The 2015 American Black Film Festival took over NYC this weekend. And we have a few flicks of some YBF folks from inside and around the film festival. Check them out inside…
This year’s American Black Film Festival (ABFF) invaded NYC for the weekend to showcase an array of black films, new and classic. And of course, YBF folks were on the scene to support.
Yesterday, the Girlfriends Getaway cast, including Garcelle Beauvais, Malinda Williams, Essence Atkins and Terri J. Vaughn was front and center looking gorgeous at the sequel’s NYC premiere held at the AMC Empire.
We are LOVING Garcelle’s dress.
Actress Vanessa L. Williams came out to support the ladies and check out the chick flick.
Former “Girlfriends” star Khalil Kain was also in attendance. He snapped it up with the cast on the carpet.
Famed director John Singleton came out to support the ladies.
And former “The Wire” star Julito McCullum was in the mix.
At another event….
Chocolate City star and model Tyson Beckford was on the scene for the screening of his latest project, Supermodel held at AMC Empire in NYC. Before taking his seat inside, he snapped it up with his Supermodel co-star Angela Simmons.
The fashion flick was written and produced by Datari Turner (who also stars in the film) and directed by Shawn Baker. The remaining cast include Sessilee Lopez, Tatyana Ali, Fat Joe, Angela Simmons, Toccara Jones, Nichole Galicia, Marc John Jefferies, Adam Senn, Melissa De Sousa, Cassandra Freeman, and Roger Guenveur Smith.
Everyone came out to celebrate and watch the film (including us):
Below is a synopsis:
Supermodel is about a young girl from Brooklyn who escapes her neighborhood projects for the Bright lights and glamorous world of fashion. Chloe is quickly becoming one of the most sought after models in the business and is right on the verge of supermodel status, as she struggles to maintain her weight, and dealing with some of the ugly sides of the world’s most beautiful industry. With her personal life hanging by a thread, a cheating boyfriend on the verge of NBA stardom, a recovering alcoholic mother, a homeless father, and trying to be there for her closest friends with their own problems. Chloe must balance her volatile personal life and keep a smile on her face as she navigates stardom in the cut throat fashion business. A business where she is constantly reminded of the color of her skin, and drugs, and rival models who want to destroy her.
During the premiere, Tyson shared his thoughts on the disappearance/non-existence of the black model. He said,
“Oh…we’re already on our way. If you haven’t seen it…we’re already on the way out the door. There are less billboards. If you go outside right now, and count how many black images are on a billboard, you’ll see for yourself.”
“It’s just like how in the movie (“Supermodel”) they go through the comp cards…I’ve been there. I’ve seen it. It’s like a secret that’s in that industry that they pick and choose who they want.”
“I don’t know if they don’t want us to have as many as them. Or keep us at a certain level, but it’s weird. I don’t get it. I’m not saying it has to all be us. I”m saying Latin, Asian – there’s a whole market that sometimes they don’t cater to. Yet we run out there and spend that money. It is what it is.”
Former “Basketball Wives” star Jennifer Williams showed off her svelte figure in a white bodycon mini.
At another event….
“Power” star Naturi Naughton posed it up with “Being Mary Jane” actress Salli Richardson-Whitfield as they styled it up in Byron Lars dresses at the closing “Best of the ABFF” Awards Ceremony.
During the ceremony, “black•ish” actress Jennifer Williams was honored with the Career Achievement Award, presented by her co-star Tracee Ellis Ross.
Tracee posted a pic on Instagram saying, “I had the honor of presenting my TV mother in law and all around powerhouse @jeniferlewisforreal with the @americanblackfilmfestival Career Achievement Award last night! With over 300 TV and film appearances, she has had such a storied and incredible career and still so much more to go!! Kudos to you Jenny!! #blackish #ABFF2015”
We spotted fab chicks Salli Richardson Whitfield, Tracee Ellis Ross and Lisa Arrindell Anderson, who won the Best Actress award, backstage at the ABFF end of festival Awards.
At the “Hot In Hollywood” panel….
TheYBF.com’s founder Natasha Eubanks moderated an insightful discussion with a few YBF celebs for the ABFF’s “Hot In Hollywood” panel. “Power” star Naturi Naughton, “Crisis” & “Grey’s Anatomy” star Lance Gross, American Sniper actor Cory Hardrict and “Whitney” star Yaya DaCosta (not pictured) talked about being black in Hollywood.
During the discussion, each of them shared one of their biggest setbacks in their careers and how they got over it.
Lance Gross revealed he’s quite shy and gets major anxiety from public speaking. He explained, “That was the one thing I had to get over because it was holding me back.”
Yaya Dacosta talked about transitining from odeling to acting stating, “I had a lot of resistance because I participated in ‘Top Model.’ For so long directors and producers wouldn’t take me seriously. I had to pretend it didn’t happen for seven years.”
Cory Hardrict opened up about his his biggest set back. He revealed, “In the beginning of my career I lost my mom in Chicago.” The Brotherly Love star said after her death, he didn’t want to act any longer. It was his mom’s spirit, though, that helped him get ready for a comeback.
Naturi Naughton told the crowd about all that girl group drama. When she turned 18, she was pushed out of the group 3LW and it was difficult for her to define herself. She said she felt scorned and jaded by the industry and didn’t want anything to do with it. She went to college (majoring in Political Science at Seaton Hall University), then decided to get back into the limelight. Now, she’s starring on the hit cable series “Power”.