It’s the first-time a film has been shown at the Fisher Theatre in more than 30 years, and that film is about the city in which it stands: Detroit.
Tonight marks the debate of, “The United States of Detroit,” in Michigan. The documentary focuses on the resilience of Detroit’s neighborhoods, while telling the story of it’s past. According to those who know the film best, it also looks ahead to the possibilities.
Pastor Barry Randolph is a key contributor to the film. He took over the Church of the Messiah nearly decade ago when it was ready to shut it’s doors — now it’s overseeing more than 100 rental properties, hosts marching band practices, and works as a community partner for everything between affordable internet and computer classes.
“The people of the inner city are just as valuable,” said Pastor Randolph. “It’s just the odds are against them.”
Randolph is hoping that the film showcases a forgotten part of Detroit, the part that hasn’t seen the same interest as downtown Detroit which has recently seen a surge in investment.
“We’re not looking for somebody to come save us,” said Pastor Randolph. “We’re looking to do it ourselves. The thing is, it takes everybody. It would be easier if everyone said, ‘Let’s invest in a circumstance or situation is working,’ but if they don’t we’ll do it ourselves.”
The premiere of “United States of Detroit” may be a bit of fuel for change. Aside from putting a spotlight on the often voiceless parts of Detroit, it also serves as a fundraiser. Wednesday night’s premiere and roundtable discussion is a fundraiser for BLVD Harambe - an organization that provides programs featured in the film.
Emmy-award winning journalists Soledad O’Brien and Miles O'Brien will also be on-hand for the event. The pair will be hosting the roundtable discussion with a number of people involved in the film.
Tickets are being sold for $10 apiece online through Ticketmaster. If you want to check for availability or book a ticket you can still do so online: https://unitedsdetroit.splashthat.com
Doors open at 5:30 p.m. The show begins at 6 p.m.