Screens with:

Manufactured Luck

Sat Feb 25, 2023 – 5:00 pm | Downtown Beloit Association
Fri Mar 3, 2023 – 7:30 pm | Downtown Beloit Association

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The Exchange. In White America. Kaukauna & King 50 Years Later

Directed by Joanne Williams
Documentary Feature
United States | 61 min | 2022

This is the story of an exchange of Black and White high school students in Wisconsin. The schools are Rufus King High School in Milwaukee and Kaukauna High School in the Fox River Valley. This exchange happened in 1966 … right in the middle of the Civil Rights Movement … more than 50 years ago.

The participants lived in each others’ homes, attended classes in each others’ schools and performed the groundbreaking play “In White America” in both cities. This was the first time some of the Kaukauna students had ever seen Black people in person. This was the first time the Black and White students from Milwaukee had ever lived in a small, all-white town in central Wisconsin.

This is the story of the revival of the play 50 years later by a new generation of high school students in the same schools and communities. You will meet some of those students and learn what the exchange meant to their lives when they were teenagers, and what it means to them now.

​Restaging the play in 2016 has already fostered community engagement events. The film about the exchange will generate new conversations about ways to improve race relations through theatre, education, empathy, and optimism.

AWARDS

Winner of the People’s Choice Award
Montreal International Documentary Festival (RIDM), 2021

The Best Feature Documentary Award
Indy Film Fest, 2022

The Cercle d’or for Best Feature Documentary Award
Sherbrooke World Film Festival, 2022

The Grand Prix Documentary Award
Rising Sun International Film Festival, 2022

The Silver Award for Best Feature Documentary
Tokyo Film Awards, 2022

The Dr. Sydney K. Shapiro Humanitarian Award
Phoenix Film Festival, 2022

The Best Editing of a Documentary Award
Madrid International Film Festival, 2022

The Excellence in Editing Award
Docs Without Borders Film Festival, 2022

The Best Editing Award
Brussels World Film Festival, 2022

REVIEWS

“Truly a rare moment in Cinema… This film is a marvel”
Mélikah Abdelmoumen & Marc Béland, CBC Radio Canada

“An Exquisite Gem. Tenderness, wonder, & dignity…
a beautiful film about beautiful people”
Richard Propes, The Independent Critic

“Anyone who watches Dear Audrey will undoubtedly conclude
that Hayes is a masterful filmmaker”
Charlie Smith, The Georgia Straight

“Touching… luminous… truly magnificent”
Caroline Levesque, CBC Radio Canada

“Dear Audrey, a riveting documentary…
that stands as a powerful paean to passion and perseverance”
Evelyn C White, The Halifax Examiner

“…so many amazing lessons, stories, emotions with pain
and celebration intertwined”
Darren Wiesner, Hollywood North Magazine

“It’s impossible to watch this documentary, (a People’s Choice Award winner), without being overwhelmed by its sweetness and generosity”
Silvia Galipeau, La Press

“…an at once ethereal reflection on the enduring power of love,
and unblinking revelation of life’s steel-cold realities”
Chris Cook, Gorilla Radio

“The central force of Dear Audrey is the eternal, almost implacable force of love that binds people together through the most difficult times”
Dorothy Woodend, The Tyee

“Dear Audrey celebrates the very best the human heart has to offer, with such compassion, artistry and grace”
Terre Nash, Oscar-winning director

“A Stunning Love Story You Won’t Soon Forget!”
Indy Film Fest

“This love story will bring you joy, hope, tears and humility…”
Dr. Jen Hammersmark, Mind Your Madness

“…a beautiful homage to Audrey, to the couple’s
love and their family”
Nantali Indongo, CBC Radio

“Beautiful, touching … ‘Dear Audrey’ is a testament to
what Audrey was and what she remains forever”
Rob Wilson, The Bobr Times

“Poignant and could not be more authentic”
Amandine de Chanteloup, Le Collectif

Be who you are meant to be!

The Exchange in White America | Kaukauna & King 50 Years Later

The Exchange. In White America - Joanne WilliamsJoanne Williams
Director

Her career began in high school when she hosted the teen talk show on Milwaukee’s WAWA. Two weeks after graduating with honors in film from Northwestern, she started working for WTMJ. In 1973, Joanne and Pete Wilson started The Morning Scene – the first 30-minute, early morning TV newscast in Milwaukee.

That was followed by several years at WGN in Chicago as a reporter, writer and part-time weathercaster.

She returned as WITI’s Community Relations Director in 1978, producing many projects, including “The Disabled Are Able”, which was nominated for a national daytime Emmy. In 1982, Joanne returned to the WITI newsroom and wore many hats as reporter, anchor and producer during her tenure.

She was the host and segment producer for Milwaukee Public Television’s “Black Nouveau” which won a Chicago Regional EMMY for the special “Crossing The Bridge” in 2018, awards from the National Association of Black Journalists in 2012 and won the Bronze award from the Milwaukee Press Club for Best Documentary or news special for the program “Harry Kemp: The Photography Man”.

Joanne was a regional director on the board of the National Association of Black Journalists, a founding member of the Wisconsin Black Media Association, past president of the Milwaukee Press Club. She is a member of the Milwaukee Press Club Hall of Fame and a National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences Silver Circle honoree in 2009. In 2014 the Milwaukee Business Journal honored her as a Woman of Influence for her inspiration to others.

Joanne “retired” in 2008.

Film Information

Director: Joanne l William
Country: United States
Year: 2022
Language: English
Runtime: 61 min
Rated:  PG

Credits

Writer: Joanne I. Williams, Gary Reistad, Kathleen Tank
Producers: Joanne l Williams, Debbie Paschke
Key Cast: Phyllis Lawhorn Wilson, Joe McCarty, Allen Kemp, Linda Plutchak, Bill Derricks

Connect With This Film

BIFF - Beloit International Film Festival
BIFF | Beloit International Film Festival