Obama-backed ‘American Factory’ wins Best Documentary Oscar

LOS ANGELES: The Oscar for best feature-length documentary went to American Factory, the first documentary released by Barack and Michelle Obama’s production company.
The Netflix film is about an Ohio auto glass factory that is run by a Chinese investor. It explores many issues, including the rights of workers, globalisation, and automation.
American Factory beat out Honeyland, The Cave, The Edge of Democracy and For Sama. Steven Bognar and Julia Reichert, directors of American Factory acknowledged the work of their fellow nominees. “We are inspired by you guys,” said Reichert.

The film is about the Fuyao plant, bought by Chinese industrialist Cao Dewang, which employs some 2,200 American and 200 Chinese workers. The film gives a close-up look at how the two cultures adjust to one another. Tensions rise when the factory doesn’t initially meet production goals, culminating in a bitter fight over the right to unionise.
“Working people have it harder and harder these days,” said Reichert urging workers to fight back by uniting. The name of the Obamas’ company, Higher Ground, flashes by in the opening credits, but the Obamas themselves aren’t mentioned anywhere neither is President Donald Trump.
When the film received an Oscar nomination in January, the former president tweeted: “It’s the kind of story we don’t see often enough and it’s exactly what Michelle and I hope to achieve with Higher Ground. Congrats to the incredible filmmakers and entire team!”
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