Just when it seemed the whole down low phenomenon was yesterday's news, a new film by actor-director Bill Duke entitled Cover is set to be released in the fall, and will no doubt spark a huge debate around this controversial topic.
I first learned of this project on keithboykin.com when it was called Invisible. Keith along with many in the Black LGBT community feared that this film would further demonize Black gay men as irresponsible predators who are purposefully infecting Black women with HIV. I've written about my disgust for the media hype around the down low and the men who are leading these double lives, so I won't go off on a tangent again.
I will say that I hope major corrections have been made to the script and the false statistics the director provided as fact in the original trailer have been removed. The original trailer is two minutes and fifty seconds of pure adrenaline. If the objective was to get people interested in buying a ticket to see the film, even in my disdain for the topic and the way it's being presented I would have to say mission accomplished.
According to a recent interview with Philadelphia Gay News Bill Duke had this to say,
“With black people and the growing numbers of AIDS in our community, [we have] to take responsibility for our behavior,” he said. “[We have to] become aware of the fact that no one is going to come and save us. You look at the numbers of AIDS cases these days and the federal government is not doing that much, unfortunately. We have to take responsibility for our own community. I don’t know any other culture of men, other than black men, that if you say to them a disease is wiping out 70 percent of their women in terms of new cases, would stand by and watch that. We’re talking about our sisters. We’re talking about our daughters, our nieces and our young men. When you go to the black community, it’s amazing. People still think it’s still a white homosexual disease. It’s insane. It’s killing us. I don’t get it. Something has to be done and that’s what we’re attempting to do.”
That statement is a huge departure from the accusatory tone of Duke's early statements and the artisitic direction of the film. Let's hope that his intentions are good and he's not another J.L. King using a hot button issue to fill his wallet. I guess we'll have to wait and see. I've uploaded the original trailer for you to watch, check it out up above.