Kiara Jones is the FIRST-EVER US finalist among the four winners for The Bombay Sapphire Imagination Series: Film Competition (BSIS). Kiara Jones from Jacksonville, Florida was announced last month as one of the four global winners for her film, The Other Side of The Game.
The BSIS competition offers budding filmmakers the chance to realize their own short film, using their imagination to interpret a short film script created by Academy Award winner Geoffrey Fletcher. Now in its second year, Bombay Sapphire and Geoffrey Fletcher assembled a cross section of imaginative heavy weights from the world of film to judge the entries, which featured Academy Award winning actor,Adrien Brody; screenwriter and film director, Lucy Mulloy; screenwriter, Naomi Foner; actor, Peter Facinelli; and senior curator at Vimeo, Sam Morrill, who between them selected nine films for their originality and imagination.
Kiara said, “I grew up in Jacksonville, Florida and began my professional career in US Air Force. I traveled the world as a Broadcaster for both radio and television. Then I left the service and produced live shows and events in Las Vegas. Though I loved my work, I hated Las Vegas and wanted to move to New York, so I applied to Film School. I was accepted and began writing, directing and producing short films. The photo left is from the Urbanworld Film Festival, where a short I wrote entitled “Barbasol” won the Audience award for Best Short. I’m currently in pre-production for my first feature film entitled, “Christmas Wedding Baby,” which I plan to shoot in January. Tremendously exciting times and I’m thrilled to be sharing them with you.”
See the Other Side of the Game here
UPDATE: Richardson-Whitfield’s Kickstarter campaign to fund the workshop for A Lady Must Live has gone live. To donate, find the campaign page HERE (or on page 2, after the interview that follows).
[Rikki Beadle Blair is the bisexual Black Playwright who wrote the play for her]
S&A’s interview with Richardson-Whitfield follows below.
In the upcoming bioplay A Lady Must Live, Salli Richardson-Whitfield is set to play legendary singer and actressLena Horne. The show will explore a major span of Horne’s life, taking place "backstage after the first preview of ‘A Lady and Her Music,’ as Horne wrestles - emotionally and physically - with her ghosts, struggling to rework her show to recount her life story with more candor and complexity."
The project has been in the works for years, and Richardson-Whitfield and her team will soon launch a fundraising campaign to workshop the play. Recently the actress made time to talk with Shadow And Act about the process of transforming into Lena Horne, as well as her other upcoming projects.
JAI TIGGETT: Back in 2011 we saw your performance as Lena Horne for the Jenesse Silver Rose Gala. Is that where this project started?
SALLI RICHARDSON-WHITFIELD: That just really sparked something. After that event, so many people came up to me, some of which she knew Lena and said, "Oh my God, you were Lena." I’ve always had a love For Lena Horne and I’d really love to do it as a movie, but she loved singing and being on Broadway in New York. She actually left Hollywood to go back to performing on stage. So I thought that it should be a Broadway show, because that really was true to her heart.
So then you have to find the right playwright. I got very lucky that I had to go to London for a convention. My manager knew this playwright [Rikki Beadle Blair], and I went to see his play and it blew me off my feet. I had breakfast with him and talked about it, and he wasn’t quite sure. But then we found a way to get into the story and get it written. And now we need the money to do the workshop. The workshop is the first step of a production, and then you present that for the really big investors to take it to Broadway or start in LA at one of the bigger theaters.MORE
Come on ya’ll, help her out! kickstarter here
Edwidge Danticat, Breath, Eyes, Memory (via welcometofigtown)
There is always a place where women live near trees that, blowing in the wind, sound like music. These women tell stories to their children both to frighten and delight them. These women, they are fluttering lanterns on the hills, the fireflies in the night, the faces that loom over you and recreate the same unspeakable acts that they themselves lived through. There is always a place where nightmares are passed on through generations like heirlooms. Where women like cardinal birds return to look at their own faces in stagnant bodies of water.
I come from a place where breath, eyes and memory are one, a place from which you carry your past like the hair on your head. Where women return to their children as butterflies, or as tears in the eyes of the statues that their daughters pray to. My mother was as brave as stars at dawn. She too was from this place. My mother was like that woman who could never bleed and then could never stop bleeding, the one who gave in to her pain, to live as a butterfly. Yes, my mother was like me.
From the thick of the cane fields, I tried my best to tell her, but the words would not roll off my tongue. My grandmother walked over and put her hand on my shoulder.
'Listen. Listen before it passes. Paròl gin pié zèl. The words can give wings to your feet. There is a place where women are buried in clothes the color of flames, where we drop coffee on the ground for those who went ahead, where the daughter is never fully a woman until her mother has passed on before her. There is always a place where, if you listen closely in the night, you will hear your mother telling a story and at the end of the tale, she will ask you this question: “Ou libéré?” Are you free, my daughter?'
My grandmother quickly pressed her fingers over my lips.
'Now,' she said, 'you will know how to answer.'
Lost Wax Playing Cards
By Olutade Abidoye
Each set of Lost Wax Playing Cards contains 54 playing cards featuring illustrations of royal figures from the 15th – 19th century Benin Empire. The Benin Empire thrived in what is now southern Nigeria and left an impressive record of their civilization in the form of bronze plaques commissioned by the King (Oba) to adorn the courtyards of his palace. The playing cards pay homage to this prosperous period in Nigerian history and, in effect, bring this bygone era from the archives into modernity in a colorful and playful way.
"I expect Lost Wax Playing Cards to bring a new dynamism to Nigerian popular culture and consciousness. My aim is to rekindle this colorful, yet elusive history into Nigerian popular culture through these playing cards. Nigerians are influenced by their indigenous traditions but more increasingly by popular culture. Symbols of tradition—such as those that inspire these cards—are easily overshadowed by meanings, images and activities drawn from popular culture. Since popular culture is grounded in the mundane and the persistent routines of everyday life, then this history too becomes implicit and fixed. The old Africa that inspired these artifacts has now lost much of its luster. If Nigeria’s prosperous past becomes common sense through these cards, then perhaps the notion of a brighter future won’t be so far-fetched." - Olutade
The amount of foreigners working in 3-D jobs (dirty, dangerous and demeaning) experience a myriad of racial and economic prejudice, that is largely overlooked as it isn’t documented in the blogosphere.
This is why movies like Bandhobi excel where the internet fails us. A 2009 indie flick about a frustrated and rebellious high school student who ends up becoming a friend of a migrant from Bangladesh who is desperate to receive his unpaid back wages. Literally translated as a “female friend” — the story follows the ups and downs of their friendship as two lonely souls, placed in a society that they feel disenfranchised with.