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April 2007
2007 Tribeca Preview
First Look: lillieandleander


First Look:

Director: Jeffrey Morgan

Trailer: http://www.sandyhollowproductions.com/SandyHollow/Trailer.html

April 2007 - Imagine learning that members of your family committed possibly hundreds of racially charged murders in the early 1900's. This was the case for producer Alice Brewton Hurwitz, who lived with this troubling secret for two years, then resolved to search for answers and justice. LILLIE & LEANDER: A LEGACY OF VIOLENCE, an independent documentary directed, edited, and co-produced by Jeffrey Morgan, follows Alice as she uncovers the truth behind her gruesome family secret, eventually finding herself in the middle of an Assistant State Attorney's investigation searching to find human remains.

When Alice was twenty years old and newly married, her grandmother told her of the murder of her great-great Aunt Lillie by an African American man named Leander in 1908. The accused assailant was lynched, and Alice thought it was the end of this old story. However, thirty years later, when she began looking into this piece of the family history, Alice learned that the revenge did not end with the lynching. According to one of her elderly relatives, the men in the victim's family killed all black men who walked along the road outside the family's house for years to come. It is unclear how many men were killed or how long the killings lasted, but Alice was determined to find answers. In 2002, she paired with director, Jeffrey Morgan to document the investigation and LILLIE & LEANDER: A LEGACY OF VIOLENCE was born. Together, Alice and Jeff have searched for the facts and brought to light the secrets buried at the turn of the 20th century in Florida.

“The moment Alice told me her story, I knew it was something I had to be a part of,” said Jeffrey Morgan, director of LILLIE & LEANDER: A LEGACY OF VIOLENCE. “This was my first step into the world of documentary filmmaking and this story provided more drama or obstacles than any story I could have created. My hope is that this movie can act as a spring-board into communication between all of the parties involved so that we can finally bring the truth to light.”

Faced with the knowledge that her family potentially committed these serial murders of black men, and others stayed silent while it happened, Alice has not given up her pursuit of the truth and the dynamics of the violence.

“Knowing that members of your family and the community where you grew up might be guilty of racial murders is hard to accept,” says Alice Brewton Hurwitz, producer of LILLIE & LEANDER: A LEGACY OF VIOLENCE. “I knew I could not keep this secret to myself and hope this film will help start the healing process for not only the families who lost loved ones to senseless violence during this time, but for those of us who inherited racial prejudices from our ancestors.”

About Jeffrey Morgan - Director, Editor, and Co-Producer:

Born in California and raised in Alaska, Jeffrey Morgan currently works as a producer and in-house director at Deutsch Advertising in New York. He had made fifteen short films before completing high school and, with the financial assistance from his Native American tribe the Fallon Paiute, graduated from the Kanbar Institute of Film and Television Productions at NYU in 1999. In 2005 he was selected by the Tribeca Film Institute's All Access Connects Program for LILLIE & LEANDER: A LEGACY OF VIOLENCE.

About Alice Brewton Hurwitz - Producer and Protagonist:

Alice Brewton Hurwitz recently retired as Coordinator of Academic Support Services at NYU's Tisch School of the Arts Kanbar Institute of Film and Television. Influenced by the film students she advised, Alice recognized that documentary film was an appealing story-telling medium and began researching an old family story that became the basis of LILLIE & LEANDER: A LEGACY OF VIOLENCE. Working on this documentary production that began in 2001 has allowed her to seek out some insight into her family's past. Additionally, she's finding more time for the character acting parts she enjoys, and getting back to an artist's life of painting and writing.

Screening Times:

Friday, April 27, 5:00 pm, AMC Village VII-Theater 1, Wednesday, May 2, 2:45 pm, AMC 34th Street-Theater 13, Thursday, May 3, 7:15 pm, AMC 34th Street-Theater 12, Sunday, May 6, 1:30 pm, AMC 34th Street-Theater 12.

The film's Press & Industry Screening has been scheduled for Saturday, April 28 at AMC 34th Street-Theater 13 at 11:00 am..

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