Private Project

Mercy's Kennel

G.K. Simpson is a former dog breeder who takes viewers into a world where money talks, pit bulls are currency and the media perpetuate many of the stereotypes maligning this misunderstood breed. Mercy's Kennel explores the economic backdrop to what is commonly called "backyard breeding" to show how poverty and lack of education are at the root of pet overpopulation and animal abuse in many underserved areas around the country.

To illustrate the plight of the pit bull, G.K. and former breeder Byron Haygood (B. Good) interview shelter officials, rescue groups, breeders, dog fighters and everyday people on the street. Our story takes a tragic turn when G.K.'s childhood friend, Matthew Hardeman, is brutally murdered. G.K. and Matt's brother, Mickey (Snoop), search for solutions to the violence of poverty paralyzing so many inner-city communities, and their quest inevitably leads them back behind bars to more dogs...and people in need of rescue.

The parallels drawn between pit bulls and people are unmistakable, unintentional and completely unavoidable. Ultimately, Mercy's Kennel is a story about redemption and salvation that transcends race, culture and economics to present a compelling look at the challenges facing pit bulls...and people living in an increasingly hostile world. As Mahatma Gandhi once said, “The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.” We think the jury is still out on that one.

  • Tracy Bishop
    Director
  • Tracy Bishop
    Producer
  • G.K. Simpson, Byron Haygood (B. Good), Mickey Hardeman (Snoop)
    Key Cast
  • John Schipp, Director of Photography
    Pit Crew
  • Jim Gilson, Camera and Technical Advisor
    Pit Crew
  • Amy Jackson, Camera
    Pit Crew
  • Rebecca Novak, Camera and Associate Producer
    Pit Crew
  • G.K. Simpson, Camera
    Pit Crew
  • Byron Haygood, Camera
    Pit Crew
  • Darrell Kelly, Camera
    Pit Crew
  • Tracy Bishop, Camera and Editor
    Pit Crew
  • Dana Babin, Colorist and Technical Advisor
    Pit Crew
  • Jaeda Wadley, Logo Design and Animation
    Pit Crew
  • Daniel Ham, Motion Graphic Design
    Pit Crew
  • Brent Busby, Re-Recording Sound Mixer
    Pit Crew
  • Brian Wheeler, Associate Producer
    Pit Crew
  • Steven Keller, Technical Advisor
    Pit Crew
  • Multi-Man Tha Skipso, Singer/Songwriter/Composer/Musician
    Music
  • Elliot Holden, Composer/Musician
    Music
  • Tripple T, Singer/Songwriter
    Music
  • Doug Long, Composer/Musician
    Music
  • DJ Oxygen, Composer/Musician
    Music
  • Michael Robinson, Singer/Songwriter/Composer/Musician
    Music
  • HoOkeZ, Singer/Songwriter/Composer/Musician
    Music
  • B. Mitchell Station, Singer/Songwriter/Composer/Musician
    Music
  • G.K. Simpson, Singer/Songwriter
    Music
  • E. Mackey, Singer/Songwriter/Composer/Musician
    Music
  • King Spydamann, Singer/Songwriter
    Music
  • Willie Millionaire, Singer/Songwriter
    Music
  • June Sanders, Composer/Musician
    Music
  • Free, Singer
    Music
  • Jimmie Soprano, Composer/Musician
    Music
  • Coolie Sway, Singer/Songwriter
    Music
  • DotCom, Singer/Songwriter
    Music
  • Project Type:
    Documentary
  • Genres:
    Animal Welfare, Social Commentary
  • Runtime:
    1 hour 24 minutes 4 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    June 16, 2017
  • Production Budget:
    10,000 USD
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Language:
    English
  • Shooting Format:
    Digital
  • Film Color:
    Color
  • First-time Filmmaker:
    Yes
  • Student Project:
    No
  • Atlanta Docufest
    Atlanta, GA
    United States
    Semi-Finalist
  • Southern States Indie FanFilmFest
    Biloxi, MS
    United States
    Finalist
  • Spotlight Documentary Film Awards
    Atlanta, GA
    United States
    Silver Award
  • ME Film Festival
    Milledgeville, GA
    April 29, 2018
    World/U.S./Georgia Premiere
    Official Selection
  • Black Cat Picture Show
    Augusta, GA
    United States
    August 19, 2018
    Official Selection
  • Animal Film Festival
    Nevada City, CA
    United States
    February 10, 2019
    California Premiere
    Official Selection/Best Feature/Audience Choice
  • Prison City Film Festival
    Huntsville, TX
    United States
    March 1, 2019
    Texas Premiere
    Official Selection/Nominee-Best Feature/Nominee-Best Music
  • Oregon Documentary Film Festival
    Portland, OR
    United States
    Official Selection
  • Etowah Film Festival
    Canton, GA
    United States
    May 25, 2019
    Official Selection
  • Georgia Documentary Film Festival
    Atlanta, GA
    United States
    June 1, 2019
    Official Selection
  • Black Film Festival Atlanta!
    Atlanta, GA
    United States
    September 29, 2019
    Official Selection
Director Biography - Tracy Bishop

A native of New Orleans, Louisiana, Tracy Bishop is an award-winning TV promotion producer with decades of experience. He earned his bachelors degree in Media Production at Florida State University, and parlayed an internship at CNN into a twelve-plus year career in network news promotion. Some of his accomplishments include work on campaigns to launch and promote websites, international newscasts and the CNNj network in Tokyo, Japan.

With the advent of Fox News and MSNBC, the nature of TV journalism began to change. Context was out, conflict was king and Tracy found himself at a crossroad. One day, he set out on the disastrous road less traveled some would call their search for a new career path. In many ways, it was an incredibly stupid decision. In one, it was brilliant and the result is Mercy's Kennel: The Documentary. (Note: I never produced a documentary before, but I promoted quite a few on TV, and it looked simple enough...right? Ha!)

About that new career path? Tracy is finally doing what he loves best...producing promos for movies and TV shows at a growing national broadcast television network. The irony is strong with this one.

Add Director Biography
Director Statement

Broken Dogs. Broken Hearts. Broken Promises. Broken Relationships. Broken Cars. Broken Computers. Broken Cameras. Broken Phones. What didn't we break? Did I mention that we're broke? The next time anybody hears me say, "Let's make a documentary!" with no cash, no funding, no cameras, no equipment and no viable edit system in place, please come slap me!

Most of all, I sincerely want to thank everyone who gave and gave and are still giving to help make this crazy dream come true. You have all been very patient, and I hope you are as proud of our achievement as I am. Woof!