With the 100th anniversary of the Tulsa Race Massacre approaching, one team wants to bring the history behind the horrific event to life again through Greenwood Avenue: A Virtual Reality Experience. The project is currently holding a Seed & Spark campaign through September; it’s currently 31 percent funded, raising $4,696 of the $15,000 it hopes to gain for post-production.
The project will take viewers through the two days in which 300 black people were killed in Tulsa, OK by white rioters who were inspired by Birth of a Nation. As the logline states:
“Greenwood Avenue is a groundbreaking, emotional exploration into the lives of the African-Americans living in Tulsa, Oklahoma in 1921, during the era of Black Wall Street, the second rise of the KKK, and the Tulsa Race Massacre in 1921, told through the eyes of an elderly Black female protagonist named Agnes Bess.”
“We want to give folks a taste of what it was like living in the 1920’s as a person of color,” wrote the team in a statement in the press release. “Lynching was on the rise but folks felt safe living in Northern Tulsa. It was a place to grow a family and build a business. We want people to experience it firsthand.”
The project is spearheaded by content creator Ayana Baraka. She leads a team of creatives including writer/director Spade Robinson, writer Suzen Baraka-Sweeney, producer Kenya Uhuru, executive producers Patrick Parker and Vangelis Lympouridis, viritual reality producer Emily Cooper, AD/associate producer Osahon Tongo, composer Jongnic Bontemps, sound designer Jan Bezouska and impact producer Michelle Zei.
“As an American woman, I am enamored with our diverse and storied history, but there are part of American history that are not included in books,” wrote Baraka in a statement in the release. “I believe and trust that folks wnat to know the truth about our history and want to do better for our future.”
The project, which is also part of Seed & Spark’s Keep It Colorful initiative, has been sponsored by Women Make Movies and is partially funded by Google through the company’s Google-YouTube VR Creator Lab. The project will debut on the YouTubeVR180 platform.