“If Will Smith can play Dr. Omalu why can’t Zoe Saldana play Nina Simone?” Best thing I’ve seen all day. I’m a filmmaker, I know the feeling of selecting the actor that you think will portray the role the best based on their performance. WHY can’t we give the film a chance? Maybe, just maybe, the director and everyone involved felt like Zoe was the best actress for the job regardless of her skin tone. Crazy concept, I know. If you think it will be trash, don’t support it. Simple. But to assume that it will be horrible based on the single fact that Zoe Saldana looks nothing like Nina Simone is ridiculous. I’m here for this film and I’m here for artistic creativity and freedom. If you think you can do better, by all means, go out and make a better movie using a darker skinned actress. 🙂
I think Zoe will do a fine job and I will be supporting the movie so that I can see for myself if she can pull it off under the enormous amount of negative energy surround this film from it’s inception. Come for me if you must 🙂
My latest short film Corazón has been featured in a wonderful newsletter called Tomorrow Looks Bright http://www.tomorrowlooksbright.com/. Via the TLB website:
Tomorrow Looks Bright is a weekly newsletter that curates high quality impactful projects and products from around the internet with the intent to showcase the bountiful creative energy of Black women creators. The idea of designer, Kristy Tillman, Tomorrow Looks Bright Weekly provides the combinatorial link to learn about all of the amazing things Black women are doing and creating that remains scattered across the web. The core ethos behind this project is to galvanize our collective (and those who wish to advance us) around a common creative force to provide support and awareness to sustain our ventures.
Corazón, along with short films Black Girl in Suburbia and In Pursuit are featured in the latest newsletter #17 which can be viewed here: http://us11.campaign-archive2.com/?u=ac41ea43294acc5e7daf818e2&id=646ee73ccf
Be sure to sign up for the TLB newsletter here.
Nelson George turned the lens on Misty Copeland for his film A Ballerina’s Tale. The film centers around Misty, the first African American woman to become a principal dancer at New York’s American Ballet Theatre. The film is now being shown on PBS and Netflix. Check out this interview with Nelson about the film with PBS Independent Lens.
With all the chatter about the lack of diversity among those other tv and film awards ceremonies, I sure wish WE would support and promote things that are for us by us a little bit more. We do have options and these alternatives should be celebrated and recognized for recognizing US. The Imagenation Revolution Awards celebrate Black excellence, artistry and activism. The official awards ceremony honoring Hill Harper, Ava DuVerna and Melissa Harris Perry to name a few, takes place at the SVA Theatre in NYC on February 10th. Tickets can be purchased here.
THIS IS HUGE and the details are still being finalized but THIS IS HUGE. I’ve been keeping up with the back story of this film which is basically that actor, writer and now director Nate Parker decided that he wouldn’t take another acting role until he could play Nat Turner. He decided to create the role he wanted, the way he wanted. He spent years working on a script and invested $100,000 of his own money to get the project going. Although he initially couldn’t get the support or funding he needed for the film and was even told by distributors that people overseas did NOT want to see black faces on their screen (I can’t remember where I read this but when I do I’ll update with a link) he pressed on. He began scouting locations and hiring production crews. Eventually, he got a few additional investors and finally got enough money to complete the project. The film debuted at Sundance this week and received so much praise that Fox Searchlight put up $17.5 million to acquire the rights. Although nothing has been finalized, this is a huge deal! With the current climate around the film industry, this is proof that WE don’t need their award shows, acclaim or even their money. When WE have stories that we want to tell our way, WE should come together and do just that. They end up paying us for the final product anyway. HA!
Read the full story here: http://www.ew.com/article/2016/01/26/sundance-birth-of-a-nation-fox-searchlight