Thursday, November 7, 2013

Slavery in Movies

This piece is out in today's L.A. Times, for an article on how slavery has historically been depicted in movies:

The story reviews movies that dealt with the "peculiar institution," going back to Uncle Tom's Cabin in 1903, through 2012's Lincoln, and how the vast majority shy away from showing the true brutality of slavery. Excepting Tarantino's Django or the television classic Roots, the few that did explicitly show the violence and barbarity, such as Amistad, weren't box office draws. Up until now, Hollywood has preferred not to risk putting off audiences with such scenes of depravity. Steve McQueen's 12 Years a Slave changes all that by putting the reality of the brutality of slavery at the forefront. You can read the article here.

After turning in the sketches, it was a toss up between numbers 1, 3, and 5. We ultimately went with number one, obviously, but I think the other two would have worked out as well. They focused more on the idea of the most offensive aspects of slavery being hidden or cut out of movies.
It was a great assignment to work on. Thank you, Wes!