"I broke all those rules," Rodriguez said. "I worked with animals, children and took the movie all over
Hosted by the
"Dream" centers on the Martinez family who is torn apart after their undocumented immigrant parents are taken into
Rodriguez portrays eldest son David, who works to keep his siblings together despite separation attempts by law enforcement.
In 2006 Rodriguez began to write the script after reading an article about a family who faced a similar situation.
"It was my first time I witnessed something like that, and I thought could this be true?" Rodriguez said. "Seeing them crying and concerned, I said I'm going to make this my basis for the movie."
Rodriguez maintained a full-time job in
"There basically was no budget for this film, and everything was done one step at a time," Rodriguez said. "It's been challenging and a blessing to dedicate eight years to this film, and validate myself as an actor, writer and director."
He brought the film to
Ramirez, 39, graduated from
"I play one of the bad guys and have about a minute and a half of screen time, but it was fun to be in the film," Ramirez said.
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Ramirez moved to
"Baldemar is an example of success, and it feels good to be a part of something like this and for it to be shown in my hometown," Ramirez said. "There is so much potential in the Hispanic community, and if people will support it, more would get involved. We need to be telling these stories. If we don't who will?"
A portion of ticket sales will benefit MAP of
"We felt it important to bring this film here to put a face on a real story that's happening day to day,"
Ultimately, Rodriguez said, he wants the film to start a conversation.
"Whatever opinion people had about undocumented immigrants before they saw the film, I want people to know this isn't a political issue, it's a human issue," Rodriguez said. "I want them to see more than just a blurb or a headline in a news story, I want them to see the whole process of how this situation can impact a family."
What: "In Search of the American Dream" movie premiere
Cost: Tickets range from
Information: 879-0500; email@example.com
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