The sad and senseless case of Sandra Bland is one that will be seared into the national consciousness for many years to come. It has been almost four, since the vibrant, outspoken, 28-year-old, Black woman was found hanging in a solitary South Texas jail cell. Just three days prior to her death, she had been arrested following a not-so routine traffic stop by a quick-tempered state trooper, Brian Encinia, that quickly spiraled out of control.
Within a week of the budding activist's death, HBO reached out to the Academy Award-nominated documentary filmmakers, Davis and Heilbroner, to see if they were interested in helming a project on the subject. The long-married creative partners moved swiftly into action, contacting Bland's family in Chicago with an offer to help find out what happened and tell a story authentic to the Sandy they knew and loved.
Three years later, Say Her Name: The Life and Death of Sandra Bland premiered at the 2018 Tribeca Film Festival to critical acclaim, and also made the rounds at the Chicago International Film Festival, the Nashville Film Festival, the St. Louis Film Festival and the Ridgefield Independent Film Festival, where it won the "Best of the Fest" award.
Watch Say Her Name: The Life and Death of Sandra Bland on HBO.