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AFRO-SURREALISM & AFRO-FUTURISM EXPLORED Virtual Table REad

On July 26th at 12:30pm to 3pm, we will be hosting our second virtual table-read. Our goal with this series of table-reads is to center and amplify the voices of those underrepresented creatives within the film genre of Science Fiction- our theme is Afro-futurism & Afro-Surrealism.

We have an amazing group of talented actors/readers, and other filmmakers that will be participating.

It’s an excellent opportunity to hear some very well written and vetted works, and to connect these works with visionaries, talent as well as constructive feedback for better growth and development.

The virtual table-read will not be streamed live for the public out of respect for the confidentiality of the writers and their works. We are asking all our friends, viewers and attendees to sign a nondisclosure to again protect the confidentiality of the writers and their works.

We have included the confidentiality form for your convenience where you can e-sign HERE

Once we automatically receive the form, we will send you a formal invitation with all the details and zoom information included.

We have also included a list of the participants and readers below:

Screenwriter Tony Patrick recently participated in The Sundance New Frontier Worldbuilding Residency. He is an extremely gifted screenwriter whose short film Black Card, aired on HBO and Cinemax following a lengthy film-festival run. His creator-owned comic book, X’ED, was published by Black Mask Studios (2015) and he's currently the co-writer of DC Comics' Batman and The Signal (2018) along with New York Times best-selling author Scott Snyder. And funny enough, he also moved to South Asia and took a hiatus. He also has history in selling his features and has worked as a staff writer for a network sitcom.

Filmmaker/Entrepreneur Michelle Johnson - attended UCLA as an undergrad (of which she's an alumni), worked at Paramount and later Women in Film, as well as in education. She directed and wrote a few projects that allowed her to get accepted into the CBS Director’s Initiative, Sponsored by Kodak, and win a few awards. This made a way for her to get a feature optioned. As a graduate student she was accepted into a program for the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), that allowed her to eventually become an advisor over a project where she was able to work with one of the most prestigious art schools in South Asia and allowed her to live in South Asia for a period of time.

Actress Staci N'Kosi earned her BA in Theatre Arts & Dance and her MA in Theatre Arts with an emphasis on Womanism and Black Female Identity from California State University, Los Angeles. She is a theatre practitioner specializing in investigating the roles and multiple identities of African women in the Diaspora. She has worked on stage in several Los Angeles stage productions, is a former acting member of the Robey Theatre Company and has twice been nominated for NAACP Theatre Awards. Staci has also worked in independent film, on television, as a voiceover artist, an orator, and performance poet. Also a playwright, Staci is following up her meta-theatrical solo piece, Beloved Woman, Mother, and Wife with a full-length play. Before joining the faculty of Pan African Studies, as a Theater Professor, Staci developed and facilitated a theatrical program for high school students in the Pasadena Unified School District and is a former adjunct faculty member of Theatre Arts & Dance at CSULA.

Filmmaker Ruby Flores has worked and collaborated with a variety of music directors from Jessy Terrero, Melina Matsoukas, Chris Robinson, Benny Boom, Diane Martell in the production of ground-breaking music videos through the pre-visualization process and the creating of storyboards. Ruby began her filmmaking career as a storyboard artist which enabled her to work with a plethora of amazing industry professionals. She has also worked directly with FilmTV director Darnell Martin and Jada Pinkett Smith on their feature film & TV projects for Overbrook Entertainment and Harpo Films/ABC TV. She has worn many hats from directing 2-unit, shooting and editing - as well as breaking through the status quo as an LGBTQ-POC and taking the helm in a predominately white male film industry.

Actor Eric Hinojosa is a Mexican American director as well as entrepreneur. He has directed videos for companies like Red Bull, Nike including a Pepsi commercial for the 2016 World Cup. Eric speaks 5 languages and has spent over 10 years living and filming abroad, including a television campaign in Iraq for USAID. Filming and sometimes living in Syria, Brazil, Egypt, India and many more countries has given his work an international aesthetic, drawing inspiration from many cultural traditions. As an entrepreneur, Eric is the CEO and founder of 3rd Rail Digital, a post production house that employs nearly 40 editors and edits 70 videos a week, with clients that include major corporations as well as the biggest youtubers in the world.

Actor & Performance Artist Dez'Mon Omega Fair is an interdisciplinary artist and poet living in Long Beach, California. Their work explores storytelling and self-reflection to delineate the cathartic opening of joyance availed by the art making process. Their unique approach is achieved through expressive art and painting utilizing water, brushless watercolor, and ink on washi (diaphanous paper). They have made collaborative documentary film projects as well as experimental forms of poetry. Dez'Mon's pioneering novel sonics were shared on both Spotify and YouTube where it explores the use of long-form soundscape and audio recordings of riddles, prose, poems and chants. Their public performances are large-scale and site-specific. Their extraordinarily immersive installations consist of figurative watercolor paintings and poetry sourced from abstractions of the heart and emotional histories of the body. Dez'Mon also prearranges funereal ceremonies and rituals for families worldwide.

Actor Michael Aguilar is a Mexican American Los Angeles based organic fashion designer, documentarian, and activist. In 2008 Michael moved to Thailand to train as an international human rights organizer working with marginalized communities. He continued learning and organizing alongside local communities in Dominican Republic, Vietnam, Morocco and Bolivia. In 2015 he produced his first documentary Mountains of Resistance, showcasing indigenous resitance to gold mining in Mexico. Connecting the arts to activism has become his passion exploring acting and also co-founding the sustainable fashion lifestyle brand MYM Organics.

Turkish Actor Tan Arcan has worked on a plethora productions from Bosnia, Iran, Turkey, and Nigeria as well as the United States where his acting has been showcased in award winning short films from around the world. He earned his Bachelor of Fine Arts in Film production from University of Central Florida and is a member of the faculty for New York Film Academy.

Actor John Henry Richardson is A familiar face to the Hollywood entertainment industry, having appeared in over 300 films, TV shows, plays and commercials, John Henry likes to mix it up. Currently he can be seen as a salty sea dog in the new children’s movie, NESSIE & ME. On Television, he co-stars in the new crime drama series, FATHER MILITANT, as a tough cop searching for a serial killer. And keep an eye out for him in the new episodic FOX TV series, LEGENDS AND LIES co-starring as William Seward, the wily Secretary of State to Abraham Lincoln. He stars in the popular web-series, CASTLEVANIA—Hymn Of Blood, as Reinhart Belmont, the last knight of The Brotherhood of Light. Coming soon, watch for JHR directing and starring as himself in WHERE IS SHE NOW? a new-genre DocuMystery film (Winner of 33 International Awards for Best Film and Best Director at the London, Berlin, Sweden, Los Angeles, New York and Hollywood Film Festivals.) He is currently working on the new spinoff TV series WHERE ARE WE NOW? filmed on location in Mumbai, The Bahamas, Berlin, Prague and Paris.

Actor Mudit Verma is also a comedian, writer, storyteller, and content creator from the DMV (DC, MD, VA) area. Mudit is an avid mental health advocate. When performing, Mudit engages with audiences by speaking about his personal mental health experiences in conjunction with his Indian cultural upbringing. Mudit holds degrees in psychology, pharmacy, and leadership studies from the University of Maryland and applies his knowledge to the vast majority of his art. Mudit's comedy and storytelling largely pertain to his South Asian American experience and he optimizes his delivery by incorporating silly puns along with quirky expressions. Furthermore, Mudit has passionate interests in social justice, political engagement, and healthcare as he is continuously developing substantive comedic content relating to these pertinent areas.

Korean Japanese Brazilian actress Steffie Baik is not only a young actress but also a model represented by Whilhelmina. She has worked with Gucci, Nike, Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar, Grazia, Baja East, Benefit Cosmetics, China Glaze, as well as Beats by Dre. She has been featured in several upcoming short films.

Actor Greg Kennedy is a Los Angeles based Writer/Actor originally from Thomasville, North Carolina. A self proclaimed "Cinephile" his passion for film has always provided an outlet for him to express himself, and at times escape. Greg grew up in theater participating in school, church, and community theater, eventually filming his first film his senior year of high school; and making his way to Catawba College where he was a Theater and Sociology double major. Greg has had much success in Los Angeles's Independent Film scene, having done work both on camera, and as a part of many crews. His work has been featured in various festivals such as Essence Fest, The Bronze Lens Film Festival, The Montreal International Black Film Festival, The Black Hollywood Education and Resource Center Film Festival (BHERC), The Gary International Black Film Festival, and The La Femme International Film Festival; to name a few. He has also had equal success doing Sketch Comedy having studied at Groundlings for a term, and having been accepted into Second City’s Conservatory program shortly after, where he studied both Improv and Writing. A forever student to his various crafts, Greg has also studied with some of Hollywood's most notable acting coaches. Greg has had main stage shows at Second City Hollywood, Comedy Central Stage ,and UCB. Occasionally he can also be seen doing Live Theater around Los Angeles, and creating online content. A burgeoning writer, Greg takes his work very seriously and hopes to explore the vast and unique experiences of the Black American and Black LGBTQIA+ communities. Gregs dream is to help build space for Black creators to have autonomy of our stories and ownership of our work.

Actress Shalandra Collins is a writer, poet, lyricist, and model. She performs music under the stage name Poetree. Born July 3, 1989 in Dallas, TX. Collin's family moved to Atlanta, TX, a small town in Northeast Texas when she was still very young. Isolating herself into books every chance she got, she began writing poetry as not only a hobby but a release. This was the beginning of her becoming an Abundant Creative Woman. Today, Collins holds a Bachelor’s of Science in Psychology from Texas A&M University. She was involved in Pageants, in addition to Mental health, Domestic violence, and Substance abuse advocacy. She is currently working on several writing, and music projects. As an advocate and empath she shares the love of promoting awareness for love.

Actor Fabian Salaam is a musician and actor who hails from Chicago. He is best known as an amazing rapper/lyricist, musician and poet featured under his artist name Pharoah Salaam

Victor Hypolite – (Designer, Artist & Photographer) – having studied Interior Design and Mech Engineering, he has traveled and lived across the country working wherever a project took him as a Designer for Architects, Engineering Consultants & Custom Contractors. Currently working for the NYC Department of Education Computer Systems Project Manager, he has also worked on Lost Legends of the West as Second Camera Man and Stuntman. Onset Photographer for several projects including Jamaican Gypsy and Lourdes which were written and directed by Michelle Johnson.

We have additional actors and musicians on board such as SAG-AFTRA Victor Dwayne Little who is featured in the HBO short Native Son and musician Josephe Valente who will be a reader as well.

Thank you again and we hope to see you July 26th!!!!