In 'The Bond', Jahmil Eady Tells Her Mother's Story of Being Pregnant and Incarcerated
A still from The Bond courtesy of NFMLA

“The Bond” tells a story that’s all too close to home for writer-director Jahmil Eady: the short film was inspired by her mother’s own experience being pregnant while in the criminal justice system.

The film follows an incarcerated pregnant woman who, determined to keep her baby, applies to a prison nursery program — but the harsh environment and past addictions threaten her dreams.

The Inspiration for ‘The Bond’

“‘The Bond’ is inspired by my mom’s experience giving birth to me while she was incarcerated. So this happened years ago, but I started learning more and more that this issue was an ongoing issue of shackling incarcerated pregnant women,” Eady told NFMLA’s Danny DeLillo in an interview you can watch below.

Eady felt it was an important issue to highlight, especially considering the current “rise of mass incarceration, the criminalization of addiction — that’s what happened with my mom — and the criminalization of poverty,” she said.

“We’re hearing about the war on reproductive justice and reproductive rights. We’re hearing that doctors can now be incarcerated and people who are just looking for reproductive rights and freedom, they can now be incarcerated. And so this issue is very close to my heart, and I realized this population that’s usually you know invisible is now growing… I just wanted to bring attention to this community of women.”

Watch the interview with Jahmil Eady, writer and director of “The Bond”:

Eady hails from both New York City and Charleston, South Carolina. She earned her B.A. in media studies from Pomona College, studied film in Prague, Czech Republic, and is currently completing her MFA in directing at UCLA. She has worked as an associate producer on projects for Oprah Winfrey Network, Viceland, and Discovery Network.

A Black, female member of the LGBTQ community, Eady tells socially-minded stories using a genre-blending style. She is the Princess Grace Foundation’s 2022 Roger Moore Honoree.

“The Bond,” a Film Independent artist development project, raised $26,000 on Kickstarter and screened at festivals like BronzeLens, where it won the Best Student Award, Atlanta Film Festival, where it won the Audience Award, and Urbanworld, where it won the Creative Producing Award.

“The Bond” was part of NFMLA’s March film festival celebrating up-and-coming female talent in front of and behind the camera. The program included two shorts programs, along with award-winning filmmaker Dawn Jones Redstone’s debut feature.

Also Read: Making a Film? MovieMaker Production Services Can Double Your Budget

The day began with InFocus: Female Cinema Shorts I, a collection of films that explore motherhood, fertility, birth, and reproductive choice from a wide range of perspectives. The programming continued with the Los Angeles premiere of “Mother of Color,” the first feature from award-winning writer-director Dawn Jones Redstone. The night concluded with InFocus: Female Cinema Shorts II, an eclectic mix of short-form work from emerging talent, whose stories explored body image, intimate relationships, work and its many struggles.

NFMLA showcases films by filmmakers of all backgrounds throughout the year in addition to its special InFocus programming, which celebrates diversity, inclusion, and region. All filmmakers are welcome and encouraged to submit their projects which will be considered for all upcoming NFMLA Festivals, regardless of the InFocus programming. 

Main Image: A still from The Bond courtesy of NFMLA