Barack and Michelle Obama's Higher Ground Production company has made its mark with these three compelling films – Rustin, Leave the World Behind, and American Symphony
Oppenheimer, Barack Obama, Rustin
Barack Obama, the 44th president of the US, recently unveiled his curated selections for the year's most captivating movies. In a tweet he stated, “Here are some films that reflect their hard work over the last year — including some like Rustin, American Symphony, and Leave the World Behind that we were proud to release through.”
Not only did he share his favourite movies before the year ends, he also remembered the SAG-AFTRA strike, which began in July and ended in November 2023. With Hollywood in turmoil, SAG-AFTRA members took a resolute stand, demanding better pay, decent working conditions, and contracts adapted to the age of AI. Among their chief concerns was the shrinking pool of residual payments, a vital source of income for many performers.
Higher Ground's films
Barack Obama and his wife Michelle Obama founded their Higher Ground Production company in 2018, and they made their debut with American Factory in 2019. Later the company made its OTT debut with Becoming in 2020 on Netflix. This year, Higher Ground has produced back-to-back three films – Rustin, Leave the World Behind, American Symphony, and once again all three of them released on Netflix.
Following a long-standing tradition, Barack Obama has dropped the list of his favourite films of the year. The list has thirteen films including:
Leave the World Behind
Anatomy of a Fall, Monster
A Thousand and One
While Rustin, American Symphony, and The Holdovers premiered at the 50th Telluride Film Festival; Leave the World Behind had its world premiere at the 37th AFI Festival; BlackBerry premiered at the 73rd Berlin International Film Festival; Oppenheimer premiered at Le Grand Rex in Paris; American Fiction premiered at the 48th Toronto International Film Festival; Anatomy of a Fall and Monster had its world premiere at the 76th Cannes Film Festival; Past Lives, Polite Society and A Thousand and One had its world premiere at the 2nd Sundance Film Festival this year.