Alumna’s film on Vietnam ‘babylift’ to be showcased at SMU

Dallas-based nonprofit Against the Grain Productions will show excerpts from their award-winning documentary “Operation Babylift: The Lost Children of Vietnam” as part of a presentation for SMU’s 2010 Asian American Leadership and Educational Conference (AALEC) Feb. 19-20.

Filmmaker Tammy Nguyen Lee (’00) will join cast member/adoptee DC Wolfe in a panel discussion immediately following the screening. The events will take place from 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Feb. 19 in SMU’s Hughes-Trigg Student Center Theater.

The 2009 production is Lee’s feature directorial debut and tells the story of how more than 2,500 orphans were airlifted out of Vietnam during the last days of the Vietnam War – including their journeys and struggles growing up in America. The documentary presents both historical and contemporary views of Operation Babylift, featuring interviews from a cross-section of adoptees, their parents and volunteers, as well as archival and rare home video footage.

“The story of Operation Babylift relates to so many people on a number of levels and covers issues of identity to international adoption today. In a particularly relevant time, I’m honored to share it with young minds who can use it as a springboard for their own growth and learning,” Lee said.

“We think that students will get a deeper understanding of the meaning of finding their identity and learn from Tammy and DC on how having confidence has helped them reached their goals,” says Yen Diep, AALEC programming director.

The film has received the Audience Choice Award for Best Feature Film at the Vietnamese International Film Festival and the Documentary Audience Choice Award from the Philadelphia Asian American Film Festival.

Read more about Tammy Nguyen Lee from SMU Magazine