Executive Producer Shari Eberts
We Hear You (WHY) announced that Miami—We Hear You was named “Best Film on Disability” in the June 2021 Monthly Awards of the Cannes World Film Festival. As a monthly winner, the film is automatically entered in the Annual Competition for a chance to become a Grand Winner and be screened in Cannes during the festival’s annual Award Ceremony in 2022. Earlier this summer, We Hear You was named an Official Selection of the Montreal Independent Film Festival and The IndieFEST Film Awards.
We Hear You was conceived, filmed, and directed across two continents, all during the COVID-19 pandemic. The film features four women with hearing loss, each navigating stigmas, setbacks, and successes as they strive to live well despite the challenges of hearing loss.
In September, HLAA will host a screening and talkback with the filmmakers. Details to come.
When you have hearing loss, conversation is like a game of Wheel of Fortune. Some of the letters are blank. Others are filled in. People with hearing loss take these incomplete sounds and put them into words or phrases that make sense in the context of the conversation. It doesn’t always work, leaving us isolated and alone. The pandemic made this worse, as masks took away our superpower — lipreading. We struggle to fit into the hearing world, yet there is a silver lining — meeting one another.
We Hear You shines a light on the hearing loss experience. It shows a more inclusive world — one that is built for us too. It shatters stigmas of hearing loss that linger, even in our own community. It highlights the ways people with hearing loss rise to advocate and build a better world for us all. We Hear You. Now Hear Us.
Watch the trailer at we-hearyou.com.
Shari Eberts. She grew up watching her father struggle with his own hearing loss. Stigmatized, he never asked anyone to repeat or speak louder. She vowed she would face her own hearing loss differently, and she has.
Holly Cohen. She was in her early 20s when she was diagnosed with hearing loss. She lived in denial for 10 years, until one work meeting when she could not follow the discussion. Wearing hearing aids changed her life. Loss has formed her, not defined her.
Toni Iaccolucci. She lives in the hearing world, but due to a profound hearing loss she does not hear enough to discern speech. She lipreads very well, except for the one time it mattered most.
Roxana Rotundo. She began losing her hearing when she moved to the United States from Venezuela to start her own film and TV distribution company. Hearing aids worked, then didn’t. Cochlear implants allowed her to re-engage with her business and her life.
Executive Producer: Rotundo is the CEO of VIP 2000 TV, a film and content distribution company whose catalog includes more than 300 films and 3,000 hours of series. Rotundo is the Board Chair for the Worldwide Audiovisual Women’s Association (WAWA), a nonprofit dedicated to connecting women in the audiovisual industry. She serves on the Board of Directors of HLAA and is a member of the International Academy of Television Arts & Sciences.
Executive Producer: Eberts is a nationally recognized hearing health advocate and the founder of LivingWithHearingLoss.com, a blog and online community for people living with hearing loss and tinnitus. Shari has an adult-onset genetic hearing loss and hopes that by sharing her story she will help others to live more peacefully with their own hearing issues. She serves on the Board of Directors of HLAA.
Executive Producer: Cohen is a hearing health advocate and speaker who was diagnosed with bilateral hearing loss in her 20s. Building on her experience as Past President of the HLAA- New York City Chapter (HLAA-NYC), CEO of a small business, and over 25 years as a career coach, Cohen is committed to empowering others to advocate for their hearing needs. She serves on the Boards of HLAA-NYC and Theatre Development Fund (TDF).
We Hear You (WHY) is a content and communications venture owned and operated by three women with hearing loss. By shining a light on the hearing loss experience, WHY strives to build awareness, community, and a more inclusive word for us all. Ten percent of profits are donated to hearing loss charities. Learn more at we-hearyou.com. #WeHearYou