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The Perfect Sacrifice

Mississippi, 1955: After her son is kidnapped and brutally murdered, a mother fights to have an open-casket funeral in order to expose the ugly racial problems facing the country at that time. 


Best Short Film (nominated*) - ABFF HBO Short Film Competition

Best Short Film - Harlem Intl Film Festival

Best Student Film - San Francisco Black Film Festival 

Best Picture Short - Action On Film Festival 


American Black Film Festival HBO Short Film Competition (2014)

LA Shorts Fest (2014)

Harlem International Film Festival (2014)

Mississippi International Film Festival (2014)

Western New York Black Film Festival (2015)

Richmond International Film Festival (2015)

Cleveland International Film Festival (2015)

Hollyshorts Monthly Screening (2015)

Pan African Film Festival (2016)

San Francisco Black Film Festival (2016)

SAG-AFTRA Foundation Los Angeles Short Film Showcase (2017)

Action On Film Festival (2018)

Reel Sisters of the Diaspora Film Festival (2018) 


Director's Statement

Emmett Till was a name I first heard when I was eleven years old. My brother had just watched the documentary series, Eyez on the Prize in his eighth grade social studies class. As he gave me an overview of the film, one story in particular stood out: Emmett Till. I couldn’t get it out of my mind. 


I watched Eyez on the Prize two years later in that same social studies class—and I credit our teacher for showing the film as it was not a part of the curriculum. It was at that point that I realized the depths Emmett’s mother, Mrs. Mamie Till-Mobley went to seek justice for her son’s murder.


Mrs. Mobley was a brazen force in letting the world know what happened to her son. It was her determination and inability to accept no for an answer that prevented Emmett’s murder from going unnoticed and becoming just another ghost of Mississippi as so many other innocent victims of racism had succumbed to at that time. 


In the years that followed, I found myself constantly going back to their story, and in doing so, realized how little it was known to those around me. People either did not know or did not want to talk about it. What was even more baffling and shameful was the erasure of two American  heroes who have never been truly acknowledged or credited for igniting such a monumental movement. 


The Perfect Sacrifice was developed following several years of research and influenced by the conviction that this one incident connects to so many people and things that make us who we are. The story is told from the perspective of Mamie Till-Mobley. It is through her eyes that the audience will learn the truth, get to know Emmett as the fun-loving, free-spirited young man that he was, and understand how significant this story is to the framework of advancing civil rights, and highlighting the inequities of the American justice system. Tolerance of hate breeds hate and unfortunately there are still individuals who subscribe to the ideology of intolerance and hate, which only reaffirms the importance and relevance of this story today.


The experience I am trying to invoke with this film is one of deeper understanding and acknowledgement of the power we hold as individuals. Mrs. Mobley, like anyone who has lost a child, was embarking on uncharted territory, but she chose to risk her life by seeking justice in an unjust system and by extension, unjust world in the hopes that it would save another parent from experiencing such a tragic loss. It is my hope that through watching her story, that her courage and sacrifice be an inspiration to us all. There is a wealth of history during the Jim Crow era that is either glossed over or withheld completely from our text books and curriculums. In understanding that, we must continue to utilize other means of expression to tell our stories so as not to lose sight of the sacrifices made by our forebears; and mine is through film.

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