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UCLA Film & Television Archive and the Hollywood Foreign Press Association present

Crocodile Conspiracy / Compensation

A woman using sign language.
April 15, 2023 - 7:30 pm
Q&A with filmmaker Zeinabu irene Davis, moderated by Caroline Collins, UC President's Postdoctoral Fellow, UCI Dept. of History.

Admission is free. No advance reservations. Your seat will be assigned to you when you pick up your ticket at the box office. Seats are assigned on a first come, first served basis. The box office opens one hour before the event.

ASL interpretation and captions will be provided for this program.

Restoration world premiere! Restoration funding provided by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association

Crocodile Conspiracy

U.S., 1986

Willa Ledbetter, an African American middle-aged school teacher in Watts, longs to visit her parent’s homeland of Cuba. In the face of political and familial pressure, Willa struggles to make the decision and forgo her dream.

DCP, color, 13 min. Directed: Zeinabu irene Davis. Screenwriter: Zeinabu irene Davis. With: John Earl Jelks, Sandra Sealy.

Restored by the UCLA Film & Television Archive from the 16mm original color A/B negatives and 35/32 optical track negative. Laboratory services by Roundabout Entertainment, Inc., Audio Mechanics. Special thanks to Zeinabu irene Davis.


U.S., 1999

In Zeinabu Irene Davis’ feature debut, two Chicago love stories, both featuring a deaf woman and a hearing man played by the same actors, take place over different decades—one set in the early 20th century, the other in contemporary times. As the stories develop, parallels of hardship, love, politics, ability and communication start to mirror one another, creating a fabric of lived experience that is connected to history. Davis employs sound, song, title cards, archival photos and dance to connect her characters but also the viewer to the medium itself and of Black culture on screen. Remarkable in its vision, Compensation is a bold, original work that vibrates with historical and personal significance today.

16mm, b&w, 90 min. Director: Zeinabu irene Davis. Screenwriter: M. Arthur Chéry. With: John Earl Jelks, Michelle A. Banks, Nirvana Cobb.

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