The term "code switch" refers to a social phenomenon where an individual alters their speech or behavior in order to match those around them.
This film is about a young black man named Amir who is directly impacted by code switching. He feels the need to be masculine, athletic, good looking, well-dressed--to be the best. Amir is so determined to meet these unrealistic standards that he doesn’t even recognize the harm he is causing to himself. "Code Switch" is about shattering the illusion of perfection and illustrating the psychological damage of hiding who you are.
Donté Clark is from North Richmond, California and has made himself known as a powerful social activist through his writing and performances. He is an actor, a poet, a rapper, and a community mentor. Donté is the subject of the Netflix documentary Romeo is Bleeding, and has a starring role on the webseries The North Pole.
Talent: We are paying our lead actor the SAG minimum for an "ultra-low budget film."
Equipment: "Code Switch" will be filmed on a RED EPIC. We are able to use the cinema camera for free, however, we are renting out anamorphic lenses. Due to the large 5k resolution files of the RED EPIC, we will need to purchase a hard drive able to process the footage. Since this is an experimental film, we have big plans for lighting. However, these expenses add up quickly.
Distribution: Once our film is complete, we plan to distribute "Code Switch" to film festivals.
Set Construction: We are building a soundstage from the ground up. We will need to cover the costs of all the necessary tools, such as nails, paint, walls, and flooring. Afterwards we will be dressing the set with props and furniture to give the appearance of a New York city apartment.
Special and Visual Effects: Our film will have some gore, and it is necessary for us to hire a qualified make-up artist to create realistic wounds and scars. More importantly, we need a make-up artist who specializes in POC make-up application. The film also requires a small amount of visual effects in post-production.
Food: Our crew is made up entirely of volunteers. We have a lot of crew coming onboard to help us with set construction and production. Filmmaking takes a lot of labor, and it's important we keep our crew well-fed and happy :)
Risks and challenges
As with every film, there are dozens of risks and challenges present throughout the stages of production. One of the greatest we will encounter is the creation of our hand-built set. The construction of a convincing soundstage set, with painted beams and flats, staged lighting, and set dressing takes a considerable amount of time, energy, and finances. Another challenge is the successful implementation of special effects make-up. The melanated prosthetics need to be seamlessly blended with the actor's skin tone in order to create a realistic effect. Lastly, our biggest risk is choosing to finance our film through crowdfunding. While we already have 40% of the budget necessary to begin production, we do not have adequate funds to complete it just yet.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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