In America, ‘Driving While Black’ is dangerous. In fact, Black drivers are 20% more likely to be stopped and searched by police, and three times more likely to be killed by officers during encounters. To bring awareness to these issues, Courageous Conversation Global Foundation (CCGF) is unveiling its first ever vehicle at the Detroit Auto Show, called the DWB. Short for Driving While Black, DWB was designed to shine a light on the double standard in policing of Black people, with a car that protects Black drivers.
Created in partnership with Omnicom Collective agencies, Goodby, Silverstein & Partners and Critical Mass, the campaign addresses police encounters during routine traffic stops through a vehicle equipped with features designed to save Black lives. Like transparent doors, so there’s no suspicion of what the driver is in possession of. Or a “10&2” steering wheel that keeps hands visible at all times. And they even eliminated the trunk, leaving officers with nothing to search or seize.
Launching today, just a day before the auto show officially begins, the car — which lives as a digital CAD-model, built in the innovative Unreal 5 gaming engine — will be released with a world-premiere film (narrated by Craig Mitchell of the The Book of Hov Jay-Z’s exhibit), an interactive car website (DWBAuto.com) and an AR activation in Detroit, to grab the attention of car aficionados and leaders in the auto industry.
“No, the car isn’t real, but its design speaks to our reality as Black people in this country,” said Glenn Singleton, founder and chairman of CCGF. “I wish we could design every car brand, make and model in this way, because if you’re Black and behind the wheel, you can become a statistic, simply because of your race. It matters less what, where and/or how you drive. At Courageous Conversation Global Foundation, we hope this campaign will spark action and compel people to get involved in transforming the problematic relationship shared between police and Black Americans; whether we are driving or just being…Black.”
The short film unveils DWB — which is inspired by the car Castile was murdered in — like any other new car, with a cinematic and luxurious launch video showcasing a variety of features, but the difference being each modification is inspired by events and occurrences that directly affect Black drivers. When users visit the website, they’ll see every bit of the car with a 360-degree interactive experience. In addition, 7 of the 11 features will be linked to the real tragedy that inspired the modification.
The Mill digitally crafted the vehicle’s design, bolstered by their state of the art VFX techniques. Under the direction of Andrew Proctor, they further elevated the vehicle’s aesthetics, embodying the DWB campaign’s core concept.
“The car itself is absurd, but we want to make sure the film, and website treated this like the car was real,” said Rony Castor, GS&P creative director. “In order for people to know and feel this issue, creating a car was necessary.”
The experience culminates in Detroit with a stunt that allows users to experience the car through a QR code, where they dive into DWB through a 360-degree mobile experience, so festival goers can experience the car like they would if it was physically at the auto show.
“Driving while Black often means you get profiled and pulled over by police, putting your life on the line. To illuminate these issues, we take you on a tour of tragic stories,” said Critical Mass Executive creative director Steve Savic. “Our hope is to give people a glimpse into how it feels to drive while Black and spark a conversation that promotes change.”
“There’s a double standard Black people face when being stopped by police that almost nobody sees. DWB illustrates the reality so many of us face while driving.” said Anthony O’Neill, GS&P creative director. “We have a duty, responsibility and obligation to tell these stories in the most real and provocative way we can think of.”
The car won’t be built, because as the film states, “a car can’t solve the problem. Only we can do that,” through voting for police reform – on local and federal levels. But after exploring DWBauto.com, people are invited to learn more about how CCGF can bring support and healing to communities affected by these violent incidents. And with the information they gain can in turn, can get involved, and take action.
“The model makes me think about the fear for my life I had each time the police stopped me,” said Craig Mitchell, who lended his voice to the campaign just a month after narrating the acclaimed The Book of Hov Jay-Z exhibit in NYC. “My parents gave me ‘The Talk’ when I started driving in my hometown of St. Louis. I am blessed none of my traffic stops ever escalated, but hundreds of thousands of black drivers throughout history can’t say that.”
Genres: Visual VFX
Categories: Corporate, Social and PSAs, Awareness
Thu, 14 Sep 2023 10:38:00 GMT