Creating A New Path For Hiring Black Creative Talent
I Am My Ancestor’s Wildest Dreams is an Official Selection of the San Francisco Black Film Festival
The career path for black creative talent has always been a struggle. Opportunities to be yourself and share your voice are frankly far and few between, and barriers are often put up to keep us from finding the courage to be our authentic selves and tell our own stories.
Too often black filmmakers are met with both conscious and unconscious bias in our industry, or alternatively given only a brief moment to shine in order to satisfy a Diversity & Inclusion quota. We constantly have to work harder to get noticed, and are often told to tone down our blackness if we ever want to really make it.
Navigating this barrier to the creative job market led us to create I Am My Ancestors’ Wildest Dreams, an 8-minute documentary that ran during Black History Month in February 2021. Our narrative gave black creatives a safe space to talk openly about their accomplishments, remind themselves of their creative self-worth and take a pause to recognize how far they’ve really come.
Our unscripted format put everything on the table, and gave our group of young aspiring filmmakers a platform to get honest, be raw and really share their truths. We had an open and honest dialogue about their paths to self-discovery, with hopes of inspiring others to find the courage to speak up and follow their own dreams. When the documentary ran on social media during the last week of Black History Month, it was among our top 3 posts on both facebook and Instagram.
The documentary was a Koi-Fly team effort, led by Director Kyra Knox and produced within just a few days during Covid quarantine in early 2021. I Am My Ancestors’ Wildest Dreams has also been recognized as an Official Selection at the 2021 San Francisco Black Film Festival.
Executive Producer: Stacey Grant
Producer/Director: Kyra Knox
Producer: Leslie Schmidt
Director of Photography: Hector Tapia
Associate Producer: Erin Versaggi
Associate Producer/Color Correction: Sam Meneses
Assistant Camera: Ray Ermel
Photographer/ Production Assistant: Brendan Chaplin
Production Assistant: Michaela Keating
Editor: Justina Luongo
Director of Production: David Bisson
Interviewee: Tyler Jones
Interviewee: Maya Imani
Interviewee: Ja’Nell Hall-Ragin
Interviewee: Brendan Chaplin