My goal, hope, and ambition have always been to present the contributions of black people to this country in a way that goes beyond the conventional boundaries of filmmaking and storytelling. I am drawn to projects that shed light on the stories of historically marginalized individuals.
Representation is not only important, it is arguably more crucial now than ever before. “Bass Reeves” is a unique show because we have been given all the necessary resources to authentically portray a beautifully diverse Western story. Personally, this has been a 4D history lesson, introducing me to a new version of American history. The black cowboy and lawman in the Old West have unfortunately been underrepresented and inaccurately portrayed.
In this show, we showcase a man who is empowered and uses his power to benefit his community and country. I refuse to give up on this project. I hope that audiences will recognize and appreciate the strength of black families and their ability to overcome adversity.
It was essential for us to explore the authentic human experiences of individuals from every race and ethnicity in the show. We have put an enormous amount of effort into ensuring historical accuracy, from the production design and costumes to the hair, makeup, and script. It is crucial to have someone who understands and respects the indigenous culture, which is why we hired Mo brings plenty. He has been invaluable in ensuring that we accurately depict the Native American experience.
Throughout production, we have had native Creek speakers and Cherokee speakers assisting us to ensure the language and culture are presented correctly. Our intention is to shed light on the continued existence of Native American culture and language. We wanted to showcase Native American characters in a way that challenges the traditional Western narrative.
History shows that Native Americans have played significant roles in assisting newcomers to this country, whether it be providing drinkable water or knowledge of edible berries. It is vital for us to embrace these opportunities to explore the rich and complex story of the American West in a mindful and truthful manner..