the trenches, even the most dedicated come to question whether they can continue in this often-heartbreaking line of work.
STATUS PENDING won the IF/Then Shorts Pitch competition at the 2019 Big Sky Documentary Film Festival and was selected to participate in NALIP’s 2019 Latino Media Market
OVER A DOZEN FESTIVAL PLAYS INCLUDING
Big Sky Film Festival
AFI Film Festival
Palm Springs Film Festival WINNER - Audience Pick
Los Angeles Latino International Film Festival
About the filmmaker
Priscilla Gonzalez Sainz is a Mexican-American filmmaker based in Southern California. Her work explores themes of displacement, identity, and transnationalism that call social and political barriers into question. Priscilla earned her MFA in Documentary Film and Video from Stanford University where she completed her thesis film ‘Room 140’ that was a Semifinalist for the Student Academy Award and nominated for theIDA Wolper Student Documentary Achievement Award. In 2020, Priscilla completed ‘Status Pending’ with the support of Tribeca Film Institute, IF/Then Shorts, and the National Association of Latino Independent Producers (NALIP). Recently, Priscilla was selected for Catapult Film Fund’s Research Grant to develop a new project, making her one of five filmmakers participating in this inaugural fellowship program. She has contributed to award winning films, including credits as an additional editor for ‘Aguilas’ (2021) and ‘The Infiltrators’ (2019), and works for the Documentary department at Chapman University’s College of Film and Media Arts.