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‘American Cheerleader’ Takes On Stereotypes of the Sport

James Pellerito and David Barba’s documentary American Cheerleader focuses on two rival cheerleading teams leading up to the National High School Cheerleading Championships.

Says Barba about what attracted them to the subject matter, “I think we [realized] that everyone has a pre-conceived notion of what cheerleading is—and we were no different—so we were interested in exploring those notions and seeing if they were true. What we found is that these young women are really disciplined, dedicated, great team members… and cheerleading really helped them get through difficult times in their lives. So we really explored some of those stereotypes that are out there. We also realized that there are not a lot of sports movies that follow women. A lot of the competition sports movies follow hockey or football and it’s a very masculine field. So it appealed to us to bring women athletes to light more in a competition setting.”

Read the full story here on Film Society of Lincoln Center.

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