• Director

    Symone Baptiste

  • Country, Year, Length

    United States, 2019, 17 min

  • Category

    Short Narrative

  • Format

    Digital (screening) – RED Dragon RAW 4k (shooting)

  • Festival Year



Cast: Brodie Reed, Ellington Wells, David Gborie, Alice Wetterlund, Biniam Bizuneh, Josh Fadem, Opeyemi Olagbaju, Janelle James
Crew: Producers: Symone Baptiste, Michelle Zei – Screenwriters: Ellington Wells, Brodie Reed

Sixteen Thousand Dollars is a narrative comedy short film that imagines a world in which a struggling black college grad wakes up to find that reparations have finally been paid to descendants of slaves in America. With this new found capital, he will decide how best to spend his reparations, totaling a mere $16,000. Receiving reparations opens up old wounds of slavery, Jim Crow, and systemic oppression that he must evaluate on his journey.

Symone Baptiste is a Director, Writer, Producer and Comedy Booker based in LA. She currently produces and books a roster of live shows including The New Negroes (Comedy Central). Her core mission is to create content that reflects a wide range of diverse perspectives. She creates stories that elevate underrepresented voices, finding the humor in our differences while also speaking to social justice issues.

Filmmaker’s Note

As we approach the 2020 presidential race, the subject of reparations has become a major talking point among many Democratic primary hopefuls. So, we asked ourselves, what would reparations look like in 2020? We’re going to take audiences on a satirical journey, the “worst case scenario for reparations.” This project discusses the nuances of who would get a check and who wouldn’t – touching upon the incredibly overlooked global effects of the African Diaspora and the downfalls of Black capitalism – participating in a system in which at it’s very foundation was meant to oppress us. This film is very timely and important in our current political climate, begging to start a dialogue around reparations, led by descendants of slaves globally.