USC grad's film 'Imperial Dreams' brings South LA to Sundance

Imperial Dreams movie

Sundance Film Festival

A still from the movie "Imperial Dreams."

The Sundance Film Festival is underway in Park City, Utah and one film set to make its worldwide debut Monday is set in Watts.

"Imperial Dreams" is about Bambi, a reformed gang member who's trying to become a writer while providing for his 4-year-old son. 

"A lot of these guys have grown up in the culture there where they had to be hard enough to survive but they're also really sweet, gentle, loving people that take care of their family, and I thought it was a really interesting duality to explore a guy who knew the dark side of himself, but who also really knew the loving side of himself," said USC film school graduate Malik Vitthal, who co-wrote and directed the film.

VIDEO: Vitthal on making 'Imperial Dreams'

"Imperial Dreams" is Vitthal's feature directorial debut. He developed the film with the help of mentors at the 2011 Sundance Screenwriters Lab

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