Our Vision

When you’re born on land your ancestors stole, can you live here with integrity? In the Wake of Our Ancestors (95 minutes) follows filmmaker Angela Watrous and her aging father on a cross-country reckoning with their 400-year history of settler-colonizer ancestry.

From the California home their family could only legally buy in 1951 because they were “wholly white,” to the Santa Fe Trail junction in New Mexico renamed for their virulently anti-Native grandfather, to the Connecticut site of the genocidal 1637 Pequot Massacre enacted by eighty Englishmen including their ancestor—they learn their people’s harm and their resulting responsibilities today.

In the Wake of Our Ancestors tells the story of the Watrous grandfathers whose active roles in establishing and expanding the United States leave cascading violence in their wake—creating the template for genocide against indigenous people, contributing to the enslavement of Native and African people, and repeatedly imploding in family violence.

In the Wake of Our Ancestors’ first intensive round of production happened in summer of 2022. The second round of filming in California, Oklahoma, and Connecticut is awaiting funding and slated to begin in January 2024. We’re aiming for a premier of 2025.