Admissions Granted

USA | 2024 | 90 min. | Hao Wu, Miao Wang

As white supremacy barrels its way through the United States legal system, witness the landmark Supreme Court case of Students for Fair Admissions v. Harvard that pitted a coalition of Asian American students against anti-Affirmative Action activists.

Co-directors Hao Wu and Miao Wang scheduled to attend.

Affirmative Action in higher education admissions programs was struck down in 2023 by a conservative majority on the U.S. Supreme Court. It will be years before anyone really knows the consequences of that decision. Admissions Granted tackles this hot-button issue head-on and explores what led to the landmark case “Students for Fair Admissions v. Harvard,” in which Asian American plaintiffs went up against Harvard University’s race-conscious admissions program. Opening with interviews of students who applied for Harvard and other Ivy League schools but were rejected for what they see as discriminatory admissions policies, this fascinating documentary outlines the personal impact of these practices. Through news stories and testimonials, it showcases the varying sides of the story and provides important context for why there is this fight in the first place. At front and center are the two opposing sides: those, including Asian Americans, who believe that affirmative action levels the playing field and addresses historic imbalances for underrepresented groups in higher education, versus the anti-affirmative action Asian American activists and student members of Students for Fair Admissions (SFFA), led by 71-year-old conservative lawyer Edward Blum. This topical documentary foregrounds the ways in which Asian Americans have been affected both positively and negatively by Affirmative Action and the wider systemic racism in admissions attitudes and policies that have yet to be effectively addressed.

—Kathleen Mullen

  • Director: Hao Wu, Miao Wang
  • Principal Cast: Edward Blum, Sally Chen, Margaret M. Chin, Jeannie Suk Gersen, Danielle R. Holley
  • Country: USA
  • Year: 2024
  • Running Time: 90 min.
  • Producer: Hao Wu, Miao Wang
  • Cinematographers: Christopher Messina, Jia Li, Brett Wiley
  • Editors: Hao Wu, Jennifer Fineran
  • Music: Tyler Strickland, Christopher Hoyt Knight
  • Filmography: Wang: Maineland (2017), Beijing Taxi (2010); Wu: 76 Days (2020), People‚Äôs Republic of Desire (2018)
  • Language: English
  • US Distributor: MSNBC Films