On Saturday, January 19, at 7pm, head to the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego’s La Jolla location for the screenings of two locally-produced, autism-related short films, El Abuelo and With Me, followed by a Q&A with filmmakers and educators. The event is open to the public and will benefit The Arch Academy and Tender Loving Canines Assistance Dogs (suggested donation of $12 at the door). Both films were produced by La Jolla-based Drama House Productions.
El Abuelo is the story of Nick, a 12-year-old boy with high-functioning autism, who has retreated into a world of silence. He is fascinated, however, with the old man who sells flowers and oranges on a Del Mar street corner. To meet him, Nick journeys to a remote canyon where immigrant workers live in a squatter’s camp. It is there that Nick finds el abuelo, the grandfather, and in doing so reclaims his voice. Written by San Diego playwright/screenwriter/Old Globe associate artist Stephen Metcalfe (Jacknife, Cousins, Pretty Woman), El Abuelo was directed by SDSU graduate Stephen Crutchfield and received the 2012 San Diego Latino Film Festival Award for Best Local Film.
With Me is the journey of Henry, a 15-year-old autistic teen in need of a friend, Mully, a yellow lab who is looking for a boy, and the heartwarming story of their friendship and the world they discover together. Henry is played by La Jolla resident, Wesley Metcalfe. The film was directed by Dave Florek and Patrick Scott and filmed in conjunction with Tender Loving Canines Assistance Dogs. (www.mcasd.org)