Over 100 DATA students, DATA counselor Deborah Applebaum, and DATA teachers Matt Hamilton, Matt Cauthron and Rose Gonzalez attended the first two films screened at the Palm Springs International Film Festival Jan. 7, 2008. The students saw “Blessed is the Match, The Life and Death of Hannah Senesh", and “The Black Balloon.”
The event was held at the Palm Springs High School Theater and included students from Palm Springs High School, Indio High School, Desert Hot Springs High School, Palm Desert High School, and La Quinta High School.
Before viewing the films, the students heard from author/filmmaker James Parkinson, a Palm Desert resident, who wrote “Soldier Slaves,” a book that was made into a film by Parkinson and documentary filmmaker Ashley Karras. Free copies of the book were given to each student who attended he screening. Lunch for the students was hosted by Chipotle.