American Made

Issues of tradition, faith, conformity and sacrifice are confronted when a Sikh American family is stranded in the desert.

Film Signature Image
Independent Lens
Premiere Date
May 9, 2006
30 minutes

Sharat Raju

Sharat's creative work has earned nearly two dozen international awards and continues to entertain audiences throughout the world. He wrote and directed the short film American Made, which aired on PBS's Independent Lens. Sharat produced, directed, and edited the similarly acclaimed Divided We Fall, the first documentary to chronicle the rise in Show more hate-crimes in the immediate aftermath of Sept. 11, 2001. Recently, he was chosen to be a Directing Fellow at ABC Networks and at Film Independent, after graduating with high honors from the American Film Institute. He began his career working for legendary casting director Mali Finn on The Matrix Reloaded, The Matrix Revolutions, 8 Miles, and others. There are no outstanding warrants for his arrest. Show less

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Marcus Cano

Marcus has been making film and television programming, with a special appetite for social interest stories, for more than 10 years. He received an MFA in Film Producing from the American Film Institute, where he worked with writer-director Sharat Raju to make the award-winning short film American Made. Marcus also worked in development at the Show more newsmagazine Dateline NBC and the Mark Gordon Company. Marcus began a successful casting agency in Los Angeles before moving to Georgia, where he is now a digital-filmmaking professor at the Art Institute, Atlanta. Show less

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The Film

Trapped in the middle of the desert on their way to the Grand Canyon, a Sikh American family has only one hope: the remote highway and the occasional car that drives by. American Made confronts issues of tradition, faith, conformity, and sacrifice after the family's youngest son accuses his turban-clad orthodox father of looking like a terrorist while stranded on a remote desert road.