"Step," an inspiring documentary chronicling the lives of three high school seniors, won the hearts of Sundance Film Festival this year the moment it premiered. It tells the story Blessin, Tayla, and Cori as they strive to be the first in their families to go to college. Set at The Baltimore Leadership School for Young Women in Baltimore, Maryland, each teen is motivated to finish strong, go to college, and create better lives for themselves. And now, the first trailer is here to wow you.
"Step taught me that if you come together with a group of powerful women the impact will be immense," shares one of the teens during the trailer's voiceover. Throughout the clip, teachers come together to invest in their students' futures. According to the charter school's website, the all-girls school opened in 2009 and focuses on both academics and social emotional learning. Their mission statement speaks to the school's teaching philosophy saying, "BLSYW students are taught to develop a strong sense of self, sisterhood, compassion, and good decision-making." As a prep school, they are committed to sending each of their students to college.
Throughout the documentary, each of the teens balance their home lives, academics, and practices as they prepare for a step competition. "This is way bigger than stepping. It's about not making excuses, making sacrifices, having a positive attitude," one of the teachers states during the trailer.
The standout documentary was directed by Amanda Lipitz, and the rights have since been acquired by Fox Searchlight for approximately $4 million. Part of the deal includes scholarships for the girls involved in Step, as well to the school itself. The filmmaking team “allowed for proceeds from the sale to go towards scholarships for each of the 19 girls on the step team that came to Sundance as well as a generous donation to the school so that it can continue to transform Baltimore one young woman at a time,” Lipitz explained.
Steps is set to appear in theaters this summer.