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BLACK IS BLUE---a new short film by Cheryl Dunye's video poster
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BLACK IS BLUE-- A Black Transman security guard struggles with his identity after meeting an ex-lover from his past. Read more

Oakland, CA Shorts
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This project was successfully funded on September 7, 2013.

BLACK IS BLUE-- A Black Transman security guard struggles with his identity after meeting an ex-lover from his past.

Oakland, CA Shorts
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About this project

LAST WEEK!!! THANK YOU

THANK YOU, to everyone who facebooked, tweeted, retweeted, emailed, pledged $1, pledged $50, or pledged $500. I am going to do everything I can to make BLACK IS BLUE a great film for all who worked on the film, appear(ed) in the film and watch the film.

2 new goals for the final days!

#1 We'd like to get to 300+ backers - please encourage anyone new to give – even $1 would be awesome! We want to build upon the level of support you've already demonstrated and make BLACK IS BLUE reflect a community engaged in trans visibility both on and off the screen. 

#2 We’d like to get to $15,000 so that we can compensate those who worked on the film, fund the next stage of production and fund all the post production work that we will do.

 2 New ON SCREEN Awards Added!! 

CAMEO REWARD: For those of you who like to perform, a $100 donation will guarantee you a cameo role in the film. That's right, your donation not only goes to the creation of an important film about transvisibility, it also makes you visible too. What an awesome way to truly be a part of BLACK IS BLUE

DUNYEMENTARY AWARD: For those of you who are fans of my cinema, you know that I weave real talking head interviews through my projects (The Watermelon Woman, The Owls) I call it the “dunyementary”. It’s a layer of my filmmaking that gives actors, activist and collaborators screen time to share with audience their truth. For BLACK IS BLUE the emphasis is about race, trans-indentities, and the media. So if you have something you’d like to contribute to this discussion, a $500 donation guarantees you’ll be a part of it. There are rewards available for everyone, so if you can’t make it to town to be in the movie, there are still many great ways for you to donate, contribute and participate. 

KINGSTON AND CHERYL

Why Kickstarter?

As an artist I explore the intersection of race, class and sexuality in storytelling and integrate them into a variety of film and digital media projects and productions. My work alternates between feature length narratives (Stranger Inside, My Baby’s Daddy) and those projects that investigate racism, gender dynamics and body language performed in them (The Watermelon Woman, The Owls). I am focused on the creation of "cinema" --a body of work --that falls outside of the commercial filmmaking world. This is why I’m using Kickstarter---because it allows me to extend this cinematic exploration into the realm of funding for the creation of my new film Black Is Blue.

What we are asking for

The initial production for Black Is Blue was financed out of pocket and the entire production team and cast worked for reduced or deferred rates. We are currently seeking funding to do our final 2 days of shooting in Oakland, as well as the production of a mockumentary introductory sequence and a short animated sequence; followed by the picture and sound edit, music scoring and rights, and finally the production of the final exhibition master.

We are hoping that the Black Is Blue Kickstarter campaign will bring in $15,000 (or more) as we pursue grants and other funding sources to finish the film by late fall 2013/early 2014.

Why make Black Is Blue?

20+ years ago I began my work in the media arts as a filmmaker with three short films, She Don't Fade, The Potluck and the Passionand Greetings From Africa. These projects gained international acclaim and success for their positive and empowering representation of black lesbian identities. And after my recent move to the Bay, I find myself at the crossroads of another personal and political discovery with the vibrant black transmale and masculine of center communities that lack visibility within queer media and cultural production. Inspired by the work of the Brown Boi Project, the writings of Dr. Kortney Ryan Ziegler, and a handful of others, I created Black Is Blue as a short film exploring the everyday racism and transphobic experiences in the lives of these black men. For me the short film format is one that provides an artistic space for me to work within a community developing ties for collaboration on projects in the future. It also functions as a small scale take on a possible feature film.

We CAN finish this film with your SUPPORT!

This Kickstarter will move Black Is Blue to completion. Once released we will submit it to national and international film markets and festivals. My previous projects have premiered at Sundance, Berlin, Toronto and hundreds of film festivals, classrooms, museums and movie theaters across the globe. My films have garnered me a Teddy Award at the Berlinale International Film Festival Berlin, best feature in L.A.’s OutFest, Italy’s Torino GLBT Film Festival, and France’s Creteil Film Festival; inclusion in the prestigious Whitney Biennial and an Independent Spirit Award nomination for best director in 2002 . I am certain that Black Is Blue will achieve similar success.

Thank you for your support and assistance with making Black Is Blue.

Black Is Blue Synopsis

BLACK, a 30 something black FTM, on his way to his night shift as a security guard job at a posh Oakland condo, sees several Black Butches and Studs pull up in front of the building unloading party supplies and all the hot babes that go with them. On closer inspection he notices that one of the cuties is DEJA the lover he dumped before his transition. Confused by the sighting he trades shifts with one of the other guards to patrol the building of the party. As his watch unfolds he becomes more restless and paranoid and wonders if Deja has come to out him. When a woman neighbor in the building complains to Black about the noise from the party, he makes his way to the apartment. Wanting to keep his identity a secret and fearful about seeing Deja, he enters and is shocked to see Deja drunk and in bed with several women as TIA her Stud lover films them. Black rushes out but Deja sees him. He takes refuge in the building’s gym and hides out for a while. Serene, moonlit skies inspire Black to exit. Coincidentally it’s the same time that the partygoers filter out and Black comes face to face with Deja. She calls him by his former name, BLUE, and starts to rage at him, which, of course, draws a crowd of on lookers. Fearful that she might say more Black grabs her and a fight ensues between Black and Deja’s Stud-lover. Within moments the other building security guards are on the scene to break up the fight. They are about to call the police but Black won’t let them. And as everyone scatters, Black, not wanting the secret of his former gender to be revealed, walks away into the night.

Cast and Crew

Anya de Montigny--Producer and Casting Director
Yvie Raj--Producer, 1st AD
Cheryl Dunye--Writer, Director, Producer
Kevin Lawrence--Director of Photography
Kingston Farady--Black
Lisa Evan--Deja

Links to our Supporters (more to come!)

San Francisco Film Society, California College of the Arts, World Ground Cafe, Sierra Market in Jack London Square

Check back for weekly updates !

We are busy making the film and will update you on our progress. 


Risks and challenges

Please note that all contributions to our Kickstarter Campaign are non-refundable. You understand that the we are raising funds for Black Is Blue and will disperse all goods after project funds have been raised. You acknowledge that we will use these funds to release the film in 2014. We reserve the right not to promote any sponsored donations, content, or material that is deemed offensive to the integrity and aesthetics of this production.

We THANK YOU so much for your support. Please share our Kickstarter Page via email, tweet, Facebook, blogs, and with everyone that you know.

Keep checking back for rewards and updates. xo Cheryl

Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

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Rewards

  • You selected
    Pledge $10 or more

    35 backers

    Much gratitude and a big thank you! You've moved me closer to my goal and supported Queer Black filmmaking. Yeah!

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $25 or more

    66 backers

    Your support at this level means a lot to me. We will include your name on the BLACK IS BLUE website as well as give a shout out to you on Facebook and Twitter. We are eternally grateful.

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $30 or more

    12 backers

    SISTAH SINEMA AD: You will get 3 months of advertising on www.Sistahsinema.com web site. Its an international distribution network for Queer Women of Color cinema. Yeah!

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $50 or more

    26 backers

    ALL OF THE ABOVE PLUS---
    You'll get a digital hi-resolution production still from BLACK IS BLUE. What a great way to support the project and have a piece of it hang in your home or office.

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $100 or more

    20 backers

    ALL OF THE ABOVE PLUS---
    We will include your name in the ON SCREEN credits, send you a link to view the film 3 days after the premiere but prior to the festival circuit release, AND we will send you a PDF of the BLACK IS BLUE screenplay.

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $100 or more

    4 backers

    CAMEO REWARD: For those of you who like to perform, a $100 donation will guarantee you a cameo role in the film. That's right, your donation not only goes to the creation of an important film about transvisibility, it also makes you visible too. What an awesome way to truly be a part of BLACK IS BLUE.

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $150 or more

    0 backers Limited (8 left of 8)

    SHARE IT AND WEAR IT---
    For your generosity you will get ALL OF THE ABOVE + a limited edition BLACK IS BLUE T-shirt.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $200 or more

    2 backers Limited (4 left of 6)

    East Coast VIP ALERT!!!--
    All of the above rewards + 2 tickets to an East Coast screening of BLACK IS BLUE (travel not included). Watch the film on the big screening, hang with the filmmakers, and have a blast!

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $200 or more

    5 backers Limited (1 left of 6)

    West Coast VIP ALERT!!!---
    All of the above rewards + 2 tickets to a West Coast Screening of BLACK IS BLUE (travel not included). Watch the film on the big screen, hang with the filmmakers, and have a blast!

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $200 or more

    5 backers All gone!

    [COMMUNITY SPONSOR]. Enjoy all of the above plus these special outreach and promotional benefits: Your organizations’ name in the Closing Credits, Your organization’s name/logo on our official website, Your organization’s information featured in our promotional materials, Your organization’s banner/postage/signage and name/logo at BLACK IS BLUE parties, Your organization’s name/logo in BLACK IS BLUE gift bags distributed at parties and events, You will receive a Community Partner Email and PDF with more details with this pledge.

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $500 or more

    1 backer Limited (3 left of 4)

    NOW WE'RE TALKING---
    Your name will be included in the ON SCREEN film credits, an autographed physical copy of the BLACK IS BLUE screenplay, a BLACK IS BLUE T-shirt, + you'll get an autographed DVD of ONE of my previous films (The Early Works, The Watermelon Woman, Stranger Inside, or The Owls), AND an hour session with me to talk about anything!

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $500 or more

    0 backers Limited (2 left of 2)

    DUNYEMENTARY AWARD: For those of you who are fans of my cinema, you know that I weave real talking head interviews through my projects (The Watermelon Woman, The Owls) I call it the “dunyementary”. It’s a layer of my filmmaking that gives actors, activist and collaborators screen time to share with audience their truth. For BLACK IS BLUE the emphasis is about race, trans-indentities, and the media. So if you have something you’d like to contribute to this discussion, a $500 donation guarantees you’ll be a part of it.

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $1,000 or more

    1 backer Limited (1 left of 2)

    DINNER AND A MOVIE!---
    Your support at this level includes: your name in the ON SCREEN film credits, an autographed physical copy of the BLACK IS BLUE screenplay, a BLACK IS BLUE T-shirt, an autographed DVD of ONE of my previous films (The Early Works, The Watermelon Woman, Stranger Inside, or The Owls) AND dinner and a movie with me at my favorite movie theater in Oakland--The New Parkway (travel not included).

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $1,500 or more

    0 backers Limited (1 left of 1)

    DEL LAGRACE PRINT: Your support at this level includes: your name in the ON SCREEN film credits, an autographed physical copy of the BLACK IS BLUE screenplay, a BLACK IS BLUE T-shirt, an autographed DVD of ONE of my previous films (The Early Works, The Watermelon Woman, Stranger Inside, or The Owls) and a hi res digital print of a Del LaGRACE photograph.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $1,500 or more

    0 backers Limited (2 left of 2)

    KIM ANNO FANS! Your support at this level includes: your name in the ON SCREEN film credits, an autographed physical copy of the BLACK IS BLUE screenplay, a BLACK IS BLUE T-shirt, an autographed DVD of ONE of my previous films (The Early Works, The Watermelon Woman, Stranger Inside, or The Owls) and a hi res digital print of a Kim Anno photograph.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $2,500 or more

    0 backers Limited (2 left of 2)

    FILM FANS ALERT!!
    Your support at this level includes: your name in the ON SCREEN film credits, an autographed copy of the BLACK IS BLUE screenplay, a BLACK IS BLUE T-shirt; autographed DVDs of ALL of my previous films; an on screen cameo in BLACK IS BLUE (travel not included); and dinner and a movie with me at my favorite movie theater in Oakland--The New Parkway (travel not included).

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $5,000 or more

    0 backers Limited (1 left of 1)

    ASSOCIATE PRODUCER----

    Welcome to the BLACK IS BLUE team!
    Please contact me directly for your donation at this level.

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $10,000

    0 backers Limited (1 left of 1)

    EXECUTIVE PRODUCER---

    You are fabulous for supporting BLACK IS BLUE at this level. Please contact me directly so we can talk about your important role in the making of this movie.

    Estimated delivery:

Funding period

- (30 days)