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Monday, June 18, 2012


MOMS WITH ISSUES--Two years ago, a trio of film-loving friends traveled to the Sundance Film Festival and over the course of four days, saw 16 movies, most of which will never make it to theaters. On the flight home to San Diego, these three hard-chargers started their own production company -- Moms With Issues -- with a mission to change all that.

“At Sundance, we saw a number of extraordinary films, primarily documentaries, that rarely make it to the theaters,” says Moms With Issues co-founder Pat Hughes of Del Mar.

Fast forward to today. "After screening literally hundreds of films, including more than 40 that we've seen at Sundance over the past two years, we selected five acclaimed independent films that fulfill our mission to inspire the minds of our 14-18 year old young leaders.”

And from June 22-24 at La Jolla Country Day School in La Jolla, these Moms With Issues present the world premiere of the Young Leaders Film Festival with tickets for each film just $7 for all ages. (Except opening night, which includes other speakers and perks, for $15 per ticket.)

Hughes and fellow Moms Kathryn Brinton of Del Mar and Carol Tager of Rancho Santa Fe carefully vetted the selection of independent films on tap for the YLFF, documentaries and features selected for their ability to appeal to and challenge students interested in leadership. The Festival features a range of films whose themes ignite personal growth, social action, and positive change.

EVENT DETAILS: All films will be shown from June 22 to June 24 in the Four Flowers Theater on the campus of La Jolla Country Day School, 9490 Genesee Avenue, La Jolla, CA 92037. Tickets can be purchased for $7 each on-line through



An official selection at the Sundance, Berlin, SXSW, and Tribeca Film Festivals, this documentary recounts the untold story of Harry Belafonte, not only one of the world’s great entertainers - but an important catalyst in the civil rights movement. Sing Your Song has won multiple awards since its release in 2011, and is a New York Times Critic Pick.

SHOW TIME: Friday June 22 - 6:30PM

Tickets $15 - includes opening reception.


A documentary collaboration between an Israeli and a Palestinian farmer whose life is disrupted by the building of Israel’s security fence near his west bank village. The story is told through the lenses of five cameras, each which is broken in the struggle. The New York Times says: “Difficult viewing - but necessary.” Sundance - 2012 Presentation. SHOW TIMES: Saturday June 23 - 10AM. Sunday June 24 - 4PM.


A sports drama depicting the struggles and successes Matt Hamill faces on the way to becoming a UFC champion. Through sheer determination, he uses his perceived disability as an asset, and becomes both the first deaf wrestler to win a National Collegiate Championship and an inspirational force to the hearing and deaf alike. An Audience Award winner at the AFI Film Festival.

SHOW TIME: Saturday June 23 - 1 PM.


A battered suitcase is delivered to Fumiko Ishioka at the Tokyo Holocaust Museum. The suitcase came from the Auschwitz Museum and had Hana Bradyʼs name painted on it. Larry Weinsteinʼs internationally acclaimed film follows Fumikoʼs search to discover the details of Hanaʼs life. This is a Holocaust story with unique perspective for young leaders. SHOWTIMES: Saturday June 23 - 4PM. Sunday June 24 - 1PM


Susan Seidelman’s romantic tale of two New Yorkers, Armando from the Bronx, and Mia from the Upper East Side, who come together through their love of ballroom dancing. When a tragic accident puts Mia in a wheelchair, Armando dedicates himself to helping Mia dance once more by introducing her to the world of competitive wheelchair ballroom dancing. SHOWTIMES: Saturday June 23 - 7PM. Sunday June 24 - 10AM

Young Leaders Film Festival concludes Sunday at 7PM with “Sunday Night Shorts,” 6 short films, plus StoryCorps, and films from the 1st Annual LJCDS Student Video and Film Festival.

PHOTO CAPTION: Moms With Issues (left to right) Pat Hughes, Kathryn Brinton and Carol Tager, who launch the world premiere of the Young Leaders Film Festival June 22-24 here in San Diego.

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