SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) – The Hazard Film Project is a local nonprofit looking to encourage and educate about diversity through film. It was formed by two local filmmakers. Their first project is called ‘Hazard,’ a short film that looks to create perspective and conversations about race.
For filmmaker Bobby Peacock, racial discrimination isn’t a new experience.
“That’s something I’ve experienced in my life, being pulled over and being treated by the color of my skin and not my character,” Peacock said.
He’s collaborating with local filmmaker Daniel Bergeson to shine a spotlight on the conversation of racial tension. They’re doing this through a short film they’re making titled ‘Hazard.’ It centers around a Black family taking a road trip across the country.
“And then they have a certain encounter with police officers who, something so simple as getting pulled over or car breaking down turns into something that’s kind of blown our of proportion,” Peacock said.
“It explores the different anxieties and fears that may exist within people of color as they travel across the country versus what it might be like for a white person to travel,” Bergeson said.
Bergeson wrote the script over the course of three years. He says it took intense research and collaboration with many people in the local Black community.
“I seek to tell stories that are about people who are different from me because then I am able to learn from those perspectives,” Bergeson said.
“You know, this is something that needs to be talked about this is something that is just bigger than a film project… bigger than me, myself,” Peacock said.
“Within all good stories and within this story specifically that is based in empathy and that is innately human,” Bergeson said.
Production will consist of a diverse cast and crew with many from around the area, and some flying in from other parts of the country. With how popular the medium of film is, they’re hoping that it will connect to a wide audience.
“When you watch something on screen and when you see someone that isn’t like you experiencing something and you’re able to feel that in your heart too, it’s… there’s nothing like it,” Bergeson said.
And inspire those audiences to connect with other diverse communities and give them a peek through a different kind of lens.
“I feel like this film is providing a safe place for people to have those kind of conversations,” Peacock said.
“I think that’s the whole point of what we’re doing is building that community, and we’re living it right now. We’re able to live that just by doing it,” Bergeson said.