“They point the fingers at us. But when the shit hits the fan, who do you think these monkeys are going to call?”
It’s a provocative line from a new film in development called PUSHED, an in-your-face exploration of what happens when a routine traffic stop goes horribly awry. Written and directed by Carter Johnson, the trailer for PUSHED feels hauntingly familiar, especially at a time when the shooting of civilians but the police seems to be reaching an all-time high. Yet, the trailer for PUSHED shows us that the topic of how police and civilians deal with the fallout of a mishandled shooting is anything but simple.
“Their black lives matter? No, all lives matter, especially a police officers." - Officer Ian Cobane, PUSHED
PUSHED is about Darnel Watkins (Devielle Johnson), a young man recently released from prison who is attempting to redeem his life. Optimism quickly degenerates when Darnell’s brother (Aaron Washington) is killed by the hands of the police during a routine traffic stop. Darnel is pitted against his old nemesis Officer Ian Cobane (Martyn Krouse). Darnel decides to wage a campaign of vengeance against the police and becomes public enemy number one.
The trailer was created to see whether there is an audience for a film of this depth and magnitude.
“Some people are on board,” says Johnson, 42, about the initial reception of the film’s teaser. “But there also have been mixed reactions. Some have met the trailer with silence.”
“It's an illusion? Tell these kids on the corner. Tell them that. - Darnel, PUSHED
But this silence is exactly why Johnson, a former stock broker and banker, feels this story should be made into a feature film.
“This film is going beyond the dialogue…beyond the protests,” says Johnson, who has been working on this project since 2009. “This isn’t nationally-based stuff. We’ve always been in a tough place in this country and have become entrenched in our own spaces which is very problematic. The question is, what’s the collateral damage on both sides? This story will create pause.”