Traveling While Black

Directed by Roger Ross Williams

Key Collaborators: Félix Lajeunesse, Paul Raphaël
Producers: Ayesha Nadarajah, Jihan Robinson, Lina Srivastava
Executive Producers: Joe Lovett, Bonnie Nelson Schwartz
Country: USA
Runtime: 18 minutes

Academy Award winner Roger Ross Williams’ finely observed and crafted visit to Ben’s Chili Bowl, a famed DC restaurant, transforms a central community locale into a symbolic safe space. African American visitors, some of whom lived through segregation, sit and share a moment of honest discussion, reflecting on their experiences of restricted movement and race relations in the U.S. These stories strengthen bonds among communities by bringing hidden histories into our modern collective consciousness. Confronting the way we understand and talk about race in America, this virtual reality documentary immerses the viewer in the long history of restriction of movement for black Americans and the creation of safe spaces in our communities.