Screening Room

MIPCOM Picks ’15: A Brave Heart – The Lizzie Velasquez Story

Elizabeth "Lizzie" Velasquez was born with a rare syndrome that prevents her from gaining weight. This is a portrait of the power of positivity and perseverance in the face of adversity.
September 1, 2015


Partners: Produced by Women Rising; distributed by Cinedigm, Tugg and ro*co films
Length: 1 x 78/1 x 53 minutes
Premiered: March 2015 (SXSW)
Rights available: All rights outside of North America, Taiwan

Elizabeth “Lizzie” Velasquez was born with a rare syndrome that prevents her from gaining weight. Experiencing bullying as a child in school, the teasing took on a more horrifying turn when she became a teenager, and a video posted on YouTube, mocking her as “the world’s ugliest woman,” garnered scores of unconscionable comments. Remarkably, Velasquez chose to fight back, creating her own viral videos, speaking at a TEDx talk and having that video viewed millions of times, and heading to Capitol Hill in Washington to lobby for stronger anti-bullying laws. This is a portrait of the power of positivity and perseverance in the face of adversity.

About The Author
Andrew Jeffrey joined Realscreen in 2021 as its news editor. Here, he helps to oversee assignment, reporting and editing for Realscreen's daily newsletter. Prior to his work covering documentary and non-fiction film and TV, he worked as a reporter and associate producer for CBC Edmonton, and as a reporter for The Star Calgary, where he covered daily news on beats such as local and provincial politics, health care and harm reduction, sports and education. His work has appeared in other Canadian news outlets such as TVO, the Edmonton Journal and Avenue Magazine.

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