A small town’s segregated past, immigrant future: “Welcome to Shelbyville”

The Sidewalk Film Festival continues with "Welcome to Shelbyville."

A film that chronicles America at a racial and cultural crossroads is next up in a series of independent films presented by UAB’s Alys Stephens Center and the Sidewalk Film Festival.

asc_southartsfilm_shelbyvillehires“Welcome to Shelbyville” chronicles America through the lens of one rural town in the Bible Belt of Tennessee. A stone’s throw from the birthplace of the Ku Klux Klan, the town grapples with its segregated past while navigating the arrival of Latino immigrants and newer Somali refugees, who have come to work in the local chicken plant. Set during the beginnings of the Obama administration, a declining economy and unprecedented demographic shifts, an ensemble cast of colorful, irreverent characters represent life in small town America at a critical time in the country’s history.

The Southern Circuit Independent Film series is designed to expose audiences to the country’s hottest new directors. See the film, then meet the filmmaker Kim Snyder and discuss the work.

The film will screen at 7 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 17, 2011, in UAB’s Alys Stephens Center, 1200 10th Ave. South. Tickets are $10, $8 students. Call 205-975-2787 or visit www.AlysStephens.org.

The 2011-2012 Southern Circuit Tour is a program of South Arts. Southern Circuit screenings are funded in part by a grant from South Arts in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts and local partner organizations. Special support for Southern Circuit was provided by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.