Logline: A popular group of teen influencers, The Dream Team, is invited to go to an unconventional diversity training program to rehabilitate their image after a racially insensitive video of them goes viral; while there, they are forced to confront the consequences of their prejudice in a horrific manner.
The Harvesters pitch at
When we all get tired of seeing the same stories over and over again, that is when chances are taken and change happens. The reason why most of us decided to make movies is to tell stories that make an impact, isn’t it? A lot of these stories start with the question “What if?”. My “What if?” for THE HARVESTERS came from a place of anger; What if people of color were given the opportunity to challenge their oppressors to change...or else? A combination of WILLY WONKA AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY and GET OUT, THE HARVESTERS is a twisted journey that delves into this possibility by combining modern concepts like social media influencers, diversity training and the latest craze in composting and making them horror, thus challenging societal norms in a unique and relevant way.
Growing up with both black and white relatives gives me a unique perspective on matters of race and privilege. I have seen first-hand the way society treats my parents differently and the contrast in the way they have to navigate through life daily. My father is privileged, while my mother is constantly having to prove herself; He is comfortable in most circumstances, while she is forced to use her white partner for validation or even protection. I am bringing this perspective to THE HARVESTERS through both visual style and character development. And I am not afraid to show and tell these hard to hear truths to audiences so they can’t ignore them anymore. I want to entertain them, to make them laugh, to scare them, but I also want them to leave the theater having learned something new about themselves and others.
All people of color have been in situations where they’ve felt powerless and it was rare for them to see depictions of any of this power being taken back in mainstream media until recently with GET OUT and LOVECRAFT COUNTRY. I want to build on this wave by taking it to the extreme.
While THE HARVESTERS may be offensive to some, it will provide a sense of relief and unity to others. One of the more visceral reactions I’ve seen was while watching THE BIRTH OF A NATION at the Cinemark in Baldwin Hills. When Nate Parker’s character, Nat Turner and the other “rebels”, killed all the slave owners towards the end, the entirely black audience leapt to their feet at the same time and cheered as though all we got the same soaring emotion all at once; we were all on the same wavelength. They did not cheer for the deaths (hopefully), they cheered for what those deaths meant, justice being served. I’ll never forget that moment. I do not condone this type of violence, or the actions of the filmmaker who brought it to the big screen, but I do understand that this is an example of why representation matters and seeing a visual portrayal of a group of people overcoming the pain that people of color feel every day is important.
THE HARVESTERS is a story that needs to be told and, through it, I have found a distinct way of challenging societal norms that I can contribute to from development through distribution. Just like THE HARVESTERS, I’m young, diverse, scary and a little twisted and I look forward to bringing these attributes to my feature directorial debut.