In 1970s San Francisco, 20-year-old Korean immigrant Chol Soo Lee is racially profiled and convicted of a Chinatown gang murder. Sentenced to life, he spends years fighting to survive until investigative journalist K.W. Lee takes a special interest in his case, igniting an unprecedented push for social action that would unite Asian Americans and inspire a new generation of activists.
Nearly five decades later, award-winning journalists Julie Ha and Eugene Yi excavate this largely unknown yet essential history in their riveting Sundance selection Free Chol Soo Lee. Combining rich archival footage, firsthand accounts, and narration drawn from personal writings, this poignant documentary paints an intimate portrait of the complex man at the center of a movement and serves as an urgent reminder that his legacy is more relevant than ever.
Join the Korea Economic Institute (KEI), the Center for Korean Legal Studies at Columbia Law School (CKLS) the Weatherhead East Asia Institute (WEAI), and China and the World Program at Columbia University (CWP) for a special screening followed by a Q&A with directors Eugene Yi and Julie Ha.