Her documentary Thornton Dial: Image of the Tiger was broadcast on WNET-TV in New York in February 1994. Together with Susan Pointon, she produced Breaking Silence: The Story of the Sisters at DeSales Heights. Since its completion in 1994, Breaking Silence has been broadcast nationally on VISN Satellite Cable Network and has been selected for screening at several national and international film festivals. It has won a Gold Apple at the National Educational Film and Video Festival in Oakland, CA, a CINE Golden Eagle in Washington, DC, a National Media Owl Award, and was selected for screening at the prestigious Margaret Mead Film Festival in New York. It was chosen Booklist Magazine's 1995 "Top of the List" winner. Tommie recently completed Child of Our Time a 45-minute documentary about a group of high school students' year-long examination of racial and religious oppression, and by extension, tolerance, as they respond artistically to Sir Michael Tippett's poem and music "A Child of Our Time." She recently completed her new feature documentary The Groove is Not Trivial about Scottish fiddler Alasdair Fraser and the global movement for cultural revival.
Films by Tommie Dell Smith
This compelling documentary reveals life behind the cloistered walls of a 150-year-old monastery, as it follows the twelve elderly nuns preparing to face the outside world for the first time in their adult lives. Breaking Silence: The Story of the Sisters at Desales Heights examines the effects on the members of this unusual community as they respond to pressures from the world around them. A rare and intimate insight into a way of life that may soon be gone forever, the film raises important questions about the changing role of women in society and what happens to those whose roles are no longer valued.