Synopsis: Destiny, a smart and determined teen, who is the first college bound member of her family, accidentally discovers on graduation day that her tuition money has been stolen – a secret kept by her positive mustard seed faith believing grandmother, Sarah. Determined to honor one of the proudest moment of their family history, Sarah and Destiny attend a surprise family barbeque celebrating Destiny’s accomplishment, while withholding news of the stolen funds. Sarah unsuccessfully pretends to be normal, while Destiny discreetly attempts to find solutions, causing family and friends to speculate that something is wrong.
MARIAH ROBINSON (DESTINY)
AMANDA MICHELLE SMITH (ANGELA)
In 1945, my grandmother, Emma, and her 13 siblings were sharecroppers and rented a small three-room house on the property where they worked in North Carolina. It was a family rule that each child would only attend school through the 8th grade so they could work the land full-time. My grandmother hated this rule. She was a top student and favored by her teachers who also advocated for her to continue school. She tried relentlessly to change her parents’ minds but was unsuccessful. Years later, she fought for her youngest brother to stay in school and won. He was the first in her family to finish high school.
Fifty years later, as a pre-teen, I attended my grandmother’s high school graduation and was able to witness a dream deferred fulfilled. She obtained her G.E.D. at the age of 65. After learning of her story, I knew that I would never take my education for granted. I went on to be the first in my family to graduate college and obtain a master’s degree.
Destiny’s Road is a film inspired by my family history and personal experience of being a first generation college kid from a working-class family. One important theme that I desire to convey in this film is how poverty impacts the worldview of those who come from underprivileged backgrounds, especially when it comes to education. We see this in the film through Destiny’s environment and conversations with her relatives and close friends. Destiny represents her family’s beacon of hope for change and she subconsciously knows it. This is what drives her to break away from a family cycle of poverty, teenage pregnancy, and substance abuse.
Additional themes explored in the film are faith and forgiveness, two ideas that Destiny resists. We see her struggle with these values that have not changed her family’s condition. As the director, I plan to visually explore these themes through visual symbols, lighting, and Destiny’s relationship with her mother and grandmother.
Southern culture is rich and charming. Cinematically, I will explore characteristics of the south through location, set decorating, food, wardrobe, music and character interactions. Similar to the African proverb “It takes a village to raise a child”; this same notion applies to Black southern culture. We see this through the family relationships and how they rally together during tough times.
Kameishia Wooten is a passionate Director, Writer, and Creative Producer who creates provoking, inclusive, socially impactful stories for TV & Film. Most recently, Kameishia’s short film, Destiny’s Road, received Best Short at the 2020 Black Truth Film Festival and Honorable Mention at the 2020 Queen Palm International Film Festival.
Kameishia was selected as a Women In Film/Sundance Financing Intensive Fellow for her feature screenplay, Destiny’s Road. As a current participant in the Women In Film mentorship program, She was also selected to take part in the 2021 Alliance of Women Director’s Black Directors Initiative.
Originally from Goldsboro, North Carolina, Kameishia earned her Master’s in Film from Columbia College Chicago and is a proud UNC Chapel Hill undergrad alum. She got her start in the business working as a legal professional for major studios such as Paramount Pictures and Netflix.