All Articles Tagged "gina prince bythewood"
Get excited ladies and gentlemen. It’s no secret that there is a constant struggle to get quality films starring black actors to the big screen. But there’s good news. Writer and director Gina Prince-Bythewood, known for Love and Basketball, Disappearing Acts and Secret Life of Bees, is bringing you a new project called Beyond the Lights.
The film, originally titled Blackbird, will star a few of our favorites including Nate Parker and the rising star Gugu Mbatha-Raw.
Here’s the synopsis:
[Beyond the Lights] is the story of Noni Jean, a hot new artist who has just won a Grammy and is primed for stardom. But the pressures of success compel her to nearly end her life until she is saved by a young police officer. They fall hard for each other, despite the protests of their parents who want each to focus on their own career ambitions. But he might be the missing piece to unlock her artistic potential.
The film also stars Danny Glover and Minnie Driver as Gugu’s mother.
The film backed by Relativity Media and BET is scheduled to be released November 14, 2014. Afterward, it’ll have an exclusive television premiere in the U.S. and South Africa on BET.
According to an interview with Entertainment Weekly, the inspiration for the film came when Prince-Bythewood was listening to Alicia Keys perform “Diary” in 2007. She spent years developing the film, fighting with the studio to cast the right leading actress.
She told EW, “The studios wanted a big star, and I wanted the right person for the role.”
Prince-Bythewood ended up hiring her own casting agent to do the job properly.
“There is an innate vulnerability in Gugu. And you can sense her star power. That’s what we needed to believe–that she could be Rihanna or Beyoncé.”
Still Sony wasn’t convinced and Prince-Bythewood took matters into her own hands once again. She produced an eight minute sneak peek of the film with Mbatha-Raw in the role and found financiers at BET and Relativity Media.
“It was so nice to sit in a room and not hear that the lead is a black woman and she’s not going to sell.’ Rather they said, ‘We think she’s a star, who do you want for your male lead?’” Prince-Bythewood said.
Yes! I don’t know about you all but I’m ready for this one. I had the privilege of seeing a screening of Belle, starring Mbatha-Raw, and it was amazing as was she in the role. Plus it’s always nice to see black folk teaming up and using their forces for good. #Ready.
Take a look at the trailer below and some pictures from the upcoming film on the next page.
Riding on the success of a New York Times best-selling novel, it wasn’t a stretch to see that The Secret Life of Bees would be made into a feature film. Six years after the book was published, it hit the big screen with an all-star cast. The movie, which was highly anticipated was number 3 in the box office, raking in over $10 million during its first weekend and then over $47 million by the time it finished its run. The movie eventually received mixed reviews, with some calling it too syrupy sweet while others thought it was delightfully moving. Whether you loved it or just thought it was “aight,” check out these behind the scenes secrets.
Love and Basketball was the bridging of two seemingly unrelated worlds, athletics and love. But the story came together seamlessly, with the help of the talented Sanaa Lathan and Omar Epps. The film, the first for director Gina Prince-Bythewood, would go on to become the highest grossing film produced by a black woman at that time, (2001). Let’s dive in and see how this movie was made, and the secrets behind this romantic classic.
She is the sista that makes you laugh, sob and shout at your TV screen. She’s not your favorite actress, but she definitely plays a leading role. You may not know her name and you may never see her face. She works behind the scenes as the writer, director, and producer of some of our favorite shows, music videos, and films. Here are a five sistas the create the moments we love behind the scenes: