While Oscar-nominated filmmaker Amy Berg waits to see if any distributor will have the balls to pick up her controversial Hollywood sex abuse documentary “An Open Secret,” she's not wasting any time charging ahead into her next project. She'll be teaming with actor Nate Parker on a film about the “black male crisis” in the U.S. following the August shooting of Michael Brown and the on-going tension in Ferguson, Mo.
On Wednesday, two days after a grand jury failed to indict the officer involved in the shooting, Berg, Parker and writer/director Matthew Cooke launches an Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign for the film. With a goal of $25,000, the campaign has already generated about $4,500.
“Our conversations about race in this country have been ongoing,” Berg told Variety. “It is truly a tragic state that we are in that we have to remind people that we abolished slavery 150 years ago, but the sad statistics today show that black people are targeted every day by the system. Our systemic racial profiling is very deeply embedded in our culture, and the Michael Brown case shows we have to find a way to change this. Now.”
According to a statement on the Indiegogo site, Parker “will venture into black communities to speak to various stakeholders about the crisis facing these men. Through the examination of specific cases, Nate will create relevant and responsive discourse with the intention of mining strong and tangible solutions to combat this ever-growing crisis. We will also highlight existing programs that are creating effective and sustainable counter action to the crisis.”
Berg was nominated for an Academy Award in 2008 for “Deliver Us from Evil,” focusing on sexual misconduct in the Catholic church. She also teamed with filmmaker Peter Jackson in 2012 for “West of Memphis,” centered on the West Memphis Three case.