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Selected Project keyboard_arrow_right Double Jeopardy
Phally Ngoeum
Director
Chandara So
Producer
Production Status
Development / Research
Date of Completion
August 2020
Length
60 minutes
Total Budget
USD 150,000
Financing In Place
USD 50,000
Requested Contribution
USD 100,000
Production Company
Mekong Production
Double Jeopardy
Sophy, a former Khmer Rouge genocide survivor who was granted entry to the United States when he was 3 years old, and his Cambodian-American family face fear and anxieties over the pending deportation of the father.

Sophy was one of the 158,000 Cambodian genocide survivors who gained entry into the United States between 1979 and 1994 after 1.7 million Cambodian people died under the Khmer Rouge regime. At the age of 16, Sophy was accused of drive-by shooting, possession of a firearm and assault and was put into custody in 1997. Having completed his jail term 4 years later, he faced deportation ever since, even though he arrived in America as a child on a refugee status.

Following his incarceration, Sophy embarks on the slow path to rehabilitation, resuming a normal life and even embracing the American dream. He marries Shelly, an American from Missouri. Together for over 18 years now, they have two American-born children: Ivory and Junior. Sophy was a successful bounty hunter, contributing taxes to the state and never getting in trouble with the law again.

The film follows the struggles that Sophy and his family are facing when in September 2017 his life was turned upside down once more. His family received a phone call from a cousin that ICE (U.S Immigration and Customs Enforcement) was searching for Sophy. Fearing that the ICE would tear their family apart, Sophy and Shelly moved to a poor neighborhood in Washington State, giving up everything they own in the process. Sophy’s status remains unclear when he will be deported to a land he has never set foot in. Living life in a limbo, the couple struggles to pay the bills. Special care for Junior, who has autism and needs special education classes, put an extra burden on the family financial situation.

The looming prospect of the police turning up at their door puts a permanent cloud of fear and anxiety over Sophy and his family.