Spies of Mississippi           
(51 min) USA
[watch trailer]
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Monday 10/21, 9:20 PM (Session 17)

Director: Dawn Porter
Producer: Risa Morimoto


It is the spring of 1964 and a long, hot Mississippi summer is about to explode. The civil rights community is gearing up for a major operation nicknamed, Mississippi Freedom Summer. Hundreds – if not thousands – of white student activists from the North are preparing to link up with dozens of black freedom workers in the Magnolia State to accomplish what the Mississippi power structure fears the most: Registering black people to vote. The state's entrenched white power structure has a different name for Freedom Summer – they call it an, "invasion." For the segregationists, Freedom Summer is nothing less than a declaration of war on the Mississippi way of life. A no-nonsense group called the Mississippi State Sovereignty Commission has quietly created a secret, state-funded spy agency answering directly to the governor. The commission has infiltrated the civil rights coalition, eavesdropping on its most private meetings and pilfering its most sensitive documents. The spies' method of obtaining such sensitive information can be traced to an even more explosive secret known only to a handful of state officials that oversee the commission and its anti-civil rights spy apparatus.


Dawn Porter is an award-winning producer and director whose most recent documentary, Gideon's Army, won the 2013 Sundance Editing Award in addition to the Tribeca All Access Creative Promise Award. The film has received generous grants from the Ford Foundation, The Tribeca Film Institute, The Sundance Film Institute and Chicken & Egg Pictures. Dawn previously worked as Director of Standards and Practices at ABC News and as a Vice President of Standard and Practices at A&E Television Networks. Dawn was an executive producer on Serious Moonlight, written by Adrienne Shelley and starring Meg Ryan and Timothy Hutton, and The Green Showtime Networks starring Cheyenne Jackson and Julia Ormond.

Contact Information:

e: pepper012@hotmail.com
w: www.spiesofmississippithefilm.com

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