Hold the Air is a story about black police officers. When Derek Chauvin kneeled on George Floyd’s neck in the summer of 2020, it changed the landscape of America. It was a political firestorm. And the first question we asked the officers was, “what did it look like through your eyes?”
The Austin police department was defunded. Officers left law enforcement in droves. They felt overworked and unappreciated. It was in this circumstance former Navy man, Charles Wesley, entered the academy and, Officers Jermaine Kilgore, Brandon Brinson, and Mike Rhone worked day after day.
Who are these men and the other black officers we hope to meet? Why did they endure? What do they think about the metanarrative in our culture that a war wages between police and black people? How did the police treat them or their families growing up? What do they hope to accomplish by being officers? Why do new cadets choose now of all times to become an officer? And what’s it like putting on the badge every day?
Hold the Air is police terminology for “stay off the radio.” When a tense situation arises, an officer will call sign, “Hold the air,” and this lets the dispatcher know to send all other radio communications to secondary channels until the situation is under control. In our film, we want to give these officers the floor to speak their minds.
So, hold the air.
This is the teaser trailer for Hold the Air, a documentary film project in progress.
Current Update 11/1/22 :
What we need to finish this film is permission to film officers doing police work. This means ride-alongs, meetings, event security, etc. Chief Chacon knows what we need, but right now he is barring us from filming any police work whatsoever. Hold the Air is about officers’ personal and professional lives, and without access to filming officers at work, we are missing half the story.