A Mind of Its Own

C.J., a black woman, is a hard worker and is looking to move up the corporate ladder. When she comes into work on the day of her big presentation with a new hairstyle, her literal, loud-talking hair causes her coworkers to react in a less-than-ideal manner where she faces racial microaggressions. She must then decide: is her hair worth the headache, or will she just let her hair have a mind of its own?

  • C.C. Randle
    Who Can Relate?!
  • C.C. Randle
    Who Can Relate?!
  • Jordan Rivers
  • C.C. Randle
  • Project Type:
    Animation, Experimental, Short, Student
  • Genres:
    Comedy, Drama
  • Runtime:
    12 minutes 11 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    May 19, 2023
  • Production Budget:
    20,000 USD
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
    RED Epic
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
    Yes - DePaul University
Director Biography - C.C. Randle

C.C. Randle (Courtney Cierra Randle) is from Zion, IL. She has always possessed a passion for movies and filmmaking and has made films and acted in plays throughout her childhood and teenage years. She attended Oxford University in England and studied Shakespeare and Modern Literature, developing a deep appreciation for storytelling and character development.

After earning her undergraduate degree, C.C. began her teaching career and has continued to teach middle and high school students English and film for over a decade, while teaching she earned her Master's of Science in Human-Computer Interaction from DePaul University. While there, she took a screenwriting class on The Hero's Journey, which renewed her interest in filmmaking and storytelling.

C.C. decided to follow her passion for film and began pursuing her MFA in Film and Television Directing at DePaul University. During her time there, she explored experimental film, animation, and Black storytelling. She gained valuable experience working on a variety of film projects and honing her craft as a director.

As a filmmaker, C.C. is known for her unique approach to storytelling, often incorporating elements of experimental film and animation into her work. With her focus on black storytelling, she hopes to be recognized in the film industry as a champion of Black film.

In addition to directing, C.C. also works as a high school film and English teacher, screenwriter, and producer, collaborating with other filmmakers to bring their visions to life on the screen.

C.C.’s passion for film and storytelling continues to inspire her work, and she is committed to telling stories that challenge conventional thinking and push the boundaries of traditional filmmaking.

Add Director Biography
Director Statement

I chose to direct this film because I wanted to bring attention to the challenges Black women face in their daily work lives, particularly in regard to their natural hair. As a Black woman myself, I know firsthand the struggles that come with navigating corporate environments while trying to maintain the integrity of our hair. I wanted to give viewers an inside look at these experiences.

One of the biggest challenges we faced while making this film was the lack of funds and assistance for VFX. We had to remove the green suit puppeteer with rotoscoping and compositing, due to budget constraints this step was extended beyond its scheduled finish date. However, we were fortunate to recently partner with The Banditry Co. and The Mill, two professional companies that are able to complete the film with a professional touch for both VFX and color. Despite these setbacks, the VFX is now complete, and we only need to finish coloring!

Even with these great challenges, we were able to create a film that we are proud of. I was inspired by the work of Edgar Wright's "Scott Pilgrim vs. The World" and Boots Riley's "Sorry to Bother You" in creating this film. I wanted to infuse elements of humor and animation into a story that is rooted in real experiences.

Working with this cast and crew was a special experience for me. As a first-time filmmaker, it was exciting to see my vision come to life. Although we were unable to hold rehearsals due to the pandemic, I assigned homework to watch specific episodes of Issa Rae's "Insecure" to help the actors better understand the tone and style of the film.

One of the most memorable moments on set was working with Time, one of the only Black puppeteers in the country and a talented tap dancer. In between takes, we would record his tap dancing, which added an extra layer of excitement to the production. I also enjoyed watching Billy, who plays Rob Loss (Rhymes with Boss), eat an entire banana for breakfast every day without removing the peel...

This film will always be special to me because it is my first project as a director with a cast and crew. I consider it to be my calling card, showcasing my passion for experimental and unconventional storytelling. I believe this film demonstrates my ability to direct any genre or style.

We faced some delays while creating this film, but the experience of working on this film has taught me so much and has prepared me for future projects. I am excited to see where my directing journey takes me next.