Short film highlights battle against cancer

El Centro, Calif. – How do you say goodbye to your child, or explain that something, out of your hands, will take you away forever? Local filmmaker Rojian Lira shows in his 6-minute movie MAKE IT COUNT that you do it in a letter.
Lira explained, “It’s a story about a mom who is already seeing the end of her life, battling cancer. So she’s writing this letter to her daughter, wishing her well in the future.”

Having survived cancer himself – and meeting many more challenged by the illness at his job at Pioneer’s Hospital – Lira wanted to highlight in his short film the battle against cancer.

“I deal with a lot of people that have cancer. I have personal friends that have cancer. I myself had cancer last year. It was taken out. I’m completely free now of cancer. So cancer has always been a part of me. That was enough motivation for me to make a story,” Lira said.

Diana Peacherd, of the Cancer Research Center of the Desert, says it’s work like this that informs people of the reality of this disease.

“In Imperial County we have about six hundred new cases expected in 2015. That involves all cancers. Certainly the most prevalent cancer in Imperial County, as well as across the United States, is breast cancer,” Peachard said.
Lira shot the whole film in Brawley. It premiered Saturday, September 19, 2015, at the City of Imperial recreation center. He says it took two years and cost him about $15,000 – but it was all worth it.

Lira concluded, “I always vow to make movies that matter, movies that have positive messages, or a message of some sort that would have a positive contribution to our community.”

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