In 2016, after the deaths of Alton Sterling and Philando Castille, I set out to make a film about police brutality, an issue very close to me. I began crowdfunding the project while writing the script and beginning pre-production. During pre-production, two things befell me; first, a family emergency took me from the project and second, I was told that I had an opportunity to make it into a feature, so I took the time to do so.
In 2017, I shopped the project to multiple production companies, beginning pre-pro in April again before tearing my ACL trying to be Lionel Messi on the the pitch. While recovering, my crew was spread on other projects, giving me more time to rework the script and update the project. Later in the year, I was given multiple opportunities to make a movie that didn’t get to the spirit of my project, so I declined.
In 2018, we finally shot and edited a short version of the film to shop around to companies but the toll of consistently being inundated with the trauma of police violence, both in the media, in my life, and shooting an approximation of it in my film, caught up with me so I stepped back from the project and from public work.
This has been a long journey but I’m excited to finally be able to release something I have had a love-hate relationship with for almost 3 years. I am happy to report that a trailer for hashtag will be released later in July for a late 2019 release.
while you wait, here are hashtag talks, podcasts with different artists where we explore policing.