A new documentary follows Vice President Kamala Harris’ life and career up to her inauguration
The South Asian populace across the United States felt a surge of pride upon seeing one of their own, Kamala Devi Harris, being voted vice president last November. In the months since entering the big league, she has proven herself to be a worthy choice, working on important legislation, being an advocate for underrepresented communities, speaking out against racism, and acting as a support system for the Biden administration.
Legacy Distribution, one of many organizations fascinated by her story, is now presenting her inspiring journey to the White House in the documentary feature, “Vice President Kamala Harris: Chase the Dream.”
We spoke to Dana Webber, the executive producer of the documentary, on what it means for Kamala Harris’ story to be told.
“Certainly the first female vice president of the United States is a timely topic,” she says. “But what makes VP Harris even more interesting is her path to the White House. Her story is one that inspires so many people around the world and it was important to us that we captured that in ‘Chase The Dream.’”
The documentary chronicles the vice president’s tale, from her childhood and upbringing, to her time in the California courtrooms.
“It is intended to tell the story of how a little girl from the Bay Area worked her way to the top and continues to push through boundaries,” Webber says.
The documentary begins with snippets of Harris on the campaign trail, as a potential presidential nominee, and as President Biden’s running mate. It also features footage from her iconic speech delivered after her election to the office of vice president as the first Black and Asian-American woman to assume that position. The team relied on hours of archival footage to create this expansive story.
In a production landscape where interviews and direct source accounts are hard to come by, the use of archival footage and news content has become increasingly popular to communicate succinctly and effectively.
“Legacy Distribution commissions a lot of programming for a fabulous production company that has wonderful resources, including all licensed news footage content of any topic one can imagine,” Webber says. “They were an incredible help.”
Of course, while production began a while before the November election, things worked out in Legacy’s favor when the Democratic Party clinched the win. Whether Joe Biden and Kamala Harris won or lost the 2020 election, her story is a fascinating one of perseverance,” explains Webber. “So we began work months prior to the November election, and continued right up to the January inauguration.”
Like with any ambitious project, there were difficulties. But rather than a challenging creation, it was more the case of a challenging subject.
“The biggest challenge, like any living legend, is that the story is constantly evolving. In other words, we will be telling a different story six months from now, than we did six months ago,” Webber says. “At times it made the production feel like we were in a constant race, trying to keep up with what was happening in the world. The way we overcame this challenge was by acknowledging that we can only tell her story up to a certain point.” And that point was her inauguration.
But what of the story of Kamala Harris, the vice president of the United States of America? According to the team at Legacy, the documentation of her story never stopped.
“Vice President Harris’ story is a work in progress,” Webber says, indicating more to come in the exploration.
For Webber, it’s important that we continue to talk about her trajectory. “Regardless of political views, most would agree her story is fascinating and inspirational to all,” she says. “We need that kind of positive, uplifting message more than ever today.”
Given the way Harris has defined her position, that story of positivity could continue for a lot longer.