Back in August, Planned Parenthood released a new manifesto called Unstoppable. With eight tenets, from "Our bodies are our own," to "We reject racism, sexism, ableism, homophobia, and transphobia," the project was meant to re-inspire the fight for reproductive rights and healthcare in the United States.
Today, the nonprofit released three videos of their 10-video collection from a variety of filmmakers, each inspired by the manifesto. "We wanted to really illuminate the many ways in which Planned Parenthood impacts our lives," Tanya Selvaratnam, executive producer of Unstoppable Art, tells Refinery29 in a phone interview.
The third video in the series is released exclusively on Refinery29 from filmmaker Stephanie Wang-Breal. She decided to create a visual anthem showcasing individuals overcoming stereotypes and misconceptions in "I Told Them."
"My first inspiration was my daughter, who is featured in the piece," Wang-Breal says. "I see how free she is, how unencumbered by her gender, how fearless she is. People are always like, you should reign her in, you should watch what she's doing, but it's beautiful and I don't want to contain it."
Wang-Breal wanted to illuminate the seemingly inconsequential cultural expectations placed on women, their bodies, and their capabilities. "There are so many social constructs around those things that my peers and contemporaries are still grappling with, not just for women and girls, but for everyone, simply based on our gender, race, or sexuality," she says. The ultimate message she hopes to convey is one of perseverance despite those preconceptions.
"I make dark films, really hardcore social justice films, but in this case I wanted to do something that was inspiring, something that felt hopeful," Wang-Breal says. "I do feel like we need that right now. To say, we are here to stay, and together we're going to keep fighting and getting stuff done. We have to. We absolutely have to."