Executive Producer / Cast
Q: What was your first impression of the script for The Harimaya Bridge?
A: I was very fascinated by the story and its depiction of the relationship between an African American man and Japanese people. The kinds of themes present in the script are difficult to put into projects made in the U.S. Yet here it was done in both an accessible and entertaining way.
Q: Why is it so difficult to get such a film made in America?
A: These are the toughest things to get done, projects of this nature. They risk taking us out of our comfort zone which we have, and they explore new dynamics and relationships. This kind of cross-cultural expression or reality exists, but we never play it out (in the arts) because it confuses people. It's not a part of the program, and not part of the accepted pre-conditions that have been placed upon people's existence.
Q: You are participating not only as an actor but also as an executive producer. What was the biggest factor that got you to participate so deeply in the film?
A: For years Ben (Guillory) and I have looked for projects that express certain themes about relationships among people. I was aiming to participate in a project that shows real connections among people with our surroundings in society. I felt that Aaron's script had a great potential to bring people together, no matter what cultural differences they have.
Often my existence as an African-American is confined to a specific paradigm which is played over and over again in all of our cultural workceven to the point of how we see ourselves. I've been fortunate enough to do big movies like Lethal Weapon and The Color Purple, but the important thing is how you create the kind of work that resonates in a different way. How you create bridges. I felt this project does that.
Q: What would you like your audience to take away from the film?
A: The idea that it's not governors and public officials who change the world, but the thoughts and feelings of everyone in society. I would like this film to be one of the triggers for people to think about that. Furthering this idea is a significant part of my work.