Who is the man behind the most highly controversial, intensely debated topics in modern medicine? In THE PATHOLOGICAL OPTIMIST, director Miranda Bailey brings us a character study of Dr. Andrew Wakefield, one of 13 co-authors of a notorious 1998 paper in the UK medical Journal The Lancet, but who became the very public face of what has come to be known as “The Anti-Vax Movement.” An expat from Britain who currently resides in Austin, Texas, Wakefield allowed Bailey and her team to follow him and his family for five years beginning in 2011 as he fought a defamation battle in the courts against the British Medical Journal and journalist Brian Deer. The results of that case – and the self-reflection, pronouncements, and observations of Wakefield, his legal team, wife, and his children – create a complex and incisive look at one of our era’s most fear-provoking and continuously provocative figures. THE PATHOLOGICAL OPTIMIST takes no sides, instead letting Wakefield and the battles he fought speak for themselves.


The film will be followed by a presentation/discussion from Dr. Andrew Wakefield.


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Andrew Wakefield, MB, BS, Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons

Andrew Wakefield MBBS, is an academic gastroenterologist. He received his medical degree from St. Mary’s Hospital Medical School, London in 1981. He qualified as Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons in 1985 and trained as a gastrointestinal surgeon with a particular interest in inflammatory bowel disease. He was awarded a Wellcome Trust Traveling Fellowship to study small-intestinal transplantation in Toronto. He was made a Fellow of the Royal College of Pathologists in the U.K. in 2001. Wakefield has published over 140 original scientific papers, reviews, and book chapters. He is the director of the renowned film Vaxxed: From Cover-Up to Catastrophe.