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“I’m Taking Back What’s Mine” Thandiwe Newton Reclaims Her Original Name

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Thandie Newton is reverting to the original Zimbabwean spelling of her first name, Thandiwe.

In a recent interview with British Vogue for an article dubbed The Rebirth of an Icon, the daughter of a Zimbabwean princess and a former scientist from Cornwall said it’s time to take her name back, “That’s my name. It’s always been my name. I’m taking back what’s mine.”

Newton revealed that thanks to a misspelling in the credits of her first film, 1991’s Flirting, also starring Nicole Kidman and Noah Taylor, she has gone by Thandie for the past three decades.

From now on, she says, all of her films and television work would be credited with the name Thandiwe (pronounced ‘tan-DEE-way’), which means “beloved” in Zulu.

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Interviews

Campbell Addy Feels Seen In NatGeo’s Newest Documentary ‘Photographer’

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Campbell Addy Photographer

Campbell Addy gets candid about his life and art in the new docuseries from National Geographic.

‘Photographer’ is a six-part documentary collection featuring seven visual artists who take on significant projects and invite viewers on the journey. Award-winning filmmakers E. Chai Vasarhelyi and Jimmy Chin share interwoven backstories, archival interviews, and verité footage to unveil the intimate process behind creating some of the most iconic photography masterpieces.

Episode four, titled ‘Feeling Seen,’ features the story of the award-winning British Ghanaian photographer Campbell Addy. It examines different facets of Addy’s life, such as his art, family, heritage, faith, and identity.

A brilliant visionary, Addy photographed celebrities from Beyonce to Meghan Markle before the age of 30. In ‘Photographers,’ we follow the creative as he prepares for his solo exhibition in London. This is a turning point in his career, where he gets to redefine himself as an artist. Addy’s art show, ‘I Love Campbell,’ carries a simple yet powerful message, shifting the focus from the photographer’s high-fashion pieces to highlight his most intimate and comprehensive works to date.

When first approached to participate in the documentary, Addy tells Hollywood Melanin he had doubts. “At first, I didn’t think it was real. I remember sitting down with [my team], and we spoke about what I planned to do. I get to meet these wonderful people; if it works, it’s great; if it doesn’t, it’s also fine.”

Bold, vulnerable, and honest, Addy’s episode in the ‘Photographer’ shows a side of the artist the public hasn’t seen before. The 30-year-old says telling things as is was his intention from the very beginning. “This was the only way I could do it. I needed to be honest, I needed to be authentic and I needed to make sure I’m telling a story that is important. It isn’t just about the image. It’s a lot more than that.”

With so many masterpieces already out there, Addy, in true artist fashion, says he has no favorites. “It’s like choosing a favorite child,” he laughs.

The saying about experiences shaping who we are could not be more true for Addy, whose journey through life is most certainly reflected in his work. His art encompasses it all – from the challenges of being raised in a strict religious household to the pushback he encountered as a queer Black artist. Would he have it any other way? Addy says, “Hard ‘no’ on going back. I’ve come too far. I used to do it a lot. That kind of energy would put you in a bad place. I am in a space of ‘yesterday has happened’ and ‘tomorrow doesn’t exist’. I’m here now, so. There is nothing ’cause then I wouldn’t be me.”

Watch National Geographic’s ‘Photographer,’ now available to stream on Disney+.

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Jeffrey Wright and Ilfenesh Hadera Join Denzel Washington in Spike Lee’s ‘High and Low’

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High and Low

In a highly anticipated collaboration, acclaimed actor Jeffrey Wright and Ilfenesh Hadera have joined the cast of Spike Lee’s upcoming film, ‘High and Low.’ The film, described as a reimagining of the classic Akira Kurosawa thriller, also stars Denzel Washington.

Known for his roles in films like ‘Basquiat,’ ‘The Hunger Games’ series, and ‘Westworld,’ Jeffrey Wright was most recently nominated for an Academy Award for his performance in American Fiction. His ability to embody complex characters and deliver powerful performances makes him a perfect fit for this new Spike Lee joint.

The upcoming film will mark a reunion for Hadera and Washington, who co-starred in ‘The Equalizer 2.’ The Godfather of Harlem star also previously collaborated with Lee on his acclaimed Netflix series ‘She’s Gotta Have It,’ based on his classic 1986 film and his movies ‘Chi-Raq’ and ‘Oldboy’.

‘High and Low’ also marks the fifth collaboration between Lee and Washington, who previously worked together on ‘Mo’ Better Blues,’ ‘He Got Game,’ ‘Inside Man,’ and ‘Malcolm X.’ Washington’s performance in ‘The Tragedy of Macbeth’ was also released by A24.

The film is being developed and produced by A24, a production company known for its slate of thought-provoking and award-worthy films. It is described as a thriller and an English-language reinterpretation of Akira Kurosawa’s 1963 crime thriller, which told the story of a shoe executive who was in the middle of a complex corporate takeover when his plans were derailed by the accidental kidnapping and ransom of his chauffeur’s son instead of his son.

The film will begin production this month, with a theatrical release before its global launch on Apple TV+.

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Regina King and Guests Attend The Los Angeles Premiere of ‘Shirley’

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Oscar-winner Regina King recently attended the Los Angeles premiere of her latest film, ‘Shirley.’ The highly anticipated biopic chronicles the life and political career of Shirley Chisholm, the first Black woman to be elected to the United States Congress and the first Black woman to run for President.

The premiere, held on March 21, 2024, drew a star-studded crowd, with King taking center stage as both the lead actress and one of the film producers. She was joined by her sister, Reina King, who also served as a producer on the project.

The film, directed by John Ridley and written by Rebecca Hall, explores the life and career of Shirley Chisholm, who was a trailblazer in American politics. The story follows her journey from her early days as a teacher and community activist to her historic run for the presidency in 1972.

Regina King and Reina King speak onstage during Netflix’s ‘Shirley’ Los Angeles Premiere at The Egyptian Theatre Hollywood on March 19, 2024 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Charley Gallay/Getty Images for Netflix)

At the premiere, Regina King spoke about the importance of telling Chisholm’s story and the impact she had on American politics. “Shirley was a true maverick, and, you know, we use this term all the time, but she was a true first,” King said. “She was the first Black woman to be elected to Congress and the first Black woman to run for President. Her story is one that needs to be told and I’m honored to be a part of bringing it to the screen.”

The film also stars Lance Reddick as Chisholm’s husband, Conrad Chisholm, and features a powerful supporting cast that includes actors like Jeffrey Wright, André Holland, and Michael K. Williams.

The premiere celebrated Shirley Chisholm’s legacy. Attendees were treated to a special screening of the film, followed by a Q&A session with the cast and crew.

Regina King’s performance in the film has already garnered critical acclaim, with many praising her portrayal of Chisholm as both powerful and nuanced. In an interview with Variety, King spoke about the challenges of playing such a significant historical figure. “It was important to me to show the humanity in her and to show that she was a real person who had real struggles and real triumphs,” she said.

The film is set to be released on Netflix on March 22, 2024. Watch the trailer below.

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