In Production


Directed by Kelly Duane de la Vega and Katie Galloway
Produced by Ariella Ben-Dov, Kelly Duane de la Vega, and Katie Galloway

At a moment of national reckoning on mass incarceration, what can California’s experiment teach the nation?

In 2012, California voters amended the state’s Three Strikes Law – one of the harshest criminal sentencing laws in the nation. The landmark passage of Proposition 36 constituted the first time in history that U.S. citizens voted to shorten sentences of the currently incarcerated. Within days, the reintegration of thousands of “lifers” – men and women once expecting to die in prison – was underway. Shot in immersive verite, THE RETURN weaves together narratives of characters on the front lines of this unprecedented shift: prisoners suddenly freed, families reunited, attorneys and judges wrestling with an untested law, and reentry providers negotiating unfathomable transitions. Taken together, these stories yield an illuminating meta-narrative of an unfolding and historic reform, exploring what it can teach a nation reckoning with mass incarceration.

THE RETURN is supported by Chicken & Egg Pictures, The Fledgling Fund and Cal Humanities.

Release Date: 2016 

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