By Bill Vaughan
In an effort to promote diversity in all facets of entertainment, the Micheaux Film Festival has teamed up with the Oprah Winfrey Network, Sony Entertainment and Panavision to host its third annual edition.
Taking place April 26 through May 2, the event has successfully garnered interest and submissions from notable filmmakers and their star-studded movies.
Among this year’s offerings are Khadifa Wong’s “Uprooted: The Journey of Jazz Dance” (Debbie Allen, Mandy Moore), Preston A. Whitmore II’s “Dutch” (Lance Gross, Kyle Massey, Tyrin Turner), “Maternally Yours” (Lil Rel Howery) “Dead Talks” (Denzel Whitaker) and “The Bay” (Karrueche Tran, Vivica A. Fox).
Also screening are “Red Pill,” Tonya Pinkins’ directorial debut starring Kathryn Erbe and Ruben Blades; “Content is King” with Taryn Manning, Vanessa Rubio and Austin Pendleton; and the dramatic adaptation of “All Boys Aren’t Blue” by author George M. Johnson starring “black-ish” actress Jenifer Lewis.
Aptly named after Oscar Micheaux, an African-American pioneer in the filmmaking industry, who aimed to bridge different walks of life through his art, the multicultural festival will kick off a week-long celebration with a series of activations, digital panels, master classes, workshops and more.
Last year’s event featured an over-flow of attendees at the Regal Cinemas at L.A Live. Jam-packed with Hollywood’s most elite producers, directors, writers, actors, and entertainers. Hidden Empire Film Group CEO’s Deon and Roxanne Taylor (“Fatale,” “Black & Blue”) were honored.
For more info, updates, or to register, visit: micheauxfilmfest.com.
COMEDY TONIGHT: Kevin Hart’s Laugh Out Loud Network has struck a deal to bring more than 200 episodes from their library to Tubi, Fox Entertainment’s free streaming service. Consumers can watch the content including comedy specials with D.L. Hughley and Cedric The Entertainer, and seasons 1-3 of Eddie Murphy’s “The PJs” via their content providers or online at tubi.tv/.
CLIPPETTES: “Bridgerton” heartthrob Regé-Jean Page is bolting the second season of Netflix’s Shonda Rhimes hit to concentrate on feature films. The Brit is currently filming “The Grey Man” with Ryan Gosling, Chris Evans and Alfre Woodard; before moving on to “Dungeons and Dragons” with Michelle Rodriguez, Chris Pine, Justice Smith and Hugh Grant …
On the brink of releasing his highly anticipated album, “Live N Livin,” Grammy-winning dancehall and reggae hitmaker Sean Paul will perform his first show of the year from the sandy beaches of Jamaica on April 10. Get your virtual ticket at Dreamstage.live …
Also on that date, Wyclef Jean & Jerry Wonda, Leon Bridges, Black Pumas, Los Lobos, Michael Franti, Yola and more are booked for Set Break, an event to support mental health in the music industry. Twitch.tv/therelixchannel is streaming the free show …
O’Shea Jackson Jr. (“Straight Outta Compton”) is joining the Star Wars universe with his casting as a key character in Disney+’s upcoming Obi-Wan Kenobi limited series with Ewan MacGregor returning in the lead role …
Meshell Ndegeocello is guest curator and headliner of BRIC Jazzfest 2021 April 9-11 with sets by Roy Ayers, Robert Glasper, Keyon Harrold, Nate Smith x Van Hunt and others. For more info and the full artist lineup, visit BRICartsmedia.org …
Grammy Award-winning rapper Lupe Fiasco celebrates 15 years of his classic album “Food & Liquor” with a concert April 15. Watch it all at futurestream.tv/lupefiasco …
Jazz at Lincoln Center’s Innovation + Soul, hosted by Dee Dee Bridgewater and honoring Jon Batiste and Charles Philips, will be available to view April 15-25. President Bill Clinton, dancer Lil Buck, conguero/vocalist Pedrito Martinez, actress Anna Deavere Smith and the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis are participants. For tickets, visit jazz.org/gala2021.
TASTY QUIP: “The minute Iyanla [Vanzant] stepped onto the stage of ‘The Oprah Show,’ I knew she had a talent that was meant to be shared and I am glad that she created the perfect vehicle to provide OWN viewers with her healing magic. Sunsetting the series is bittersweet. I’m very thankful for her and the work she does and look forward to what unfolds next from her gift of teaching people to be better versions of themselves.” – OPRAH WINFREY on the final season of “Iyanla: Fix My Life” premiering April 10 with “LisaRaye McCoy: Queen of De-Nial”
TC ON TV: April 9 – “Them” (Amazon): A new terror anthology series from breakout creator Little Marvin and executive producer Lena Waithe. The 1950s set first season centers on a Black family who moves from North Carolina to a then all-white Compton during the period known as The Great Migration. The family’s idyllic home becomes ground zero where malevolent forces, next-door and otherworldly, threaten to taunt, ravage, and destroy them. “Thunder Force” (Netflix): Melissa McCarthy and Octavia Spencer portray two childhood best friends who become an unlikely crime-fighting superhero duo in this action-comedy. “Behind Every Man” (OWN): Myra Anderson “Doing The Most with Phoebe Robinson” (Comedy): A new unscripted, interview-based series from the multi-talented stand-up comedian, best-selling writer and actress also known as one half of 2 Dope Queens. Celebrity guests including Gabrielle Union, Ashley Graham, Hasan Minhaj, Amber Ruffin and Dulcé Sloan take us into their world and Robinson out of her comfort zone.
April 10 – “Lust: A Seven Deadly Sins Story” (Lifetime): Executive producers T.D. Jakes and Shaun Robinson present the first tale of the popular book series as a movie starring Keri Hilson, Tobias Truvillion, Durrell ‘Tank’ Babbs, Clifton Powell, LeToya Luckett and Ms. Juicy. “Future People: The Family of Donor 5114” (Disc+): Jason Momoa is executive producer of this documentary, filmed over eight years, following a group of adolescents who discover that they were conceived from the same sperm donor, forming an unlikely family of familiar strangers. There are presently 37 half-siblings and counting. “Saturday Night Live” (NBC): Kid Cudi is the musical guest with Carey Mulligan hosting.
April 11 – “The People V. The Klan” (CNN): The four-part docuseries tells the little-known true story of Beulah Mae Donald, a Black mother in Mobile, Alabama, who took down the Ku Klux Klan after the brutal murder and lynching of her 19-year-old son, Michael Donald. The series shines a light on the too-often marginalized agents of change in our society: The Black mothers of the movement, alongside the activists and attorneys who fight for racial equality in America. “Unsung” (TV1): Keith Washington “Uncensored” (TV1): Kem
April 12 – “Independent Lens” (PBS): “Down A Dark Stairwell” (PBS): Chronicles the tragic shooting in Brooklyn of Akai Gurley, an innocent Black man, and the trial of the Chinese-American police officer, Peter Liang, who pulled the trigger, casting a powerful light on the experiences of two marginalized communities thrust into an uneven criminal justice system together. “AfroPoP: The Ultimate Cultural Exchange” (World): Director Tamara Dawit’s “Finding Sally” documents her journeys to Ethiopia to untangle the 40-year-old mystery of the activist aunt she never knew. “Making The Case With Yodit” (BlackNews): A new series focusing on top stories with legal analysis by attorney Yodit Tewolde. “The Tonight Show” (NBC): Snoop Dogg, H.E.R.
April 13 – “Finding Your Roots” (PBS): Henry Louis Gates Jr. traces pre-U.S. ancestors of John Lithgow and Maria Hinojosa.
April 14 – “Dad Stop Embarrassing Me!” (Netflix): Jamie Foxx stars in this sitcom based on his relationship with daughter Corinne Foxx, who joins him as an executive producer. Kyla-Drew and David Alan Grier round out the cast. “Live @ Home” (AXS): Maroon 5
April 15 – “Restaurant Recovery” (Disc+): Restaurateur and philanthropist Todd Graves helps struggling eatery owners recover from the COVID-19 pandemic. Along the way, he also has some high-profile friends lend a hand, including Nelly, football’s Roquan Smith and Michael Thomas, the Rebirth Brass Band, Grammy-Award winning group La Mafia, and basketball legend Shaquille O’Neal. “Latin American Music Awards” (Telemundo): Singer/actor José Luis “El Puma” Rodríguez will receive the Legend Award and perform. “Top Chef” (Bravo): Gregory Gourdet and Kwame Onwuachi take the chefs on a tour of restaurants in Portland that feature food from the African diaspora. “Joseline’s Cabaret: Miami” (WE): Follows “Love & Hip-Hop Atlanta” superstar alum Joseline Hernandez in her hometown as she creates a sensual cabaret featuring her own original music and a group of dancers who aren’t quite ready to fall in line just yet.
TASTY QUIP: “I think most white people and Black people are great people. I really believe that in my heart. But I think our system is set up where our politicians, whether they are Republicans or Democrats, are designed to make us not like each other so they can keep their grasp of money and power. They divide and conquer.” – CHARLES BARKLEY on CBS
As featured in the Los Angeles Wave and Independent, Tasty Clips is one of the leading entertainment columns in the nation, serving nearly one million weekly readers. Bill Vaughan may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org, via Twitter @tastyclips, or Instagram @tasty_clips.