The Why / by Shanae Jones

The most popular question that I have received from the film subjects, colleagues in the industry, and everyone I tell about the movie is, "Why are you doing this?"

I figure, you must be wondering the same thing: why would anyone make a movie about battle rap? So, here are 10 (out of a couple hundred) reasons why we're making HEAVY HITTERS:

To:

  1. Change the narrative of Black men on screen in America. Let's face it, Black men don't get a good rep and a good reason for that is the ignorant stereotypes shown on screen regularly.
  2. Show the true experiences of Black men. Maybe some of the stereotypes may have some validity, but do we know why they're true? HEAVY HITTERS aims to clear that up.
  3. Find out how the Black men in the DC area feel about the socio-economic changes occurring in the city and what they hope their work as battle rappers will mean to the city.
  4. Give the men in the film a platform to show how they correct past mistakes and set themselves on the right path towards fulfilling their dreams. Because someone should show Black men making a positive effort, right?
  5. Relate to Black men in a new way that acknowledges their vulnerability without making them appear weak.
  6. Promote unity between Black men and women by bridging the gap to show that we're not very different in our desires or our motivations. The film aims to bring to the forefront some serious questions that will lead to healthy discussion about Black relationships. Understanding one another is essential to Black empowerment. 
  7. Tell a new story about Black men, hope, change, and redemption (without the typical white savior). 
  8. Get socio-political commentary on major issues affecting the Black community from an often ignored group.
  9.  Add Black women in the role of producer and director because...diversity?
  10. Celebrate Hip-Hop music and the power of spoken word.

All clear? If not, email me.