January 27, 2015
For Immediate Release:
Contact: Jessica Rustad
(402) 472-8607, jkinser@netad.unl.edu

My Louisiana Love Tackles the Continuing Cycle of 
Social and Economic Injustice in Louisiana's Fragile Wetlands
Distributed by American Public Television on Sunday, April 5

Monique Verdin (Houma) with camera by the Mississippi River Gulf Outlet in Violet, Louisiana.  Photo by Andy Cook. 
Lincoln, Neb:  My Louisiana Love first began when Monique Verdin (Houma) and her boyfriend, Mark Krasnoff, started recording Monique's Native American relatives in southeast Louisiana. Hoping to capture the Houma Indian's struggle to live in bayou communities plagued with environmental injustice, they filmed eroding wetlands and interviewed Native elders. Their documentation quickly shifted after Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans, leaving Mark and Monique facing their own personal struggles in the aftermath's apocalyptic reality--only to be followed by more devastation to the Gulf Coast with Hurricane Rita and the BP oil leak.

"I want to keep living on our land--but I'm inheriting a dying delta," exclaimed Verdin, who is also the film's co-producer/co-writer along with director Sharon Linezo Hong.

The Houma Tribe is one of the largest Native American tribes in North America with a population of about 17,000. The Tribe is recognized by the state of Louisiana but not by the federal government. There are six service areas of the United Houma Nation and most of the communities in this area are located outside risk-reduction levees with decaying marshlands to the south as their only buffer against storm-surge floodwaters. South Louisiana has lost over 1,883 square miles from 1932 to 2010--a land mass greater than the state of Rhode Island.

The Houma people have thrived through farming, fishing, and hunting game. This lifestyle has been severely threatened by a combination of both manmade and natural disasters. As the film progresses, we learn more about how the land is being changed by man's endless efforts for "progress"--witnessing the impact of the oil and gas industry, manipulation of the waterways, and other influences that are hurting the fragile environment.

"We hope My Louisiana Love will help the Houma people find a seat at decision-making tables, and give a face to the dire need for a long-term balance between industrial development and preservation of Indigenous cultures and the environment," explained Hong.

To watch the film's trailer, visit visionmakermedia.org/films/my-louisiana-love. My Louisiana Love is distributed by American Public Television (APT) and will be available to Public Television stations nationwide Sunday, April 5, 2015. For broadcast information in your area, please visit pbs.org/stations.
American Public Television (APT) has been a leading distributor of high-quality, top-rated programming to the nation's public television stations since 1961. In 2014, APT distributed one-third of the top 100 highest-rated public television titles in the U.S. Among its 300 new program titles per year, APT programs include prominent documentaries, news and current affairs programs, dramas, how-to programs, children's series and classic movies. America's Test Kitchen From Cook's Illustrated, Rick Steves' Europe, Live From the Artists Den, Doc Martin, Nightly Business Report, Midsomer Murders, Vera, NHK Newsline, Lidia's Kitchen, Globe Trekker, Simply Ming, and P. Allen Smith's Garden Home join numerous documentaries and performance programs popular with public television viewers. APT licenses programs internationally through its APT Worldwide service. Now in its 10th year, Create® TV--featuring the best of public television's lifestyle programming--is distributed by APT. APT also distributes WORLD™, public television's premier news, science and documentary channel. To find out more about APT's programs and services, visit APTonline.org.

Vision Maker Media, a nonprofit 501(c)(3) which receives major funding from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, shares Native stories with the world by advancing media that represents the experiences, values, and cultures of American Indians and Alaska Natives. Founded in 1977, Vision Maker Media is your premier source for quality Native American and Pacific Islander educational and home videos. All aspects of our programs encourage the involvement of young people to learn more about careers in the media--to be the next generation of storytellers. www.visionmakermedia.org.

Additional Information Regarding My Louisiana Love:


Broadcast Distributor/Feed Date/NOLA: APT  |  Sunday, April 5, 2015  |  13:00-14:00 ET/ SD05  |  LOLO

Run time: 56:46

Credits: A film by Sharon Linezo Hong & Monique Verdin (Houma)

My Louisiana Love is a co-production of Within A Sense, LLC and Vision Maker Media.
Funding for My Louisiana Love:

Major funding provided by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and Vision Maker Media.

Press Kit available online at: http://www.visionmakermedia.org/films/my-louisiana-love

Listen to the filmmaker interview online at:


Broadcast History:

Previously televised in the U.S. on WORLD. Two-year exclusive for the series AmericaReFramedTerm: November 11, 2012 - November 20, 2014.

Crew Bios:


Sharon Linezo Hong
is an independent documentary filmmaker based in Cambridge, Mass. Sharon experientially learned filmmaking through her five-years of directing, producing, and co-writing My Louisiana Love, her first full-length documentary. Sharon's mentors and advisors for her film include Julie Mallozzi, Fernanda Rossi, Robb Moss, and Judith Helfand. Sharon augmented this learning experience by taking classes on film theory and technical training at Massachusetts College of Art and Design. My Louisiana Love has been screening at festivals, museums, and universities, and will be broadcasted on Public Television (2012). Sharon founded Within A Sense, LLC, an independent production company aspiring to create portrait documentaries reflecting on social and environmental issues through personal perspective.



Monique Michelle Verdin is a native daughter of southeast Louisiana. Her intimate documentation of the Mississippi River Deltas' indigenous Houma Nation exposes the complex interconnectedness of environment, economics, culture, climate, and change. Her photography has been exhibited nationally and internationally, and is included in The Good Pirates of the Forgotten Bayous, Yale University Press (2008) and Nonesuch Records' Habitat for Humanity benefit album Our New Orleans (2005). She received her Bachelor's degree in Mass Communications at Loyola University in New Orleans. My Louisiana Love (2012) is her first documentary film.



Julie Mallozzi is an independent documentary filmmaker whose work explores the fluidity of cultural identity and historical memory. Julie's films have been supported by Sundance Documentary Fund, ITVS, the Center for Asian American Media (CAAM), LEF Foundation and Humanities Foundations. Her recent film Monkey Dance screened at festivals around the world and was broadcast nationally on Public Television in 2006. Julie has served as a consultant and editor for several films, including editing Ross McElwee's In Paraguay. She received her BA from Harvard University and her MFA from San Francisco Art Institute. Julie has taught filmmaking at Harvard University, Massachusetts College of Art and Design and Boston University.


ORIGINAL MUSIC, Alex Weinstein 


ADVISOR, Robb Moss




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