The cast of the new indie hit film Rivers Wash Over Me may be racking up accolades at film festivals across the country for their moving performances, but before the script came to life onscreen black gay producer Dexter Davis, CEO of D Street Media Group was hard at work.
Rivers Wash Over Me tells the story of Sequan, an African-American teenager from Brooklyn who is abused at home and bullied at school. After his mother dies Seqaun moves in with relatives living in a small town plagued with secrets in rural Alabama. He befriends a white girl with a cocaine habit who astutely hones in on his true sexuality and introduces him to her cute brother.
Davis recently spoke to Ryan Lee, Editor of David Atlanta Magazine on the controversial themes in Rivers Wash Over Me and how he became comfortable being openly gay.
"It had teenagers and drugs and a rape scene, and I thought, this is not an easy film,"says Davis. But after talking with the film's director about the epidemic of young people committing suicide after enduring anti-gay bullying in school, and thinking about how many people in his own community are affected by the same issues explored in the movie, Davis signed on as executive producer.
On his sexuality Davis says it was never an issue for him. "I grew up not being very outspoken about it, but I was certainly not trying to hide it in any kind of way or not be myself", says Davis.
I stand in my truth and people seem to respect that. I can't imagine the alternative to that. I can't imagine being worried about who's going to know and how this is going to affect your business.
I think a lot of people worry a lot for nothing. That's npt to say that it doesn't exist where people can get harassed, or your job might be in jeopardy-make no mistake, I'm aware of situations that happen in this country and around the world:but the fact of the matter is that when you have the courage to be yourself and live in your truth, then I think things kind of work itself out-that's been my experience so far.
Rivers Wash Over Me makes it's west coast premiere at the Castro Theatre in San Francisco tonight. Get into the trailer below.