Saul Williams, Motion and Face2Face host David Peck talk about their new film Akilla’s Escape, extended family, lived experience, existence as resistance, racialized capitalism, poetry, art and pushing boundaries and why it may not be a great idea to dabble in hope or cynicism.
Find out more about the film here.
Akilla’s Escape weaves the present and past in a crime-noir about the urban child-soldier. Set in Toronto and New York where over 450,000 Jamaicans reside, the story speaks to the historical criminalization of black boys that modern society overlooks.
Akilla Brown is forty years old and for the first time in his life, the clandestine cannabis grow operation he runs is legit. Only one year into government approved
legalization, the pendulum of hypocrisy takes a toll and Akilla decides to cash out. While making a routine delivery on a cool, summer night, destiny takes an
unexpected turn when Akilla confronts a firestorm of masked youths in an armed robbery.
In the aftermath of the heist, Akilla captures one of the thieves, a mute fifteen-year-old boy named Sheppard. Upon learning the
bandits are affiliated with the Garrison Army, a Jamaican crime syndicate his grandfather founded. Akilla is forced to reckon with a cycle of violence he thought he escaped.
About Saul Williams:
Saul Williams came to public attention after the release of the internationally acclaimed film Slam, which he co-wrote and starred in. Slam introduced the world to the Slam poetry movement and won Sundance’s Grand Jury Prize and the Cannes Camera D’Or in 1998.
Saul holds a B.A. in Philosophy and Drama from Morehouse College and an M.F.A. in acting from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. He has performed in over 30 countries with invitations that have spanned from the White House, the Sydney Opera House, Lincoln Center, The Louvre, The Getty Center, Queen Elizabeth Hall, to villages, townships, community centers, and prisons across the world.
Saul has published five books of poetry and 7 musical albums. On stage, he was chosen for the lead role in Holler If Ya Hear Me, a Broadway musical featuring music by Tupac Shakur and he has appeared in numerous films and television shows. He is currently working on his directorial debut Neptune Frost.
Wendy “Motion” Braithwaite
Wendy Motion Brathwaite is a Canadian musician, writer and activist from Toronto, Ontario. She is most noted as cowriter with Charles Officer of the screenplay for the 2020 film Akilla’s Escape, for which they won the Canadian Screen Award for Best Original Screenplay at the 9th Canadian Screen Awards in 2021.
She also wrote the short films A Man’s Story (2016) and Theodore (2020) and has worked as a story editor on the television series Coroner.
She has performed as a hip hop artist and spoken word poet under the stage name Motion, and released the CD Motion in Poetry: The Audio Xperience and has also published the poetry collections Motion in Poetry and 40 Dayz, and has written theatrical plays including Oraltorio: A Theatrical Mixtape, 4our Woman, Aneemah’s Spot, Loveleigh’s Logue, Nightmare Dream and Rebirth of the Afronauts: A Black Space Odyssey.
Image Copyright and Credit: Cane Sugar FilmWorks.
For more information about David Peck’s podcasting, writing and public speaking please visit his site here.
With thanks to Josh Snethlage and Mixed Media Sound.
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