Posted by | Ray Cornelius 

Real life besties—Daveed Diggs and Rafael Casal—are confronting gentrification, racism, police brutality and classism in the new film Blindspotting. It opens in theaters nationwide this summer on July 27.

Blindspotting follows Collin (Diggs), who must make it through his final three days of probation for a chance at a new beginning.  He and his troublemaking childhood best friend, Miles (Casal), work as movers, and when Collin witnesses a police shooting, the two men’s friendship is tested as they grapple with identity and their changed realities in the rapidly gentrifying neighborhood they grew up in.

I got a chance to preview the film recently during the Atlanta Film Festival (AFF) where Diggs revealed that it took them nearly 10 years to complete the project. He also discussed how much of the “isms” presented in the storyline are issues we’re still dealing with today.

“I think it’s even more relevant now but the sad thing about it is that it was relevant then. That’s the greatest tragedy of the tragedies in this film. We say all the time, ‘we wish this film was nostalgic’ and ‘we wish this felt like a period piece from 10 years ago’ but it’s not,” said Diggs during my red carpet interview for my radio show, UPFRONT.

Blindspotting also features Jasmine Cephas JonesTisha Campbell-MartinEthan EmbryKevin CarrollNyambi NyambiWayne KnightJohn ChaffinUtkarsh Ambudkar and Janina Gavankar.

In addition to the special advanced screening, Diggs was also the recipient of the AFF’s inaugural ATLFF Innovator Award, a newly created award to recognize visionaries and those forging their own path within the film industry.

Check out photos from the red carpet premiere and watch the film’s trailer below:

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