"It was important to make sure people didn't forget those moments"
The #MannequinChallenge has swept the Internet nationwide, with everyone from students at a busy school assembly to Beyoncé showing what their lives looked like in a stock still moment.
However, the viral movement has gotten the political treatment thanks to a powerful new video that uses the challenge to illustrate the instances of police violence against minorities that have led to calls for more transparency and police reform across America in recent years..
The chilling minute-long short film, which was made in part with the upcoming film “Black in Blue,” recreates the heart-wrenching fatalities of Philando Castile, Sandra Bland, and Alton Sterling, while also referencing Trayvon Martin, Colin Kaepernick and many of the peaceful protestors of the Black Lives Matter movement.
Director Simone Shepherd, who rose to fame as a humorous Vine star, told TIME that she felt compelled to use her large social media following to bring awareness to the racial profiling and police violence that the black community faces.
“Black Lives Matter is an issue that’s important to me,” she said. “I felt that it was important to make sure that people didn’t forget those moments using this very viral movement that’s happening with the mannequin challenge.”
Watch the full video below.