We bring you a 2-part conversation with Emmy Award-winning filmmaker Pete Nicks. He is the chief storyteller of Open’hood, an Oakland-based non-profit organization. Story telling is one of the best ways to connect with your community shares Nicks.

This San Francisco Bay area-based filmmaker is making a trilogy of films on Oakland, California. Each film deals with 3 different institutions of the city: the healthcare system, the police force and the education system. 

The first film was called The Waiting Room and The Force is the second film the trilogy. In the The Force Nicks takes you behind the scenes of the Oakland Police Department that has been under federal monitoring for nearly a decade. The Oakland police department was tasked with bringing about reforms shares Nicks. The film highlights how it went about bringing the reforms and the numerous challenges it faced. The question is: did the police department succeed in implementing these reforms? You will have to watch the film to find out.

Nicks grew up near Boston and became interested in discovering stories at a very young age. Originally he wanted to be a writer and studied literature at Howard University. He then changed course and became a filmmaker. He studied documentary filmmaking at University of California, Berkeley.

One of the early films Nicks made was based on his own story of how he became a drug addict and spent a year in federal prison.He considers himself to be lucky that he got support from his family and friends during a troubling time in his life.”People wanted to be part of my recovery,” shares Nicks. “We are never as alone as we think we are,” he adds.

In case you missed, here is Part-1 of our interview with Nicks.

This 2-part interview with Nicks is part of our series of conversations with filmmakers and actors.

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