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A phenomenon like “Hamilton” has a way of changing the careers of everyone involved. Doors open; offers flood in. In the case of Daveed Diggs, who won a Tony for his dual roles as the Marquis de Lafayette and Thomas Jefferson in the hip-hop Broadway musical, it meant finally getting to make his dream movie project, “Blindspotting,” a script he’d been developing with his longtime creative partner Rafael Casal well before he met Lin-Manuel Miranda.

Set in Diggs’ hometown of Oakland, “Blindspotting” features him in his first leading screen role, playing an ex-con with three days left on parole, whose volatile best friend (portrayed by newcomer Casal) could jeopardize his freedom.

This incredibly timely cultural powder keg of a movie about race relations in contemporary America will kick off the dramatic competition at Sundance, premiering Jan. 18, the opening day of the festival. It will be the first time U.S. distributors get a look at the low-budget film, financed by Culver City-based indie production company Snoot Entertainment. To direct the feature, Diggs and Casal tapped first-timer Carlos López Estrada, who had masterminded several of the pair’s more ambitious video projects.

Enlisting their musical talents, Diggs, a biracial rapper, and Casal, a white-Hispanic spoken-word artist, use the film to address the everyday racial tensions and class differences aggravated by gentrification.

In addition to its simmering socioeconomics, “Blindspotting” also serves as a powerful indictment of the broken dynamic between police and people of color, both in Oakland specifically and in America at large.

“The best way to make a piece about something like race is to understand that you’re not an authority on the subject,” Diggs says. “The thing we are an authority on is our vision of what Oakland is, so we let that dictate everything.”

True to the way hyperliterate, politically engaged Bay Area residents express themselves, Casal’s and Diggs’ characters find it possible to riff and sometimes even joke about such weighty subjects in everyday speech. “Because [something like police shootings] is so normalized for them, it’s no longer a serious subject to bring up,” Casal explains. “It’s like bringing up the weather. You’re not complaining about the cold, you’re just stating that it is.”

Diggs was living four blocks from the Fruitvale BART station when Oscar Grant was murdered there in 2009, which inevitably filtered into the screenplay — though “Blindspotting” doesn’t presume to have the solutions to such complex social problems, which was one of the things that excited López Estrada about directing the film.

“I think the movie asks a lot of very direct, complicated and sometimes uncomfortable questions,” says López Estrada. “And although all the characters in the movie have really strong points of view, they’re leaving it up to you to decide.”


Here’s a short film I wrote, shot, and edited in two weeks for a film competition. It didn’t win, but I’m still pretty proud of how it turned out. 

we know plankton and krabs have been playing poker together for 15 years

we also know this episode aired before the episode where pearl turned 16

while the non-continuity & non-chronological order of the series means that assuming that pearl was 15 in welcome to the chum bucket is a fool’s gamble - it’s reasonable enough that if there is an episode about her turning 16, her character was likely conceptualized as being 15 years old prior to that point. but either she was 15 or she was 16 in welcome to the chum bucket … and either way, that’s about as long as pearl’s been alive.

we also know that pearl is krabs’ biological daughter … through a combination of facts … and were given reason to believe that something happened to the mother of his child shortly after pearl’s birth that made him depressed. she’s not around anymore and no longer apart of their lives in any way shape or form.

we also know plankton and krabs were childhood best friends, going on to have an on-again-off-again friendship for years prior to spongebob getting a job at the krusty krab … and the two are shown to occasionally have moments where they truly, genuinely care about each other deep down, despite the rivalry …

conclusion: plankton might have started playing poker with krabs to cheer him up after the death of his wife