Ava Duvernay made her way to the Hollywood Reporter’s TV Director’s Roundtable to offer her fans fresh insight into her changing world following the success of ‘When They See Us.’
There, she was joined by her peers (Patty Jenkins, Ben Stiller and Adam McKay included) and spoke openly about her journey in Hollywood, beautiful relationship with film and how she is using the medium to shed fresh light on stories once buried by the media.
When I called the guys, I had to explain to them what the Emmys were, and I think that is very telling. This ceremony and this experience is very isolated to our industry. You have people who are really living their lives deeply, meaningfully, that have no connection with our kind of laudatory celebrations. For them, their awards came from the way that their lives have changed, the way that people are now regarding them, the way that history has been rewritten. Now that they know, they’re getting their tuxes ready and they’re going to be up in there.
In order to “humanize” — and I think that’s a violent word because it means that you’ve not been seen as or treated as human until this point — you have to treat the characters as humans. And that’s very much the case for people behind bars and people who have to interact with and engage with the criminal justice system, particularly prison. We need to make sure that we’re showing the totality of human beings, unfortunately, in order for some of us to realize that they should be cared for and regarded humanely. In order to do that, you have to construct the whole story. You bring in family. You bring in memory. You bring in dreams. You bring all of that.
DuVernay is currently working on a project named ‘New Gods’ for DC Comics.