L.A. Times Short Docs Launches with Five Films

la times short docs poster

The new series from L.A. Times Studios is presenting five short documentaries on topics including the environment, social justice, homelessness and immigration available to stream for Times subscribers


The Los Angeles Times has launched L.A. Times Short Docs, an ongoing series of short documentaries by established and emerging independent filmmakers, adding five films to its early 2022 slate. The curated non-fiction shorts feature a range of topics, including the environment, social justice, homelessness and immigration. All films are available for Times subscribers to stream at

As part of The Times’ expansion into the documentary video space, Short Docs will feature films built around visual storytelling designed to provoke conversation on the world’s most important issues. The ongoing series will showcase compelling films that amplify underrepresented voices and foster diversity in the film community.

“We are thrilled to build an inclusive catalog and platform for documentary filmmakers on the West Coast,” said Nani Sahra Walker, director of L.A. Times Short Docs. “The inaugural films reflect themes that underscore The Times’ journalistic mission and connect with our diverse community. Our goal is to build relationships with filmmakers and audiences to start conversations around the films we curate.”


The titles include:

  • “ᎤᏕᏲᏅ (What They’ve Been Taught)” explores expressions of reciprocity in the Cherokee world, brought to life through a story told by an elder and first language speaker. (Director: Brit Hensel; Associate Producers: Keli Gonzales, John Henry Gloyne; Producers: Taylor Hensel, Adam Mazo, Kavi Pillay, Tracy Rector; Production: Nia Tero, Upstander Project. Running time: 9 minutes.)

  • “After Skid Row” documents the journey of Barbie Carter as she navigates the transition to housed life following the brutal reality of a decade on the streets. (Director: Lindsey Hagen; Producers: Dan Riordan, Dana Saint, Lauren Todd, Amelia Rayno; Production: Gnarly Bay. Running time: 22 minutes.)

  • “We Are Like Waves” is an intimate look into how surfing changes Sanu’s life, documenting the struggles and breakthroughs of becoming one of the first female Sri Lankan surfers. (Director: Jordyn Romero; Producers: Leah De Leon, Amanda Prifti, Martina Burtscher, Laurel Tamayo. Running time: 12 minutes.)

  • “innocence.” follows a group of Black and Latina women activists in San Jose, California as they drive a grassroots movement to remove police from their children’s schools. (Directors: Skyler Glover, Goran Zaneti; Producer: Goran Zaneti; Production: Studio 303, Burn A Light Productions. Running time: 21 minutes.)

  • “Victor and Isolina” is an animated short film, featuring 3D printed miniatures of director William D. Caballero’s bickering and boisterous Puerto Rican grandparents. The film is a humorous account of how the elderly couple separated after years of a shaky relationship and cohabitation. (Director: William D. Caballero; Producers: Elaine Del Valle, William D. Caballero. Running time: 6 minutes.)

The newly formed documentary unit under L.A. Times Studios debuted its first title last year with Breakwater Studios’ “The Beauty President,” a short film from executive producer Lena Waithe and director Whitney Skauge. The current slate of films premiered in January with a limited theatrical run at the Laemmle Monica Film Center and will show exclusively on for 30 days. To further spotlight Short Docs, L.A. Times Studios will host live and virtual events with filmmakers in venues across Los Angeles and online.

Follow Short Docs on Instagram @latimesdocs (#latimesdocs), stream the films and learn more at Filmmakers can submit pitches through the online submission form.