Sunday, July 14, 2013
Born in August 1978 in Taipei, Taiwan, Steve Chen co-launched the video-sharing website YouTube in 2005. YouTube ranked as the 10th most popular website a year after its launch.
Chen, YouTube’s chief technology officer, was named to 2006’s “The 50 People Who Matter Now” list by Business 2.0 magazine. That same year, Google bought YouTube for $1.64 billion in stock.
Raised in Taiwan, Chen and his family immigrated to the United States when he was 15.After graduating from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Chen worked at PayPal, where he met Chad Hurley and Jawed Karim. In 2005, the three founded YouTube, which quickly became one of the web's fastest-growing sites and was ranked as the 10th most popular website just a year after its launch.
Monday, July 8, 2013
The Bridge, which premieres on FX on July 10, is a present-day crime thriller exploring the tensions on the U.S.-Mexico border. When an American judge known for her anti-immigration views is found dead on the bridge connecting El Paso and Juarez, Sonya Cross (Diane Kruger) from El Paso PD must work with her Mexican counterpart from Chihuahua State Police, Marco Ruiz (Demian Bichir), to catch a serial killer operating on both sides of the border. Marco understands the slippery politics of Mexican law enforcement, and while his police force slowly succumbs to the pressures and demands of the cartel, he’s one of the last good men in the department. He’s charming, but also cunning as he will do whatever it takes to get what he needs. This does not sit well with Sonya, who has Asperger’s and strictly follows rules as well as protocol. Her candid and off-putting personality fuels an unforgiving drive for truth. The case quickly pulls them into a string of murders on the border, a scene already consumed by illegal immigration, drug trafficking, violence and prostitution.
Wednesday, June 26, 2013
Born in London, Samantha Eggar (born 5 March 1939) is a film, television and voice actress. She began her acting career in several Shakespearean companies, and debuted on film in 1962 in The Wild and the Willing. Eggar starred in the comedy Walk Don't Run (1966) with Cary Grant in his last picture and Jim Hutton, father of actor Timothy Hutton. She received a nomination for the Academy Award for Best Actress for The Collector (1965), directed by William Wyler. She won a Golden Globe award for this performance and was also named Best Actress at the Cannes Film Festival.
Eggar has appeared as the wife of Captain Jean-Luc Picard's brother Robert in the television series Star Trek: The Next Generation.
Tuesday, June 25, 2013
Born in Canada, Tommy Chong (born May 24, 1938) is an, actor, writer, director, activist, and musician. He is well known for his marijuana-themed Cheech & Chong comedy movies with Cheech Marin, as well as playing the character Leo on Fox's That '70s Show. Chong is a naturalized citizen of the United States. Rae Dawn Chong is also a naturalized U.S. citizen.
Monday, June 24, 2013
Photo courtesy of Biography.com
Born in Canada, Jessalyn Gilsig (born November 30, 1971) is an actress known for her roles in the television series Boston Public, Nip/Tuck and as Will Schuester's wife/ex-wife, Terri Schuester, in Glee. She also appeared in several episodes of NYPD Blue, Prison Break, and had a recurring role on Heroes, as well as several other series.
Gilsig was born in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. She began acting at age 12. She attended high school at Trafalgar School for Girls in Montreal. She later studied at Harvard University’s American Repertory Theater, and attended McGill University, graduating with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English.
Sunday, June 23, 2013
1920. In search of a new start and the American dream, Ewa Cybulski and her sister Magda sail to New York from their native Poland. When they reach Ellis Island, doctors discover that Magda is ill, and the two women are separated. Ewa is released onto the mean streets of Manhattan while her sister is quarantined. Alone, with nowhere to turn and desperate to reunite with Magda, she quickly falls prey to Bruno, a charming but wicked man who takes her in and forces her into prostitution. And then one day, Ewa encounters Bruno's cousin, the debonair magician Orlando. He sweeps Ewa off her feet and quickly becomes her only chance to escape the nightmare in which she finds herself.
Click here for a review.
Saturday, June 22, 2013
Documented is a new film by Jose Antonio Vargas The film had its world premier at the AFI Docs Festival last night to a sold out crowd at the National Portrait Gallery. It chronicles the struggles and efforts of the Pulitzer Prize-winning former journalist, both before and after he outed himself as an undocumented immigrant in the New York Times Magazine. “Documented” chronicles his decision to transform his life. At some point, he could no longer keep his secret. He had become a successful journalist covering political campaigns and appearing on television. He had all the trappings of the American success story, but he lacked permission to be in the United States. He had been brought to the U.S. as a child and had no way to obtain a valid immigration status. And after seeing and speaking with thousands of immigrants in the same situation, he decided to “let the world in” to his secret and decided to become an immigration reform activist/provocateur.
Here is a review.
Natalie Portman (born in Jerusalem, Israel in June 9, 1981) is an actress with dual U.S. and Israeli citizenship. Her first role was as an orphan taken in by a hitman in the 1994 action film Léon: The Professional, but mainstream success came when she was cast as Padmé Amidala in the Star Wars prequel trilogy (released in 1999, 2002 and 2005). In 1999, she enrolled at Harvard University to study psychology while still working as an actress. She completed her bachelor's degree in 2003.
In 2001, Portman opened in New York City's Public Theater production of Anton Chekhov's The Seagull. In 2005, Portman won a Golden Globe Award and received an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress for her performance in the drama Closer. She won a Constellation Award for Best Female Performance and a Saturn Award for Best Actress for her starring role in V for Vendetta (2006). She played leading roles in the historical dramas Goya's Ghosts (2006) and The Other Boleyn Girl (2008). In May 2008, she served as the youngest member of the 61st Annual Cannes Film Festival jury. Portman's directorial debut, Eve, opened the 65th Venice International Film Festival's shorts competition in 2008. Portman directed a segment of the collective film New York, I Love You. Portman is also known for her portrayal as Jane Foster, the love interest of Marvel superhero Thor in the film adaptation Thor (2011) and its upcoming sequel Thor: The Dark World (2013).
In 2010, Portman starred in the psychological thriller Black Swan. Her performance received critical praise and earned her a second Golden Globe Award, the Screen Actors Guild Award, the BAFTA Award, the Broadcast Film Critics Association Award and the Academy Award for Best Actress in 2011.
Wednesday, June 19, 2013
Born in Moscow, Anna Kournikova is a retired professional tennis player. Her beauty and celebrity status made her one of the best known tennis stars worldwide. Although reaching No. 8 in the world in 2000, she never won professional singles title. Kournikova achieved greater success playing doubles, where she had at times been the World No. 1 player. With Martina Hingis as her partner, she won Grand Slam titles in Australia in 1999 and 2002.
Kournikova's professional tennis career ended prematurely at the age of 21 due to serious back and spinal problems. She lives in Miami Beach, Florida, and plays in occasional exhibitions and in doubles for the St. Louis Aces of World Team Tennis. She was a new trainer for season 12 of the television show The Biggest Loser, replacing Jillian Michaels, but did not return for season 13.
Here is Kournikova's official website.
The bottom line is that Superman better be careful. With Secure Communities operating at high speed, any brushes with the law are likely to trigger removal.
Friday, June 14, 2013
Actor Jim Carrey (born January 17, 1962) is an actor, comedian, and producer. Carrey has received four Golden Globe Award nominations, winning two. Known for his highly energetic slapstick performances, he has been described as one of the biggest movie stars in Hollywood. Carrey first gained recognition in 1990 after landing a recurring role in the sketch comedy In Living Color. His first leading roles in major productions came with Ace Ventura: Pet Detective (1994), Dumb and Dumber (1994), The Mask (1994), and Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls (1995). In 1997, he gave a critically acclaimed performance in Liar Liar, which earned him a Golden Globe Award nomination for Best Actor. He then starred in the critically acclaimed hits The Truman Show (1998) and Man on the Moon (1999), with each garnering him a Golden Globe Award for Best Actor. In 2000, he gained further recognition for his portrayal of the The Grinch in How the Grinch Stole Christmas. Three years later, Carrey starred in the major blockbuster film Bruce Almighty (2003). The following year he starred in Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004), for which he received another Golden Globe nomination in addition to a BAFTA Award nomination. He then starred in popular productions Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events (2004), Fun with Dick and Jane (2005), Yes Man (2008) and A Christmas Carol (2009). More recently, he has starred in Mr. Popper's Penguins (2011) and The Incredible Burt Wonderstone (2013). He is set to star in Kick-Ass 2 as Colonel Stars and Stripes in late 2013.
Carrey was born in Newmarket, Ontario, Canada, the son of Kathleen, a homemaker, and Percy Carrey (1927-1994), a musician and accountant. His mother was of French, Irish, and Scottish descent and his father was of French Canadian ancestry (the family's original surname was Carré).
Carrey became a naturalized U.S. citizen in October 2004 and remains a dual citizen of both the United States and Canada.
Tomorrow is the one-year anniversary of the announcement of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. After organizing by immigrant youth and their allies, President Barack Obama announced on June 15, 2012, that the U.S. Department of Homeland Security would not deport certain undocumented youth and that these youth would be eligible for work permits.
Click here for a snapshot of this program and DACA’s future. From August 15, 2012, to April 30, 2013, 515,922 people applied for DACA and 497,965 have been approved. Mexico, South Korea, and the Philippines are among applicants’ top 10 countries of origin.
Thursday, June 13, 2013
A naturalized U.S. citizen, Salma Hayek Jiménez is a Mexican-born film actress, director and producer. She began her career in Mexico starring in the telenovela Teresa. In 1991, Hayek moved to Hollywood and came to prominence with roles in Hollywood movies such as Desperado (1995), Dogma (1999), and Wild Wild West (1999). Her breakthrough role was in the 2002 film Frida as Frida Kahlo which she received an Academy Award, BAFTA Award, Screen Actors Guild Award and Golden Globe Award nomination for Best Actress. Hayek played a brutal druglord in the 2012 Oliver Stone movie Savages.
In this time of crisis, we believe that there is no room for negotiation when it comes to the legal status of our nation’s residents and culture. As Congress debates immigration reform, it is imperative that we do our best to preserve American culture. For this reason, we, the Legals for the Preservation of American Culture, have launched a campaign to deport the Statue of Liberty back to France. We call on US citizens, like you, to join us in insisting that our government remove the statue for the sake of our nation’s heritage and it’s future. We need to #TakeLibertyBack and #DeportTheStatue NOW!
FRONTLINE and Univision News Present Rape in the Fields/Violación de un Sueño Tuesday, June 25, 2013, at 10 p.m. on PBS Saturday, June 29, 2013, at 7 p.m. on the Univision Network
For the women who pick and handle the food we eat every day, sexual assault often comes with the job. FRONTLINE partners with Univision News--the award-winning news division of the leading media company serving Hispanic America, Univision Communications, Inc.--for Rape in the Fields/Violación de un Sueño, to uncover the hidden price that many migrant women working in America's fields and packing plants, especially those who are undocumented, are paying to keep their jobs and provide for their families. While debate rages on Capitol Hill over the legal and economic impact of immigration reforms, this FRONTLINE documentary focuses on the human side of the issue: how female farm workers fall prey to their field bosses and co-workers--and dare not denounce their attackers. Otherwise, they run the very real risk that they'll lose their jobs or be deported.
The film Dirty Wars is opening in San Francisco and Berkeley on Friday, June 14, and other cities nationwide. The film features independent journalist Jeremy Scahill, the New York Times bestselling author of Blackwater and now Dirty Wars (the book of the same title as the film). The film won the Cintematography Prize at Sundance. Variety says it is "astonishingly hard-hitting" and adds: "This jaw-dropping, persuasively researched pic has the power to pry open government lockboxes."
Thursday, May 30, 2013
Monday, May 20, 2013
There are several really wonderful documentary films that have been made regarding immigration law. At least two that come to mind are: Golden Venture and 9500 Liberty. When I teach immigration law, I typically show clips from these films to underscore the human stories that tend to get marginalized in discussions about cases, laws and policies.
Another outstanding immigration-related film is Crossing Arizona. This film features various perspectives of people whose lives have been affected by immigration law enforcement. Using interviews of migrants, human rights advocates, Minutemen, ranchers, border patrol agents, and employers, Crossing Arizona highlights the compelling views of different groups regarding stricter enforcement of immigration law at the border.
I raise it here because we ended Monday's session of the course on immigration law at the border in El Paso, TX by showing portions of Crossing Arizona. As I explained in a previous post, Monday's program focused on case law analysis of U.S. v. Brignoni-Ponce and progeny as well as a tour of the border. Crossing Arizona provided additional context to what we focused in class today. Notably, the film helped to launch discussion among the students regarding ways of improving immigration law.
Wednesday, May 15, 2013
From the Bookshelves: Amor and Exile: True Stories of Love Across America's Borders by Nathaniel Hoffman and Nicole Salgado
Across the United States, American citizens are forced underground, exiled abroad and separated from their spouses for a surprising reason. Amor and Exile is the story of American citizens—including Veronica, Ben, J.W., and Nicole—who fall in love with undocumented immigrants only to find themselves trapped in a legal labyrinth, stymied by their country’s de facto exclusion of their partners. Journalist Nathaniel Hoffman visited both sides of the border to document the lives of these couples caught in the crossfire of America’s high stakes political fight over immigration. In his disarming and precise style, Hoffman also traces the historical relationship between immigration, love and marriage. Lending an authentic voice to Amor and Exile, coauthor Nicole Salgado delivers a searing first-person account of life in the U.S. with her husband while he was undocumented, her tortured decision to leave the country with him, and their seven years of exile and starting over together in Mexico.
Amor and Exile tells of love that transcends borders—a story shared by hundreds of thousands of U.S. citizens—cutting through the immigration debate rhetoric and providing a courageous perspective for one of the most vexing policy problems of our time.
Tuesday, May 14, 2013
PBS has announced that LATINO AMERICANS, a landmark three-part, six-hour documentary series narrated by actor Benjamin Bratt, will air nationally on PBS on three consecutive Tuesdays, premiering on September 17, September 24 and October 1. LATINO AMERICANS is the first major documentary series for television to chronicle the rich and varied history and experiences of Latinos, who have for the past 500-plus years helped shape what is today the United States and have become, with more than 50 million people, the largest minority group in the U.S.
A companion book by Ray Suarez, Senior Correspondent for PBS NEWSHOUR, will be released to coincide with the series. The television broadcast will also be accompanied by a nationwide public engagement initiative, and bilingual digital engagement and public education campaigns.
ATINO AMERICANS is led by Emmy Award-winning series producer Adriana Bosch and documents the evolution of a new “Latino American” identity from the 1500s to the present day, featuring interviews with close to 100 Latinos from the worlds of politics, business and pop culture — including Herman Badillo, Dolores Huerta, Gloria Estefan and Rita Moreno — as well as deeply personal portraits of lesser-known Latinos who lived through key chapters in American history.