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DAEQUAN
COLLIER

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WHAT IF BLACK BOYS WERE BUTTERFLIES--min
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ABOUT ME

DAEQUAN ALEXANDER COLLIER IS AN AWARD WINNING FILMMAKER, BORN AND RAISED IN THE BRONX. HE RECEIVED HIS BFA FROM NEW YORK UNIVERSITY'S TISCH SCHOOL OF THE ARTS AND AN MFA STUDENT AT EMERSON COLLEGE IN SCREENWRITING. HIS WORK HAS BEEN SHOWCASED IN A NUMBER OF FESTIVALS AND EXHIBITIONS, BOTH DOMESTICALLY AND INTERNATIONALLY, AND HAS WON A HOST OF AWARDS.

 
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AS AN ARTIST OF COLOR, DAEQUAN BELIEVES THAT HIS IDENTITY IS AN INDISPUTABLE PART OF HIS ARTISTRY THAT CANNOT BE AVOIDED IN HIS WORK, AND STRIVES TO CREATE WORK THAT PROPERLY ILLUSTRATES THEIR HUMANITY. GROWING UP IN THE BRONX ALLOWED HIM TO COME ACROSS PEOPLE AND COMMUNITIES THAT ARE OFTEN LEFT UNSEEN AND UNHEARD IN MAINSTREAM MEDIA, BUT DAEQUAN BELIEVES THEIR STORIES ARE COMPLEX, BEAUTIFUL AND IMPORTANT, AND HE WORKS TO TELL THEM.

SPOTLIGHT

BEST BIPOC DIRECTOR - Argo Untold Storie
2nd Place - John Michaels award - Big Mu
Best Social Justice Short - Shortie Film
OFFICIAL SELECTION - Charlotte Film Fest
OFFICIAL SELECTION - Virginia Film Festi
OFFICIAL SELECTION - Oxford Film Festiva

I WANTED TO CREATE THIS FILM BECAUSE I FOUND THAT WHILE OTHER BOYS CAN ENJOY A CHILDHOOD OF FREEDOMS, FOR MANY REASONS, “BLACK BOYHOOD” IS A BRIEF, COMPLICATED EXISTENCE. W.E.B. DUBOIS WROTE ABOUT THIS IN SOULS OF BLACK FOLK, SAYING, ”THROUGHOUT HISTORY, THE POWERS OF SINGLE BLACK MEN FLASH HERE AND THERE LIKE FALLING STARS, AND DIE SOMETIMES BEFORE THE WORLD HAS RIGHTLY GAUGED THEIR BRIGHTNESS.” AT AN EARLY AGE, BLACK MALES ARE OFTEN LABELLED AS VIOLENT AND TROUBLESOME, OVER-POLICED IN THEIR COMMUNITIES, AND FORCED INTO HYPER-MASCULINE GENDER NORMS. TO ME, IF BLACK BOYS WERE BUTTERFLIES IS AN URGENT SOCIAL DOCUMENT. FOR US, FREEDOM IS A LUXURY. THROUGHOUT HISTORY WE’VE FOUND THIS TO BE TRUE, AND THROUGH THIS FILM I WANTED TO EXPLORE THAT IDEA. SHOWING YOUNG BLACK MEN ENJOYING THEIR YOUTH AND SEEKING LIBERATION FROM THESE COMPLEXITIES, ALONGSIDE THE INTIMATE OFF-SCREEN CONVERSATION BETWEEN THE TWO BLACK MEN, PROVIDES A CLOSER LOOK INTO THIS AMERICAN REALITY.