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FEATURE DOCUMENTARY 108 Minutes World Premiere
As the new millennium began, one news story captured the attention and hearts of nearly every American. On Thanksgiving 1999, a young Cuban boy named Elián González was found floating in the Florida Straits by himself after his mother drowned trying to seek refuge in the United States. Before long, the 5-year-old González became the centerpiece of an intense custody battle between his father back in Cuba and his relatives in Miami, which, in turn, brought attention to the long-brewing tensions between Fidel Castro’s Cuba and the U.S. Throughout the news coverage, though, one voice was too young to join the heated international conversation: that of Elián himself. Eighteen years later, in the wake of Fidel Castro’s monumental death last November, ELIÁN lets the now 23-year-old tell his story, along with the other key players, of one of the biggest news events in modern times. Executive produced by Alex Gibney, Tim Golden and Ross McDonnell use Elián’s intimate details as the jumping-off point for a powerfully relevant historical account.

—Matt Barone
Documentary, First Time Filmmaker
About the Director(s)
Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative journalist, Tim Golden has covered Cuba from Havana, Washington and Miami during a 20-year career at The New York Times. Twice nominated for an Irish Film and Television Award, Ross McDonnell’s work has screened at festivals around the world. His first documentary Colony won the First Appearance Award at IDFA in Amsterdam.

Film Info
Cast & Credits
  • Director:
    Tim Golden, Ross McDonnell
  • Screenwriter:
    Tim Golden
  • Cinematographer:
    Ross McDonnell
  • Editor:
    Michael J. Palmer, Hannah Vanderlan
  • Composer:
    McKenzie Stubbert
  • Executive Producer:
    Alex Gibney, Amy Entelis (CNN Films), Kate Townsend (BBC Storyville), Mary Callery (Irish Film Board), Andrew Reid (Northern Ireland Screen), Greg Phillips (Content Media), Jonathan Ford (Content Media), Maiken Baird, Brendan J. Byrne, Richard Perello, Stacey Offman
  • Producer:
    Trevor Birney
  • Associate Producer:
    Oisín Kearney
  • Co-Producer:
    Erin Edeiken
  • Line Producer:
    Jenny Kubo
  • Financiers:
    CNN, Content Media, Northern Ireland Screen, the Irish Film Board and The Silver Fund
  • Production Companies:
    Fine Point Films, Jigsaw Productions



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