Rogue Valley man’s ‘Illegal’ film complete, set for the festival circuit

ASHLAND, Ore.– The film about a Rogue Valley man’s journey to America is being captured in a film produced locally.

NBC5 News first told you about Ashland businessman Laz Ayala’s “Illegal, the Project” a year ago. The documentary is about not only Ayala’s story of coming to the U.S. 38 years ago but the modern stories of undocumented immigrants.

It’s now complete and has been submitted to the renowned South by Southwest and Sundance Film Festival. In total, Ayala and the filmmaker, Nick Alexander, plan to submit the movie to around 170 film festivals including the Ashland Independent Film Festival.

“It provides a unique perspective on the topic of immigration. The perspective of immigrants,” said Alexander. “And people who oftentimes are silenced or their opinion isn’t necessarily received.”

Ayala says the documentary was based on a book, titled the same name, that he’s been working on for some time. He plans to release the book in the next three to five months as the film rolls out at festivals.

“To give a voice to the immigrant story, to humanize the conversation,” said Ayala when asked why he wanted to tell this story. “And to also put a spotlight on some of the myths and facts about immigrants, particularly undocumented immigrants.”

Ayala will speak about his journey and immigration at SOU on November 13 from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m at Susanne Homes Hall.

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