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The TV shows and Black Movies we can’t Wait to SEE

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A of black-oriented movies and television shows debuted at the American Black Film Festival earlier this month, celebrating the brilliance and creativity of black art.

There are a lot of black films and TV shows to look forward to this summer.

Here’s a list of six must-see productions showcasing the talent of black casts, producers, directors, and writers.

INSECURE (SEASON 3)

On the 18th of June, HBO released the first trailer for the highly anticipated third season of Insecure. Revealing that Issa, played by lead actress and show creator Issa Rae, may finally be over her ex Lawrence (Jay Ellis).

In the clip, she is seen enjoying single life with her best friend Molly (Yvonne Orji), Tiffany (Amanda Seales), and Kelli (Natasha Rothwell). However, she may GO BACK TO her fling with Daniel (Y’lan Noel), who also makes an appearance in the promo.

Official synopsis: Modern-day black women might be described as strong and confident; in other words, just the opposite of Issa and

and Molly. As the best friends deal with their own real-life flaws, their insecurities come to the fore as together they cope with an endless series of uncomfortable everyday experiences. Created by co-star Issa Rae and writer/comic Larry Wilmore (The Daily Show With Jon Stewart), the comedy series looks at the friendship of two black women in a unique, authentic way. It features the music of both indie and established artists of color, and touches on a variety of social and racial issues that relate to the contemporary black experience.

Network: HBO

Release date: August 12, 2018

SUPERFLY 

Superfly puts a modern-day spin on the 1972 blaxploitation classic, starring Trevor Jackson as the antihero.

Set in Atlanta, the movie is filled with fancy cars, hip-hop, and strip clubs. The Sony and Silver Pictures’ reboot debuted on June the 13tg earning an estimated $1.2 million.

Official synopsis: Cocaine kingpin Youngblood Priest realizes that it’s time to get out of the game after surviving a violent attack from a crazed rival. Hoping for one last score, Priest and his partner travel to Mexico to arrange a deal.

The career criminal now finds himself trying to outmaneuver the cartel, two corrupt police officers and all the double-crossers that threaten his path to freedom.

Release date: June 13

 

LUKE CAGE (SEASON 2)

Cheo Hodari Coker’s adaption of Marvel’s Luke Cage has been a fan favorite since the streaming series first premiered in 2016.

The superhero series features an all-star Melanin cast of actors, including Mike Colter, Simone Missick, Alfre Woodard, Mustafa Shakir, Gabrielle Dennis, and Rosario Dawson.

Official synopsis: After clearing his name, Luke Cage (played by actor Mike Colter) has become a celebrity on the streets of Harlem, with a reputation as bulletproof as his skin.

But being so visible has only increased his need to protect the community and find the limits of who he can and can’t save. With the rise of a formidable new foe, Luke is

limits of who he can and can’t save. With the rise of a formidable new foe, Luke is forced to confront the fine line that separates a hero from a villain.

Network: Netflix

Premiere date: June 22

 

Love Is

 

Love Is_ is a new romantic series that gives us the ‘90s nostalgia.

The show is based on the real-life romance of award-winning producer Mara Brock Akil—the mastermind behind GirlfriendsThe Game, and Being Mary Jane— and her husband Salim Akil. Set in 1990s L.A., actors Michele Weaver and William Catlett play Mara and Salim when they first started dating back in 1997.

Official synopsis: Michele Weaver and Will Catlett star in OWN’s new romantic drama Love Is___, from award-winning producers Mara Brock Akil (GirlfriendsBeing Mary JaneThe Game) and Salim Akil (Black Lightning).

Set in 1990s Los Angeles against the backdrop of Black Hollywood, Love Is___follows Nuri (Michele Weaver) and Yasir (Will Catlett), a couple from seemingly opposite worlds, as they chase their dreams and learn to follow their hearts.

Told from the perspective of the couple’s present-day selves, the romantic drama also revisits the social issues and vibrant black culture of that time reflecting on how it all aligned to shape the couple they have become nearly 20 years later—a power couple navigating a complex set of social codes while also balancing successful careers and a beautiful family. Drawing inspiration from creators Mara Brock Akil and

Salim Akil’s own relationship journey, the series explores the highs, the lows, and the magic of falling (and staying) in love.

Network: OWN

Premiere date: June 19

 

SORRY TO BOTHER YOU

Sorry To Bother You is an Afro-futuristiccomedy that pushes an anti-capitalist message.

Official synopsisSorry To Bother You is an alternate present-day version of Oakland. Telemarketer Cassius Green (Lakeith Stanfield) discovers a magical key to professional success, propelling him into a macabre universe.

The ensemble cast consists of Lakeith Stanfield, Tessa Thompson, Armie Hammer, Terry Crews, Steven Yeun, Omari Hardwick, Jermaine Fowler, and Danny Glover.

The film is written and directed by Boots Riley and produced by Nina Yang Bongiovi, Forest Whitaker, Charles D. King and George Rush with distribution by Annapurna Pictures.

 

Release date: July 6

BLACKKKLANSMAN

Extraordinary filmmakers Spike Lee and Jordan Peele teamed up to produce one of the most highly anticipated movies of the summer, BlacKkKlansman.

Official synopsis: From visionary filmmaker Spike Lee comes the incredible true story of an American hero.

It’s the early 1970s, and Ron Stallworth (John David Washington) is the first African-American detective to serve in the Colorado Springs Police Department. Determined to make a name for himself, Stallworth bravely sets out on a dangerous mission: infiltrate and expose the Ku Klux Klan.

The young detective soon recruits a more seasoned colleague, Flip Zimmerman (Adam Driver), into the undercover investigation of a lifetime.

Together, they team up to take down the extremist hate group as the organization aims to sanitize its violent rhetoric to appeal to the mainstream. Produced by the team behind the Academy-Award® winning film Get Out.

Release date: August 10,2018

 

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Melanin Excellence from Politics to Disney – our 2019 so far

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We are in the home stretch of 2019 and 2020 is fast approaching! What a year it has been! Black Excellence is truly on the rise! Personally, I have never been this proud to see our culture represented in such a positive light. – Tiesha

In the Political News – The United States has a black woman on the ballot for President of the United States!

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Kamala Harris

Kamala Harris, United States Senator from California, is really making her mark in the presidential race. She is the first black woman that has run of the office for president in over 9 years. The US has had 11 black women to run for President of the United States over the years. 

Her campaign slogan “For the People” is not just a slogan but a true testament for the changes she has initiated in her political career. From introducing tax cuts to the middle class, proposals of tuition-free higher education, protecting the rights of refugees and immigrants, and so much more. Her work showcases her commitment to the advancement of the United States. These are perfect qualities of a President!

But Kamala Harris is not the only Black presidential candidate. Wayne Messam, a Florida Mayor, is also in the running for the election. His parents came to Florida from Jamaica with only a 5th-grade education to build a better life. The work ethics that were instilled in their son drove him and his wife Angela in building several highly profitable minority construction businesses.

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Wayne Messam

In the career of Wayne Messam, he has been an advocate of higher wages, job security for US workers, leading the cause of protection of immigrants to come to the US for a better life, and many other contributions to the country. His campaign slogan “For America” shows that he has what it takes to bring wealth and prosperity to the US.

In Entertainment News – Disney has not one but two new remakes that have featured lead black cast members. This is a major accomplishment and advancement for Disney. The last black lead role in Disney pictures was The Princess and The Frog released in 2009.

Afbeeldingsresultaat voor Halle Bailey the new Ariel
Halle Bailey the new Ariel

The Little Mermaid Reboot featuring Halle Bailey as Ariel is a beautiful addition to the Disney family. Halle Bailey is a part of the R&B Group Chloe x Halle who rose to fame after their rendition of Beyoncé’ Pretty Hurts. This led to the group to be an opening act for Beyoncé’ Formation World Tour in 2016.

Halle being the starting role unfortunately suffered major backlash from critics.  Hashtags #NotMyAriel were trending on Twitter causing an uproar of negativity to the star due to the changing of the skin color by Disney from fair to a melanin complexion.

Even through the criticism, an outpouring of support on social media came forth for Halle. Fellow celebrities Willow Smith, Mariah Carey, Donald Glover, Jordan Sparks, and many others came to showcase support for her as well for the upcoming remake of the Disney film.

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Donald Glover as Simba in the Lion King live-action movie

The Lion King remake has a host of black excellence in the cast. Donald Glover as Simba, Beyoncé as Nala, Chance the Rapper as Bush Baby, Chiwetel Ejiofor as Scar, Keegan-Michael Key as Kamari, Eric Andre’ as Azizi, John Kani as Rafiki, Florence Kasumba as Kamari, Phil Lamar and J. Lee offering voice supporting roles, and legendary artists Alfre Woodard as Sabri and James Earl Jones as Mufasa.

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Beyonce as Nala in the Lion King live-action movie

The Lion King remake has made over 540 million dollars to date. It was reported by Forbes magazine to be the top-grossing live-action remake! Hats off to the cast!

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The movie “Little” features youngest executive producer 14-year-old Marsai Martin from the ABC hit show Black-ish.

Afbeeldingsresultaat voor Marsai Martin youngest producer ever
Marsai Martin – Youngest producer ever

This was a great breakthrough for the youth in film. Working alongside Regina Hall, Preston L. Holmes, and Josh Martin who also executive produced this film, offered support and guidance as she embarked on this journey. This movie opened more doors of opportunities for Marsai to produce a film adaptation of B.B. Alston’s debut novel Amari and the Night Brothers and another film Step Monster with future release dates coming soon.

In Beauty News -The US has three major Black pageant winners!

Afbeeldingsresultaat voor Miss USA 2019 Chelsie Kryst
Miss USA 2019 Chelsie Kryst

Miss USA 2019 Chelsie Kryst from North Carolina, Miss America 2019 Nia Franklin from New York, and Miss Teen USA 2019 Kaleigh Garris from Connecticut.

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Miss Teen USA 2019 Kaleigh Garris

This is a record-breaking history-making victory to have such representation at one time in this space. For years black beauty has been commercialized and society unaccepted.

Afbeeldingsresultaat voor Nia Franklin
Nia Franklin – Miss America 2019

As a black woman being born and raised in Mississippi, I have seen firsthand many accounts of racial injustice and heard countless stories from my elders. To see Black people, rise above the pressures of opposition and move into their appointed victory in black excellence inspires me to do the same.

I truly believe that James Brown says it best “Say it Loud! I’m Black and I’m Proud!”

Blogger: Tiesha (Latiesha Olive) is a beauty blogger with her own blog beautifulnaturalcurls.com. You can also follow her on Youtube- ‘Beautiful Natural Curls’ and Instagram @Bnaturalcurls. Tiesha is our USA correspondent for your Melanin Wonder News!

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[Dutch] – De KROON – Behind the scenes

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Waarom moet de hele wereld weten van jullie filmpje?

Voor zwarte mensen is het erg leerzaam en bemoedigend om deze film te zien, omdat zij vervreemd zijn geraakt van hun roots door kolonialisme en door deze film te zien ervaar je de rijke geschiedenis die het afro haar kent en voel je je niet vervreemd van je natuurlijke haar. Daarnaast is de film voor de hele wereld interessant, omdat het een ode is aan de zwarte vrouw. De schepper van de mensheid. Een vrouw die door de geschiedenis heen hoogte punten, maar sinds het westers kolonialisme tot nu toe uit de westerse geschiedenis boeken wordt gelaten omdat ze een gevaar zou zijn voor de westerse samenleving. Wij willen die liefde voor haar en voor deze rijke (haar)geschiedenis delen met de wereld.

Hoe lang duurde het om dit te creeeren?

De film kent geen starttijd, omdat er veel voorkennis is opgedaan die bewust in de film geïmplementeerd is, maar sinds de racistische uitspraken die zijn gedaan bij het programma Bubbels&Gloss op 6 mei 2018 zijn we het concept van de film gaan uitwerken. Het is een organisch proces geweest, waarbij we niet verbonden waren aan harde deadline, omdat we dit als een belangrijk project zagen dat we wilde maken op onze eigen voorwaarden. 

Behind the scenes – short movie de KROON

Wat moet men vinden, doen of denken nadat zij het filmpje hebben gezien.

De onvoorwaardelijke kracht, liefde en geluk voelen die zwarte mensen uit hun haar en elkaar halen. Geconfronteerd raken door de hoeveelheid representatie van zwarte mensen en tegelijkertijd geïntrigeerd zijn om meer over deze wereld werkelijkheid te komen. 

Voor wie is dit filmpje voornamelijk?

Dit filmpje is voornamelijk gericht op de Afro-Nederlander, omdat we hen willen bemoedigen meer van hun natuurlijke haar te houden en die met trots te dragen, maar ook meer kennis op te doen over de rijke geschiedenis van de zwarte mens. 

Komt er een deel 2? 

Er staat geen deel 2 op de planning, maar haar is een onlosmakelijk deel van onze (culturele)identiteit waardoor dit zeker terug zal komen in de toekomstige films die we maken. Vooralsnog zijn we filmstudenten aan de HKU in Utrecht, maar hebben we beiden een eigen YouTube kanaal: ROBIN RAMOS en KYMANI CEDER.

Zie hoofdartikel en video [klik hier]

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De KROON

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On the sixth of May, 2019 something horrifying happened. The Dutch lifestyle and fashion TV show allowed one of the cast members to make racist comments about Afro and kinky curly hair.

This exploded in a negative in all the news platforms and many if not all black and brown men and women were grossly offended. Robin Ramos (20) and Kymani Ceder (19) wrote a poem as a response. They used the poem as a positive representation by, from and for the Afro-Dutch community. The goal is to use the movie “The Crown” (De kroon) created by Robin and Kymani to create awareness and free the Black community from the chains of stereotyping of Afro hair.

Footage from the short film – de KROON

Robin and Kymani chose to form the video as a school assignment with a theme family.

Robin Ramos

Kymani Ceder

Using ‘Black hairstyles’ as a point gave them the inspiration to show different historical and tribal connotations involving Afro hair. In many cultures, it is still a way to be in contact with the ancestors. Besides braiding, is doing hair an activity done throughout time and has it has been a signature activity in black families.

The short film portrays a paradox time-machine with precolonial impressions. It takes you on a journey back to the age of where the traditional braids were used to connect the past with the present.

The movie is a re-enactment of history acted out by present-day Dutch Africans. How do Dutch Africans experience their African identity after the physical alienation that has taken place after slavery? How do they feel about their hair now? How do we feel during and after watching the short film?

Around 80 people were involved by the making of the short film: De Kroon. Some well-known artists and actors from the Dutch entertainment such as Sylvana Simons, Veronica van Hoogdalem, Digitzz, Clarice Gargard and Guillermo Babel.

Sylvana Simons & Robin Ramos

“De Kroon” is a poetic storyline about the relationship Afro Dutch citizens have with their natural hair and hairstyles. The Natural Hair movement is becoming more and more visible in the world. And we are loving it.

For all readers from the Netherlands: Want to read more about the backstory and behind the scenes, straight from the creator/inspirator of this video? click here

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