*The 4th annual Micheaux Film Festival occurred in Downtown LA over the weekend. The week-long event featured a series of activations, film screenings, digital panels, master classes, workshops, and in-person ticketed events at the Regal Cinemas L.A. Live. In addition, this year, the festival partnered with Sony Pictures Entertainment for a sneak peek and Q&A of “The Woman King” starring Viola Davis.
“The Woman King” tells the real-life story of The Kingdom of Dahomey, one of the most powerful states of Africa in the 18th and 19th centuries. If you checked out Marvel’s “Black Panther,” you know these women inspired the Dora Milaje.
The film was directed by trailblazing filmmaker Gina Prince-Bythewood (Love & Basketball.) EURweb spoke exclusively with the director before her panel discussion with Nicole Brown (President, TriStar Pictures) and entertainment reporter Jasmine Simpkins.
Bythewood shared why this project is a passion project for her and how everything in her career has led her to this moment.
“Honestly, I feel like all my work up until this point has led me to make this film,” the director explained, “the fact that we’re in the era where I can make this film. It’s our Braveheart. It’s our history that we haven’t been able to see up on the screen. It’s being able to see ourselves reflected in this way as warriors in the fight. It’s just a beautiful thing, and I’m excited about it. So representing for women seeing ourselves as powerful and strong as leaders in this film.” Bythewood said viewers would be “stepping into a world that they have never seen before. You’re going to leave different.”
The panel discussion went into the story of how the film went from script to screen, the importance and significance of this never been told story and the power of inclusion in front and behind the camera.
“The Woman King” will be released on September 16.
Micheaux Film Festival Founders and Directors Noel Braham and Courtney Branch shared the festival’s goals in year four: “As we rapidly grow and transform, so does the need to showcase disruptive and avant-garde work. Creators and emerging filmmakers need a safe space to spotlight their projects while continuing to make meaningful and transformative art.”