New Short Films, “Tangled Roots” & “Gloves Off” to Premiere, Saturday June 13, 2020 on BET
NEW YORK, NY (June 11, 2020) – Procter & Gamble, the world’s largest advertiser, Queen Latifah, and Tribeca Studios announce the broadcast premiere of the year two films from the Queen Collective program. This year’s films produced by aspiring filmmakers Samantha Knowles, Nadine Natour and Ugonna Okpaloaka shine light on the inequality and bias that continues to permeate our country with the intent to spark dialogue that leads to understanding, action and lasting change.
The Queen Collective program was designed to give filmmakers of color a platform to tell important stories about issues directly impacting their community. The program continues its effort to accelerate gender and racial equality in front and behind the camera by opening doors for the next generation of multicultural women directors through mentoring, production support, and distribution opportunities.
BET will serve as the exclusive distribution partner and will premiere the films on June 13 at 9:00 pm ET/PT on BET and BET Her with an encore on Sunday, June 14 at 12:00 pm and 1:00 pm ET/PT on BET Her.
Procter & Gamble together with Queen Latifah and Tribeca Studios selected three directors who were asked to submit a treatment for an original short documentary that focuses on a social issue and inspires positive social change.
Samantha Knowles, director of “Tangled Roots” produced a film that follows women activists, lawmakers, and mothers as they fight to dismantle a system of discrimination against black people who are penalized for something seemingly innocuous — their hair. Nadine Natour and Ugonna Okpalaoka, are co-directors of “Gloves Off,” a story that follows a young African American police officer in Washington D.C. that is fighting for her community by day, then laces up as a champion boxer to fight for her title by night.
“Through programs like the Queen Collective we are using our convening power to address the need to increase diversity in the creative pipeline,” said Marc Pritchard, P&G Chief Brand Officer. For years we have used our voice as a leading advertiser to highlight bias and shine a light on systemic issues of inequality. We will continue using our voice as a force for good and force for growth to provide empathy and action to drive lasting change."
“BET is committed to moving the racial and gender equity mission forward by shifting perceptions through content, so we couldn’t be more proud to be the home of the Queen Collective films, and to be forging new connections with female filmmakers of color,” said Tavia Pitts, Head of BET HER, Vice President of Ad Sales. “The future of the media industry is predicated on our ability to minimize the barriers for entry for diverse creatives, and that has never been more important than now.”
“Queen Collective is a crucial program supporting diverse voices in film and empowering women filmmakers of color to tell stories that evoke change and unite and heal communities,” said Paula Weinstein, Tribeca Studio’s Chief Content Officer. “We are so proud to share the work of these amazing filmmakers. These powerful stories stand shoulder to shoulder in a fight against discrimination, injustices, and bias---they needed to be told, they needed to be told now and they needed to be told by women of color. I hope that we all learn, share and grow from them.”
Less than 10% of commercials and movies are created by women, creating a huge disparity between opportunities given to men vs. women, and ultimately leading to a lack of diversity and accurate representation of women and women of color. While we are seeing some progress, much more effort is required. The four films produced across the two-year Queen Collective directly address societal issues such as homelessness, domestic abuse, bias and discrimination. Viewers can catch both year one and year two films on June 13 and June 14.