Feature

Meet filmmaker Min Sook Lee

Min Sook Lee - Migrant Dreams

Min Sook Lee - Migrant Dreams
Min Sook Lee

In Min Sook Lee’s award-winning documentary film, Migrant Dreams, a group of migrant farm workers dare to resist the systemic oppression and exploitation from their brokers, employers and Canadian government in small-town Ontario. The film exposes the underbelly of the Temporary Foreign Worker Program. Speaking out is the last thing the workers in the documentary can afford to do, but it’s the only thing left to do. 

Migrant Dreams premiered at the Hot Docs International Film Festival in 2016 and has since screened in theatres and festivals around the world, with additional showings on TVO and Al Jazeera (the latter offering global screening through the month of May 2018). In May of last year, the Canadian Association of Journalists recognized Lee for outstanding journalism in the Labour Reporting category; the film also won a Canadian Hillman Prize for Journalism, and in 2018 garnered a Canadian Screen Awards nomination for Best Social Political Documentary. Some of Lee’s other award-winning films are Tiger Spirit, The Real Inglorious Bastards and My Toxic Baby. 

Min Sook Lee - Migrant Dreams
Min Sook Lee - Migrant Dreams

In addition to her practice as a filmmaker, Lee is an assistant professor in the Faculty of Art. “I’ve been doing this for 20 years, so I can share experiences, production tips, approaches to making work and advice on submitting work,” she says. “OCAD U is a unique fulcrum where you have practice and theory together, so I’m able to draw students into a theoretical perspective that’s informed by experience in the field. It’s core to have a space to have a practice and reflect on the role of art in society. It’s embodied learning that becomes alive and acclimated. It’s a great space to learn and teach in.” 

Lee advises young filmmakers and multimedia artists to think about content and not get carried away with technology. She also says the point of being in school is to learn about yourself: “It’s a deeply personal process. Self-knowledge takes some vulnerability and opening up. Be aware that it’s part of the making.” 

At the same time, she acknowledges that critiques and, later, reviews, will always be part of the process. “Anybody can be deeply hurt by critique and I know the feeling. My films get reviewed and I read the negative ones and I still feel that. We make what we’re doing to share with people, but you open up to a whole range of experience. You have to find ways to make it useful, know who you are and what’s important.” 

Find out more: migrantdreams.ca  




Min Sook Lee - Migrant Dreams

Min Sook Lee - Migrant Dreams
Min Sook Lee

In Min Sook Lee’s award-winning documentary film, Migrant Dreams, a group of migrant farm workers dare to resist the systemic oppression and exploitation from their brokers, employers and Canadian government in small-town Ontario. The film exposes the underbelly of the Temporary Foreign Worker Program. Speaking out is the last thing the workers in the documentary can afford to do, but it’s the only thing left to do. 

Migrant Dreams premiered at the Hot Docs International Film Festival in 2016 and has since screened in theatres and festivals around the world, with additional showings on TVO and Al Jazeera (the latter offering global screening through the month of May 2018). In May of last year, the Canadian Association of Journalists recognized Lee for outstanding journalism in the Labour Reporting category; the film also won a Canadian Hillman Prize for Journalism, and in 2018 garnered a Canadian Screen Awards nomination for Best Social Political Documentary. Some of Lee’s other award-winning films are Tiger Spirit, The Real Inglorious Bastards and My Toxic Baby. 

Min Sook Lee - Migrant Dreams
Min Sook Lee - Migrant Dreams

In addition to her practice as a filmmaker, Lee is an assistant professor in the Faculty of Art. “I’ve been doing this for 20 years, so I can share experiences, production tips, approaches to making work and advice on submitting work,” she says. “OCAD U is a unique fulcrum where you have practice and theory together, so I’m able to draw students into a theoretical perspective that’s informed by experience in the field. It’s core to have a space to have a practice and reflect on the role of art in society. It’s embodied learning that becomes alive and acclimated. It’s a great space to learn and teach in.” 

Lee advises young filmmakers and multimedia artists to think about content and not get carried away with technology. She also says the point of being in school is to learn about yourself: “It’s a deeply personal process. Self-knowledge takes some vulnerability and opening up. Be aware that it’s part of the making.” 

At the same time, she acknowledges that critiques and, later, reviews, will always be part of the process. “Anybody can be deeply hurt by critique and I know the feeling. My films get reviewed and I read the negative ones and I still feel that. We make what we’re doing to share with people, but you open up to a whole range of experience. You have to find ways to make it useful, know who you are and what’s important.” 

Find out more: migrantdreams.ca  

Template: 
Inline Image Template