Toward the end of his battle with kidney cancer, William Richard Guy filmed himself being interviewed over the span of six VHS tapes. The tapes were meant to serve as a record of his life for those he was leaving behind. He was born in the small town of Waterloo, Iowa, and soon left with his mother for bustling Kansas City. He got married at 18 and had two children. Soon after, he moved to Washington, D.C., and fought for civil rights, before heading north, where he had three more children in an idyllic enclave of rural Canada.
For twenty years, one of those children, Sol Guy, couldn’t bring himself to watch these recordings. Only in the process of creating his film The Death of My Two Fathers did Sol Guy finally confront his father’s tapes, and with this project, he continues the tradition, using the tapes as an entry point for recounting his father’s story—and his own—directly to his two teenage kids. It’s a work of highly personal filmmaking, but as the story unfolds, this powerful film becomes an expansive reflection on family, loss, and the experience of being black in America. —Cara Cusumano
*Part of the Juneteenth programming
Sol Guy’s passion is to explore art and social change. He is a founding member of the hip hop group Rascalz, a TV show creator, a film director and producer, an author, and an artist.