The Color Of Skin

The Color of Skin is a documentary that explores what it is like for African-Americans who have been brutalized, harassed, mistreated, disrespected and discriminated against by white men. It shows the alarming reality for many African-Americans through the use of archival footage, juxtaposing past and present, to emphasize the frequency in which bigotry and hatred occur against this community in the United States.

  • Jessica Scott
  • Jessica Scott
  • Project Type:
    Documentary, Short, Student
  • Runtime:
    20 minutes
  • Completion Date:
    June 25, 2019
  • Production Budget:
    1,000 USD
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
    Digital, Archival Footage
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
  • Detroit Black Film Festival
    United States
    September 18, 2020
    Honorable Mention
  • National Black Film Festival
    United States
    Nominated for Best short Documentary
Director Biography - Jessica Scott

Jessica Scott is an Emmy-nominated producer and an Award-winning independent filmmaker who was born and raised on the East Coast. She now calls Chicago home, where she has lived for the past 15 years, and where she earned her Bachelor’s degree in Journalism from Columbia College Chicago and her Master’s degree in Fine Arts from Northwestern University. Working as a video journalist lead her to become interested in directing films and now she merges the two together to make journalistic-style documentaries.

Scott’s current film The Color of Skin (2019, 20 min)—a documentary that explores what it is like for African-Americans, who have been brutalized, harassed, mistreated, disrespected and discriminated against by white men has been selected to 11 film festivals and awarded Honorable Mention by the Detroit Black Film Festival and was nominated for Best Short Documentary by the National Black Film Festival in 2020.

Her film Sneakers: It’s Complicated (2017, 9 min)—a film about sneakers and its impact on music, art, fashion and the connection between Chicago and Air Jordans. This film was influenced by Scott’s love for sneakers and her obsession with the Air Jordan V; speaking of which, took her 30 years to get. This film has been screened at the Hip Hop Film Festival in Harlem, NY and Jack Daniel’s Gentleman Jack Real to Reel film festival in Chicago, IL.

She directed and edited her first documentary, Snitches Get Stitches: The Code of the Streets (2015, 4 min)—a documentary that explores the unspoken code of the streets in the Black community. It has been viewed almost 40,000 times on YouTube.

Scott hopes to make documentaries that will provoke thought, create change in her community and encourage people to make a difference in other people’s lives. She believes that she can influence her community by telling truthful and compelling stories, which can lead to positive change and community outreach. She is eager to show the world her people from her community through her lens.

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Director Statement

“If surviving lions don’t tell their stories, the hunters will get all the credit,”
• African proverb.

I am a filmmaker of color, whose work is driven by the need to tell positive and truthful stories about black and Native Americans. I believe it is vital to the communities I belong to that I represent them in a positive way. As a filmmaker of color, telling my own stories is necessary because my films address issues, attitudes and experiences specific to my people, and it is important to me that my films focus on positive representations, personal identity and cultural expressions.

In particular, most of my films deal with experiences in the black communities ranging from engaging and uplifting portrayals of ordinary people to critiques of systematic racism and oppression.

As a documentary filmmaker, my style is eclectic. I try to make films that are personal to me, yet general enough for people to relate to my personal struggles and triumphs. One of my goals as an independent filmmaker is to continue to make films that are humorous, informational, socially impactful and inspirational. I want to make a difference not only to the communities to which I belong, but to everyone who is interested in positive change.