The Los Angeles Rams and Pepsi, in partnership with Albertsons/Vons/Pavilions, Operation Progress and content creators Shamrock Studio / DLP Media Group, are launching “Fighting For Light, The Concrete Rose,” a short film that tells the inspiring story of amateur boxer Meryland Gonzalez, a 14-year-old Watts Native and nine-time national boxing champion determined to thrive in the face of difficult surroundings.
Meryland grew up in a 500-square-foot apartment in Gonzaque Village, a housing development in Watts, with her parents and two sisters. Currently the No. 1 ranked boxer for her age group in the nation, Meryland is determined to chase her dream of competing in the Olympics and succeeding against all odds. Meryland’s parents both work in a chicken factory and in the face of a pandemic and reduced hours, have struggled to cover the bare essentials, including food for the family.
The film tells the story of a rose growing in Watts, California. A rose that blooms in the most adverse of conditions, but blooms nonetheless. Helping along the way is Operation Progress (OP), a non-profit organization whose mission is to empower underserved youth to become educated, ethical and productive adults who reach their full potential and positively contribute to society. Given the pandemic, OP’s focus right now is on food insecurity. The film follows the Gonzalez family attending a special grocery shopping event along with 70 other families from the community, one of the many ways OP and partner organizations are supporting the community of Watts during this unprecedented time.
Executive Producer: Mike Hughes
Executive Producer: Greg C. Lake
Director / Producer: Matt Schlef
Managing Director: Pete Brown
Associate Producer: Connor Gordon
Director Of Photography: Logan Fulton
Production Manager: Emily Mitchell
Production Coordinator: Maddy Kim
Editor: Jantzen Gianfrancesco
Assistant Editor: Michael Escalante
1st AC: Oscar Martinez
Audio Engineer: Michael Faner
Colorist: Logan Fulton
Audio Mixer: Jonathan Hughes