3 Years in the Game

I must admit, I’m somewhat surprised that 3 years later this blog is still standing. I still remember my first post and wondering just where exactly I was going with this thing. I still have questions at times, but my focus has always been to provide articles and material that hopefully educates, enlightens and at least on occasion, entertains you, the readers.

A lot has changed since September of 2011. In the three years since we’ve seen the rise of filmmakers like Issa Rae who used her webseries “Awkward Black Girl” as a platform into other ventures including a still yet to be released TV show on HBO. Lupita Nyong’o has gone from aspiring actress to an Oscar winner and household name. On the production side, Shonda Rhimes’ television empire has only continued to grow as she now has THREE shows airing on primetime this season.

Of course not all has been positive. Outside of the industries there have been the continued killings of unarmed black men by police at a rate there’s have left me at times wondering what I would do in such situations. People of color still continue to often be left out in ad campaigns and major motion pictures as leading men and women. Despite all that, we still rise.

I just want to say once again THANK YOU to all of you who read this blog and even more, share it with others. I don’t have ads on this site because it’s not about clicks, but connectivity to an audience that often feels neglected and forgotten about. Let’s continue to keep getting educated together. Peace.

My 2012 Movie of the Year and Moving Ahead to 2013

As I look back at 2012 I see a year of progress and a year to build on.

2012 was the year that internet sensation and Youtube star, Issa Rae (who created, produced and directed the hit series Awkward Black Girl) teamed up with Shonda Rhimes to collaborate for an upcoming comedy series for ABC. This development was huge for Rae of course, but it also marked the first time a webisode focusing on a character of color paved the way for a transition to the small screen. The web is increasingly becoming a backdoor way to breaking into traditional forms of media, like film and television.

2012 was the year that Matthew Cherry directed his first feature film, “The Last Fall” and saw it receive critical acclaim along with a number of accolades.

2012 was also the year that Ava DuVernay’s distribution company, AFFRM, released “Restless City” and my film of the year, “Middle of Nowhere.” “Middle of Nowhere,” revolves around the relationships of the main character, Ruby (Emayatzy Corinealdi), with her imprisoned husband, family, and busdriver turned lover (David Oyelowo). The cinematography is beautiful and the scenes poignant. The film does a good job letting the audience follow along as Ruby deals with varying degrees of hurt, mistrust, love, acceptance and discovery.

Finally, 2012 marked the first full calendar year of FilmSwag’s existence. I definitely appreciate all of you who have checked out this blog and recommended it to your friends. So far FilmSwag has been viewed by people in more than 40 countries on 6 different continents (one day I’ll get someone in Antarctica). I definitely have more topics and things I’ll be covering in 2013. Also, if you guys have anything you’d like to see me cover reach out to me at: warin@filmswag.org. I’ll be posting more photos, videos, and also looking to incorporate screenings and events for those of you in the NYC area. Peace, Love, and Happy New Year Everyone.