Black Filmmakers and the Future: A Conversation With Michael “Boogievision” Pinckney

About 7 years ago Veteran Filmmaker, Michael ‘Boogievision” Pinckney went down a rabbit hole to learn about domestic trafficking because he was unaware. When he discovered it he noticed that there wasn’t a wide spread of conversations surrounding this hard-to-talk-about topic we know as domestic trafficking.

The conversations mostly were International, and overseas. So when Boogie discovered that there was trafficking happening here in The United States, it had a big impact on him, and the rest is history.

Trafficked: Survivor Stories Directed by Boogie follows the real-life accounts of three women who have escaped the horrors of sex trafficking. Through interviews and re-enactments, the survivors take us inside the dark and dirty world where sex is a commodity and money is the only concern. The film showcases the support and advocacy of human trafficking organizations as we see the journeys of women who have escaped and those who are still trapped. Featuring both open and closed cases, “Trafficked: Survivor Stories” is a powerful and eye-opening look at the disturbing reality of human trafficking, told through the voices of the survivors themselves.

Storytelling has been a passion of yours since growing up in Brooklyn. We applaud all of your success and hard work on your upcoming project Trafficked. What does it mean to you personally and professionally to create this powerful piece which includes inspiring stories of three women who have survived the horrors of sex trafficking?

Boogie: As a man helping in this fight and as a filmmaker, the first thing I did was I wrote a movie called “The Trade” about sex trafficking. The movie is about a young black girl and a photojournalist that joins forces to help each other find their loved ones that were trafficked. Then that led me to a docu-series about sex trafficking which is ‘Trafficked”.

Listening to the stories and doing this research, I was like it will be amazing to have a docu-series that tells the stories and reenacts parts of their stories sort of like America’s Most Wanted.

Does bringing awareness to this difficult topic become overwhelming?

Boogie: The posture that I typically take is that I’m a vessel. I’m always a vessel, as a writer, as a director, and as a storyteller. So it’s never really about me, it’s about how I tell these women’s stories and get it to the people. It’s not my stories, it’s their stories. I think about how can I best assist them to tell this story.

It was tough, but we had to be a safe space and I built a trust level that is necessary in order to really do a project like this.

What are your aspirations for this project now that it’s complete?

Boogie: The film is completed and we’re preparing to talk to distributors, try to sell the film and find the right home for it. That’s very important. There is power in the project and hopefully, it goes from this documentary feature to a series because we have so many more stories to tell all around the country. The work isn’t done.

What do you think keeps you motivated to stick with this demanding industry?

Boogie: Ultimately, if I were to drill it down to the core of that question it will be God, period because that is a driving force that keeps me going in business. I stay centered and I feel like ministry is my purpose. Media is my ministry. I was put here to tell stories, and to give voice to the voiceless. I can’t stop because it is my assignment. I have to complete my assignment. That’s how I look at it because we all need to have a greater purpose for what we want to do, especially in this business, because it’s too hard.

You’re also a part of 6 Minutes to Glory: The HBCU Band Experience on the Aspire network which premiered on June 11th. What did your involvement entail and what was it like to be a part of that experience?

Boogie: I directed the Docuseries and it was amazing. I didn’t go to an HBCU even though I’ve always wanted to. Growing up in Brooklyn, my family didn’t have a lot of money. So I wasn’t traveling away to HBCU to go to college, because we didn’t really have money like that. But I was able to go to college because I played basketball and I got a scholarship. Oddly enough, the college I went to was a big film school, and that’s when I got into filmmaking.

When they approached me to direct the documentary, I jumped at the chance to go and document the marching band on HBCU campuses. I interviewed the band, interviewed the band leaders, and got to be a part of that culture that I always wanted to be a part of. I felt like I was an honorary student at an HBCU when I was at Alabama State, North Carolina, and Norfolk State. I also felt so welcomed like I was a part of the HBCU experience. The show is doing amazing on Aspire TV.

What are you most excited about for the rest of the year?

Boogie: I wrote a book series called Dreamhaus that is in post-production for the film version of the book. It’s about a Black woman with multiple personalities. I wrote the script, then I wrote the book, and then we shot the film. I’m really passionate about it. It’s a three-book series. I’ve always wanted to write books.

The three books of Boogievision Presents Dreamhaus are Éléanor’s Story, Raven’s Revenge, and Sweet Jasmine. The books are in the thriller genre, I love thrillers. By doing this I could really peel back the layers of characters with mental health and multiple personalities. I was always fascinated by one of my favorite films Mommie Dearest and that dark story.

I’m excited and hopefully, we will be done with the film before the year is out. The first book will be coming out in the fall.

Any final and vital mentions about any projects our readers should be on the lookout for?

Boogie: I’m one of the writers on season three of Terror Lake Drive on ALLBLK. I love the project. I’ve been friends with the showrunner Jerry Lamothe for years, and we’ve been wanting to work together forever. We finally got a chance. He called me up to come on board and I’m really proud of that. I look forward to people seeing it when it’s done.

Thank you for your time and for allowing us to interview you Boogie. The Hustle Continues.

More on Michael Boogievision Pinckney

Michael got his start as an assistant director on films such as “Inside Man” and “Precious” as well as TV shows like “Broad City” and “Law & Order CI” before transitioning to writing and directing. Michael has written features, television pilots, and a variety of digital series. His feature film debut was distributed by Lionsgate and he has directed a variety of digital series from “Sole Kings” for BRIC TV and “Black Actress” for Issa Rae Productions He Co-Produced BET’s Docu-Series “From The Bottom Up” and wrote and directed “The Trade” the Award-Winning film about sex trafficking. Recently he directed the pilot for “Blue Flame”, a new series about an all-female undercover police unit and film “God Bless You”, which has gotten over 2 Million views on Youtube. In addition, he just wrapped on his fourth feature film “Dreamhaus”, which is based on his book series.

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