AMERICAN FACTORY - Full Frame Road Show Winter Series
In 2008 General Motors closed its assembly plant in Dayton, Ohio. More than 2,500 workers lost their jobs. Six years later, Fuyao, a Chinese company manufacturing automobile glass, purchased the plant. The announcement of new owners sparked hope for many residents who had struggled to find jobs after GM shuttered. As Fuyao moved into the U.S. market, its new factory would employ Chinese and American workers.
With astounding access, Steven Bognar and Julia Reichert document the opening of the factory and the years that follow as people from profoundly different cultures work alongside each other. Stunning cinematography moves us through the experiences of workers on the factory floor, supervisors, senior management, and even the Fuyao chairman, Chinese billionaire entrepreneur Cao Dewang, revealing the cultural collision and its consequences. American Factory deftly traverses conflicting perspectives and dramatically unfolding events to illuminate the tensions of globalized industrialization. By weaving multiple personal narratives, the film highlights ways that people can come together and the structures that can keep them apart, making space to consider the gravity of workers' relationships to their livelihoods, and to one another.