There is no doubt that the Freddie Gray incident had an impact on the nation. It hit Baltimore particularly hard. An upcoming documentary, Baltimore Rising, will explore the events that took place after the death of 25-year-old Freddy Gray. The producers and those that participated in the film believe that the media sensationalized the protests. They hope the documentary will shed light on the human side of the narrative and shatter the misconceptions constructed by the national and local media.
Director Sonja Sohn teamed up with activists Makayla Gilliam-Price and Kwame Rose during the Television Critic Association’s summer meeting this Wednesday. During the sit down, the trio discussed the documentary, which is set to debut on HBO this November.
The producer promises to chronicle the passionate feelings on both sides of the aisle after Gray passed away. The 25-year-old suffered a spinal injury while being escorted in a police van in 2015. He died a week later. Gray, who had frequent run-ins with the authorities, was picked up at the time for carrying an illegal switchblade.
Sohn is no stranger to Baltimore. Having starred in the hit HBO television series, The Wire, which took place in Baltimore, Sohn has spent a good amount of time in the city and has gone on to develop close-knit relationships with some of the local community leaders. As a part of her “community work”, Sohn was eventually approached about developing the documentary.
Sohn insists the people of Baltimore were having a far more sophisticated conversation that what the media portrayed. She felt it was her mission and purpose to “make the world a better place and to fight for justice and truth and freedom.” Suffice to say, she didn’t hesitate to take on the duty.
David Simon, who created The Wire, was “a little worried” when Sohn first got involved. He was concerned that Baltimore’s complex situation may not play well on film. Nevertheless, Sohn remained dedicated to the document. Kwame Rose was arrested twice during the protests. Today, he works with the Baltimore Mayor’s office as a liaison. Rose has hope that the film will prove to be an inspiration for the viewer.
According to HBO’s official website, Baltimore Rising follows activists, police officers, gang affiliates and community leaders as they struggle to hold Baltimore together during the chaos following Gray’s death. The documentary is scheduled to debut in October of this year.