Archer student leaders were among the 7,000 young women to attend the west coast premiere of “He Named Me Malala” on Sept. 29. Girls Build Los Angeles (GBLA) sponsored the event at the Microsoft Theater at LA Live.
The documentary by Davis Guggenheim tells the story of 17-year-old Malala Yousafzai, the student and Nobel Peace Prize winner who was shot in the forehead by the Taliban for speaking out about girls’ education. See the trailer below for more information.
“Whenever I make a movie, I have an audience in mind. I think of who’s going to be watching it. For this movie, I had an audience in mind — and it was you guys,” Guggenheim said to the audience of middle and high school girls. “I want girls in my city to know [Malala’s story].”
Upper School Director Samantha Coyne-Donnel, Dean of Students Travis Nesbitt and history teachers Beth Gold and Margret Shirk chaperoned the student leaders on the trip. Everyone on the trip has been reflecting about the movie and the event.
“What resonates with me is the power of a voice. Voice is powerful, it’s yours. We can freely express our ideas and our opinions even if they are different from others’,” Coyne-Donnel said.
“Learning about the obstacles Malala faced in trying to educate herself, hopefully the girls of Los Angeles who attended the screening gained perspective on the importance and value of their education,” Nesbitt wrote in an email interview.
Among the students on the trip were Diversity Club Co-President Ava-Rose Beech ’16 and Girls Educate Girls Club President Sofia Garrick ’16.
“[The movie] was inspirational because it didn’t just tell the story that we all knew. I liked that it gave a view into [Malala’s] life and showed what she personally feels other than just being a hero,” Beech said.
“The movie did a really good job of not only making [Malala] seem a hero but also making her seem normal. It inspired me, and I’m sure it inspired many of the girls that were there yesterday too; they can make a difference and do something in their own communities,” said Garrick.