OUR NEIGHBORHOOD: Washington’s TV Cold War in Latin America across the 1960s is a feature-length documentary about Washington’s secret mobilization of TV to wage mass-cultural counterinsurgency throughout Latin America across the 1960s. Its 90 minutes examine the convergence of two revolutions: television’s conquest of Latin American mass media and Castro’s overthrow of the US empire in Cuba. Our Neighborhood‘s heart is archival footage of the actual programs the United States Information Agency (USIA) covertly and semicovertly sponsored for Latin American broadcasting in the 1960s. Across the sixties, the USIA covertly produced hundreds of hours of programming covering a wide-range of genres; serial melodramas and action series, regular newscasts and special reports, entertainment and educational talk shows all focused on discrediting the Cuban Revolution. Publicly unviewed since the programs aired over four decades ago, this footage is a major primary source about the little-known history of US foreign policy and TV propaganda, the interamerican Cold War, and Latin American television. In addition to its archival video, Our Neighborhood includes original onscreen interviews with surviving producers and performers, dramatized dialogue culled from an unprecedented trove of revelatory documents –– declassified for this project through its writer-director’s Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) case –– about the examined programs’ international production, distribution, and reception. Tax-deductible contributions to Our Neighborhood's production can be directly made to its fiscal sponsor, the Center for Independent Documentary. Fein's essay The Medium Shapes the Message connects Washington's post-9/11 TV operations in the Middle East to its post-Cuban Revolution TV operations in Latin America, which Our Neighborhood explores. In November 2016, Fein presents a talk at the University of Manchester's Critical Mass Seminar about how this project that began as a book became a film.
Seth Fein produced and narrated the above sample from his archival research; the interview with John Gres, was produced at Pickerel Pie Entertainment's Long Island City studio.
OUR NEIGHBORHOOD'S PRODUCTION TEAM
DIRECTOR/WRITER SETH FEIN
EXECUTIVE PRODUCER SABIN STREETER
PRODUCER DEWEY THOMPSON
ASSOCIATE PRODUCER CHRISTOPHER TORELLA
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