Private Project

Always Carry A Bible

An experimental portrayal of police brutality from the role of a bystander.

  • Rhyan Elliott
  • Rhyan Elliott
  • Alexandria McAlpine
  • Jasmine Gates
  • Alicia Rodriguez
    Director of Photography
  • Matthew Weinstein
    Key Cast
  • Justin Kelly
    Key Cast
  • Christian Maverick White
    Key Cast
  • Alexander Hammet
    Key Cast
  • Alfred Reid
    Key Cast
  • Jesse Marciniak
    Key Cast
  • Kristopher Heaton
    Key Cast
  • Project Type:
    Experimental, Short, Student
  • Genres:
  • Runtime:
    5 minutes 31 seconds
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Language:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
Director Biography - Rhyan Elliott

Rhyan Elliott is a senior at George Mason University majoring in Film and Video Studies with a concentration in Screenwriting. On a path into the world of television writing, she has a deep understanding of the power of subtext, showing and not telling, and balancing realistic dialogue with action. She has written and co-written short films and web series scripts for genres such as drama, comedy, science fiction, horror, thriller, and experimental with notable projects such as Sugar Babies, The Gay Club, and BLOCK’D. Outside of working consistently on
student film sets as a producer, script supervisor, camera assistant, or grip, she has secured an internship for Summer 2019 with BlackLadyGoddess, an upcoming indie television pilot, and two internships within the film industry while in high school as a Producer's Assistant for Belltower Pictures during their principal photography of their feature film By the Grace of Bob which she was, later, extended an invitation by the Producer to intern for Richmond International Film Festival. Since then, she has won a Regional Student Emmy for her co-producing work on Close Call and has also worked on Amazon-distributed web series Mount Hideaway as a Cinematographer. Always Carry A Bible is her third film she has written and directed after The Dream Machine and Relax.

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Director Statement

It is my full intention to direct a film utilizing an experimental medium to convey a call to action with tangible meaning. Always Carry A Bible enables the viewer to spectate a different perspective on the impact and role of police brutality in present-day America.

We’ve all seen these devastating and traumatic events, but how are we impacted when all we have is sound? When we are not given context and are forced into a role where we cannot react? Who are we when we become the bystander?

Always Carry A Bible relies solely on space and sound to convey its message -- no violence, retraumatization, or visceral imagery is utilized to recontextualize the experience of police brutality; additionally, the utilization of one long take and dramatic lighting drives the cinematic experience of the film, creating a sense of emotional confrontation for the audience.

This film necessitated a person of color with sensitive and understanding directorial capabilities to guide its premise; and, being a woman of color who has witnessed the injustices of law enforcement, I fully believe I am the correct person to do so, expressed in a way that is artfully, effectively, empathetically, and compassionately communicated.