The video replays police audio from various high-profile police encounters, featuring famous actors and activists like Michael B. Jordan, Michael Williams, Sophia Dawson, Van Jones, Marc Lamont Hill and Danny Glover standing with their bodies pressed against a wall.
The actors’ silent reactions serve as a sobering reminder of powerlessness and inequality in the light of the back-to-back police shootings that claim the lives of countless Black men and women in America.
Miami-based directors Gerard Bush and Christopher Renz used their creative prowess to formulate an effective visual message. Shot in black and white, while splicing in audio of George Zimmerman, who killed Trayvon Martin; the Tulsa officer describing Terence Crutcher as a “bad dude;” and Anderson Cooper discussing Kenneth Chamberlain, the 68-year-old former Marine shot by police, “Against The Wall” conveys the injustice of police brutality in under four minutes.
To channel effective performances, the directors instructed the actors “to imagine what it would be like to be taken against your will and forced to be reduced yourself; your very humanity, in order to pacify the police—who regardless may take your life even if you stayed perfectly still, with your hands against the wall,” The Daily Beast reports.
Belafonte, a life-long vocal advocate and champion of social justice, told The Daily Beast the PSA exists to circumvent the pillaging of Black bodies.
“The constant vilification of people of color is not new to the American psyche,” Belafonte said. “Somehow cell phone video, dash cam video and news media flashing before our very eyes, hour after hour, the murder and victimization of black and brown bodies has desensitized us.”
SOURCE: The Daily Beast, Vimeo | PHOTO CREDIT: Getty