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BLFF Announces ‘Don’t Let Go’ as Opening Night Film (VIDEO)

The Bronzelens Film Festival (BLFF) is celebrating its 10th year anniversary August 21-25 and recently announced that David Oyelowo‘s Don’t Let Go will be the festival’s opening night film.

It features Oyelowo as detective Jack Radcliff who gets a shocking phone call from his recently-murdered niece Ashley (played by Storm Reid). Working together across time, they race to solve her murder before it can happen.

Don’t Let Go also stars Brian Tyree HenryMykelti WilliamsonShinelle AzorohByron MannApril Grace and Alfred Molina. It is written and directed by Jacob Estes.

The film will screen on Wednesday, August 21 at the iconic Landmark Midtown Cinema beginning at 6:30 p.m. with a dazzling Bronze Carpet and the screening at 8:00 p.m.

Check out my UPFRONT coverage below from the recent BLFF Media Mixer where this and other exciting news was announced:

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New Poster for ‘Don’t Let Go’ featuring David Oyelowo

Check out the new double exposure poster for Don’t Let Go featuring David Oyelowo and A Wrinkle in Time star Storm Reid.  

As previously reported, Oyelowo plays detective Jack Radcliff who gets a shocking phone call from his recently-murdered niece Ashley (Reid). Working together across time, they race to solve her murder before it can happen.

Don’t Let Go also stars Brian Tyree HenryMykelti WilliamsonShinelle AzorohByron MannApril Grace and Alfred Molina.

It is written and directed by Jacob Estes.

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Watch Trailer for Ava DuVernay’s ‘August 28: Day in The Life of a People’ (VIDEO)

Posted by | Ray Cornelius

If you watched the season finale of Queen Sugar Wednesday night you may have noticed that star studded trailer for Ava DuVernay‘s August 28: A Day in the Life of a People. The short film will debut on Tuesday, August 28 at 7 p.m. EST.

According to the press release, August 28 is a 22-minute scripted film that was written, produced and directed by DuVernay, and traverses a century of black progress, protest, passion and perseverance of African-American people. The project gives historical perspective within the creative framework of one date that has had a profound effect on America including: the passing of The Slavery Abolition Act on August 28, 1833, the lynching of Emmett Till on August 28, 1956, the first radio airplay from Motown Records on August 28, 1961 with The Marvelettes “Please Mr Postman,” Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I Have A Dream” speech during the massive March on Washington on August 28, 1965, Hurricane Katrina making its tragic landfall on August 28, 2005 and then-Senator Barack Obama’s acceptance of the Democratic nomination for the presidency on August 28, 2008.

August 28 features an all-star cast including Lupita Nyong’o, Angela Bassett, Don Cheadle, Regina King, David Oyelowo, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, André Holland, Michael Ealy and Glynn Turman.

The film was lensed by cinematographer Malik Sayeed and edited by Oscar nominee Spencer Averick. Ten-time Grammy nominee Meshell Ndegeocello composed the score. Paul Garnes produced, with co-producers Tilane Jones and Tammy Garnes.

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RC attends ATL Screening of ‘Queen of Katwe’ [PHOTOS]

Posted by | Ray Cornelius 

I had the pleasure of attending a private screening this week of the new Disney film “Queen of Katwe.” The movie is based on the inspirational true story of Phiona Mutesi, a young girl who rises from the slums of Uganda to become a world chess champion.

katwe-photoIt features Madina Nalwanga as Mutesi along with Oscar winning-actress Lupita Nyong’o as her mother Harriett Mutesi and David Oyelowo as her coach and mentor Robert Katende. 

“Queen of Katwe” is definitely a film all parents should take their entire family to see. It’s funny, motivational and entertaining all at the same time. While it is being promoted as a children’s film, I wouldn’t recommend taking little ones under 8 years of age due to its length of time (it’s about 2 hours). In addition, all three of the above mentioned actors do an outstanding job retelling this amazing story of courage, resilience, love and faith. “Queen” opens in limited theaters on September 23 and nationwide on September 30.

Check out photos below of a few Atlanta notables who came out to support the screening including Willie Moore Jr. (The Willie Moore Jr. Show) who served as the inspirational host for the evening; Angel Mccoughtry (Atlanta Dream and two-time U.S. Olympic Gold Medalist); Jack Daniels (#BlackLove TV Host), Marshawn Daniels (The Apprentice); Dr. Alduan Tartt (Celebrity Psychologist); Alisha Thomas Morgan (Former GA Lawmaker);  ASH (Recording Artist); Kathleen Bertrand (BronzeLens Film Festival);  Porsha Ferguson (The Haves and the Have Nots) and more.

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Maynard H. Jackson III and his wife

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Ice Cream Conversation’s Xaviera Bryant and her daughter

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Alisha Thomas Morgan and her daughter

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Chasing Destiny’s ASH

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Jack and Marshawn Daniels

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Willie Moore Jr. and his family

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Kathleen Bertrand 

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Members of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. 

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Angel Mccoughtry and her wife

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Dr. Tartt and his daughter

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Porsha Ferguson

Photo Credits: RayCornelius.com and TheDisneyBlog.com

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Oprah Winfrey & Ava DuVernay host ‘Queen Sugar’ Screening [PHOTOS]

Posted by | Ray Cornelius 

Dynamic duo Oprah Winfrey and Ava DuVernay recently hosted an exclusive screening of their new OWN series “Queen Sugar” at the Warner Bros. Studio Lot’s Steven J. Ross Theater. The drama will debut as a two-night event on Tuesday, September 6 (commercial free) and Wednesday, September 7 at 10 p.m. ET/PT on OWN. “Queen Sugar” chronicles the lives and loves of three estranged siblings and will air regularly on Wednesday nights at 10 p.m. ET/PT for the remainder of its 13-episode first season.

OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network Celebrates "Queen Sugar" PremiereIn attendance at the premiere were Oprah Winfrey (Executive Producer) and Ava DuVernay (Executive Producer/Creator) along with cast members Rutina Wesley (“Nova Bordelon”), Dawn-Lyen Gardner (“Charley Bordelon West”), Kofi Siriboe (“Ralph Angel Bordelon”), Omar J. Dorsey (“Hollywood Desonier”), Dondré T. Whitfield (“Remy Newell”), Nicholas L. Ashe (“Micah West”), Tina Lifford (“Violet Bordelon”), Timon Kyle Durrett (“Davis West”), Greg Vaughan (“Calvin”), Ethan Hutchison (“Blue”), Marycarmen Lopez (“Reyna Velez”), Bianca Lawson (“Darla”), Estrella Nouri (“Melina Gold”), Glynn Turman (“Ernest Bordelon”), Henry G. Sanders (“Prosper Denton”), KJ Smith (“Lena”), Ninja Devoe (“Roberta”), Tony Winters (“Clive”), True O’Brien(“Stella”), plus Kevin Tsujihara (Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Warner Bros.), Peter Roth (President and Chief Content Officer, Warner Bros. Television Group), Brett Paul (Co-President, Warner Horizon Scripted Television) and Susan Rovner (Co-President, Warner Horizon Scripted Television).

OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network Celebrates "Queen Sugar" PremiereThe “Queen Sugar” all-female directorial team that includes Kat Candler, Neema Barnette, Salli Richardson Whitfield, So Yong Kim, Tanya Hamilton, Tina Mabry and Victoria Mahoney were also in attendance. Additional guests at the premiere were David Oyelowo (Queen of Katwe, Selma), Jimmy Iovine, Keith Stanfield (Snowden), Liberty Ross (Actress), Meagan Good (Code Black), Niecy Nash (Scream Queens), Xosha Roquemore (The Mindy Project) and more.

Following the screening, Oprah, Ava, the cast and guests continued the celebration on the lot’s Brownstone Street and dined on Louisiana cuisine favorites such as beignets, jambalaya, bananas foster and other treats.

See more photos below:

OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network Celebrates "Queen Sugar" Premiere

Oprah Winfrey and Ava DuVernay

OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network Celebrates "Queen Sugar" Premiere

Oprah Winfrey on the red carpet

OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network Celebrates "Queen Sugar" Premiere

Oprah and Ava with the cast on the red carpet

OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network Celebrates "Queen Sugar" Premiere

“Queen Sugar” cast on stage

Photos Credits: Mark Davis/WireImage

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New Poster for Disney’s ‘Queen of Katwe’ (VIDEO)

Posted by | Ray Cornelius 

Check out a new poster for the upcoming Disney film “Queen of Katwe” starring Oscar winning actress Lupita Nyong’o, Golden Globe nominated actor David Oyelowo and newcomer Madina Nalwanga.

As previously reported, “Queen of Katwe” is based on the true story of a young woman from the slums of Uganda who went on to become a World Chess Olympiad. Nalwanga plays the role of the chess winning champion, Phiona Mutesi while Nyong’o plays Phiona’s mother, Harriett Mutesi and Oyelowo plays Phiona’s coach and mentor, Robert Katende.

The film debuts in theaters September 23 and expands to more cities on September 3o. See the new trailer and full poster below:

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Photo Credit: Blackfilm.com

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Oprah Winfrey hosts L.A. Premiere of OWN’s ‘Greenleaf’ [PHOTOS]

Posted by  | Ray Cornelius

The cast of OWN’s highly anticipated new series “Greenleaf” attended a special advanced screening last night at The Lot in West Hollywood.

The family megachurch series, which features Oprah Winfrey’s first recurring scripted television role in two decades, takes viewers into the unscrupulous world of the Greenleaf family and their sprawling Memphis church where scandalous secrets and lies are as numerous as the faithful. After the screening, Oprah gave welcoming remarks and invited guests to join her at the Memphis BBQ reception that followed.

Oprah Winfrey at OWN Los Angeles Premiere of Greenleaf_PhotoCredit_GettyImages_Mark Davis MWD10460_r1Attendees included Winfrey, who stars as Mavis McCready and serves as one of the show’s executive producers, along with “Greenleaf” cast members Merle Dandridge (Grace Greenleaf), Keith David (Bishop James Greenleaf), Lynn Whitfield (Lady Mae Greenleaf), Kim Hawthorne (Kerissa Greenleaf), Lamman Rucker (Jacob Greenleaf), Tye White (Kevin Satterlee), Deborah Joy Winans (Charity Greenleaf-Satterlee), Desiree Ross (Sophia Greenleaf),GregAlan Williams (“Mac McCready”), Benjamin Patterson (“Noah Kendall”), Kristin Erickson (“Alexa”), Anna Diop (“Isabel”), Terri Abney (“Faith Greenleaf”), Zachary S. Williams (“William”), Jason Dirden (“Bassie Skanks”), Deji LaRay (“David Nelson”), plus Craig Wright (Executive Producer/Creator), Clement Virgo (Executive Producer/Director), Erik Logan (President, OWN), Kevin Beggs (Chairman, Lionsgate Television), and Sandra Stern (President, Lionsgate Television Group).  Additional attendees include Niecy Nash (Scream Queens), David Oyelowo (Selma) and more.

“Greenleaf” will launch with a two-night premiere on Tuesday, June 21 at 10 p.m. ET/PT and Wednesday, June 22 at 9 p.m. and 10 p.m. ET/PT on OWN.  The series will regularly air on Wednesdays at 10 p.m. ET/PT for the remainder of its 13-episode first season.

Check out the making of the “Greenleaf” theme below featuring “the first lady of gospel music,” Shirley Caesar:

Photo Credits: Mark Davis/Getty Images and Jason Kempin/Getty Images

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WATCH First Trailer for ‘Queen of Katwe’ + Official Poster (VIDEO)

Posted by | Ray Cornelius 

Disney has released the first teaser trailer and poster for its upcoming family film, “Queen of Katwe,” starring Lupita Nyong’o and David Oyelowo. The film debuts in theaters September 23 and expands to more cities on September 3o.

As previously reported, “Queen of Katwe” is based on the true story of Phiona Mutesi, a young woman from the slums of Uganda who went on to become a World Chess Olympiad. Nyong’o plays Phiona’s mother Harriett Mutesi and Oyelowo plays Robert Katende, Phiona’s coach and mentor. The role of Phiona is played by Madina Nalwanga.

Check out the trailer + the full poster below:

Stay tuned…

QOK

https://vimeo.com/165805500

Photo Credit: ShadowandAct.com

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Disney’s ‘Queen of Katwe’ to debut in U.S. Theaters September 2016

Posted by | Ray Cornelius

Mark your calendars! Disney’s upcoming film, “Queen of Katwe,” will debut in limited U.S. theaters beginning September 23 and then expand to more cities September 3o, according to Shadow and Act.

As previously reported, the film is based on the true story of Phiona Mutesi, a young woman from the slums of Uganda who went on to become a World Chess Olympiad. Oscar winner Lupita Nyong’o plays Phiona’s mother Harriett Mutesi and “Selma” star David Oyelowo plays Robert Katende, Phiona’s coach and mentor. The role of Phiona is played by Madina Nalwanga.

Nyong’o and Oyelowo will also star in the film adaptation of Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s “Americanah.”

Stay tuned…

Photo Credit: Shadow and Act

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‘Golden Globe’ Nominees + Full Award Show Season

Written by | Ray Cornelius 

The 2016 Award Show season is in full bloom beginning with tonight’s telecast of the 73rd Annual Golden Globes Awards at 8 p.m. on NBC.

golden-globes-trophy1A number of RC favorites have been nominated including Will Smith for his riveting performance in “Concussion,” Idris Elba for “Beasts of No Nation” and “Luther,” Queen Latifah for her portrayal of music icon Bessie Smith in HBO’s “Bessie” and David Oyelowo for his role in the critically-acclaimed “Nightingale.” Fans favorities “Empire” and “Orange Is The New Black” are also up for Best Television Series – Drama and Best Television Series – Musical or Comedy.

“Empire” diva Taraji P. Henson will go toe-to-toe with “How To Get Away with Murder” vixen Viola Davis for “Best Performance by an Actress In A Television Series – Drama” and Regina King is up against Uzo Aduba are for Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Series, Limited Series or Motion Picture Made for Television.

Two-time Golden Globe winner and film icon Denzel Washington will be receiving this year’s Cecil B. DeMille Award for his outstanding contributions to the world of entertainment. He is the third African-American male actor to receive this coveted honor with past recipients including Sidney Poitier and Morgan Freeman.

Click HERE to see the full list of nominees and check out the rest of the 2016 Award Shows schedule below:

SAG AWARDS

Saturday, January 30 at 8 p.m. on TNT and TBS

CRITICS CHOICE AWARDS

Sunday, January 17 at 8 p.m. on A&E

NAACP IMAGE AWARDS

Friday, February 5 at 8 p.m. on TV One

GRAMMY AWARDS

Monday, Feb. 15, 2016 at 8 p.m. on CBS

BET HONORS

Tuesday, February 23 at 8 p.m. on BET

iHEART RADIO MUSIC AWARDS

Sunday, April 3, 2016 on TBS and TNT

TONY AWARDS

Sunday, June 12 at 8 p.m. EST on CBS

Photo Credits: AwardsWatch.com

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First Look at Lupita Nyong’o in Disney’s ‘Queen of Katwe’

Posted by | Ray Cornelius 

Check out a first look photo of Oscar winner Lupita Nyong’o in Disney’s adaptation of Tim Crother‘s book “Queen of Katwe.”

0x4The project is based on the true story of Phiona Mutesi, a young woman from the slums of Uganda who went on to become a World Chess Olympiad. Nyong’o plays Phiona’s mother Harriett Mutesi and “Selma” star David Oyelowo plays Robert Katende, Phiona’s coach and mentor.  The role of Phiona is played by Madina Nalwanga.  Also Look for Nyong’o and Oyelowo to star in the film adaptation of Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s “Americanah.”

“The Queen of Katwe” opens in theaters this fall.

Source

Photo Credit: Shadow & Act
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David Oyelowo, Jon Voight & more get real for THR’s Actor Roundtable (VIDEO)

Posted by | Ray Cornelius 

In June, The Hollywood Reporter talked exclusively to six Emmy nominated actresses about their challenges in Hollywood including Empire’s Taraji P. Henson and How To Get Away with Murder star Viola Davis. Now it’s the fellas turn and this time the roundtable discussion features Emmy nominees Bob Odenkirk, Timothy Hutton, Justin Theroux, Jon Voight, Clive Owen and “Nightingale” star David Oyelowo. Check out the hour long video below where each one talks candidly about their television and film projects and the memorable characters they portray.

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Photo Credit: The Hollywood Reporter

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WATCH New ‘CAPTIVE’ Featurette with David Oyelowo & Kate Mara (VIDEO)

Posted by | Ray Cornelius

Paramount Pictures has released a new featurette about the upcoming Atlanta crime drama, Captive, starring David Oyelowo and Kate Mara. The film is based on the book, Unlikely Angel: The Untold Story of the Atlanta Hostage Hero.

Captive tells the real story of Brian Nichols’ escape from the Atlanta courthouse in 2005 which resulted in the murder of four people including Judge Rowland Barnes. Nichols later fled to the Duluth, GA, where he took single mother, Ashley Smith hostage and she read Rick Warren’s Purpose Driven Life to him. Michael K. SmithLeonar Varela, Mimi RogersKevin J. O’Conner, and E. Roger Mitchell also appear in the film.

Captive opens in theaters nationwide Friday, September 18.

Check out the new 4-minute clip and images below:

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Photo Credits: BlackFilm.com

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WATCH the New Trailer for ‘CAPTIVE’ starring David Oyelowo (VIDEO)

Posted by | Ray Cornelius

Earlier this year, we reported that Selma actor David Oyelowo was starring in a new film based on the real-life 2005 crime drama about Brian Nichols. Well, the first trailer has been released and I have it just for you!

Captive tells the story of Nichols’ escape from the Atlanta courthouse jail on March 11, 2005 which resulted in a killing spree.  Four people were murdered that day including Judge Rowland Barnes, Court reporter, Julie Brandau, Sergent Hoyt Teasley and ICE agent David G. Wilhelm.  Nichols later fled to the Duluth, Georgia, where he took single mother, Ashley Smith hostage and she read Rick Warren’s Purpose Driven Life to him.  Nichols eventually surrendered to authorities and was found guilty of 54 counts and is now serving a life sentence.

Captive  also features Kate Mara is Ashley Smith; Michael K. Smith as Detective John Chestnut; Leonar Varela as Detective Sanchez; Mimi Rogers as Kim Rogers; Kevin J. O’Conner as FBI agent and E. Roger Mitchell as Sergent Teasley.

Take a look below:

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“Captive” will be released on September 18, 2015.

Photo Credit: IndieWire.com