Covering Cinema From All Across The African Diaspora

Good Friday Morning!


It's Friiiiiiiiiiidaaaaaay!

So, who's planning on seeing Madea Goes To Jail this weekend? I actually considered it, if only so that I can review it on this blog. It's been awhile since I wrote a full review of a film, since I haven't seen very much worth reviewing in awhile - at least within the realm of what we call "black cinema." I passed on Not Easily Broken and Notorious last month, and, Medicine For Melancholy aside (which I actually saw last year), there hasn't been much else in release, both on the indie and mainstream fronts, since then... until now, thanks to the ever-prolific Tyler Perry! Box office tracking pros are predicting Madea takes this weekend with a $20+ Million opening, none of it contributed by me.

I am planning on seeing a film called Prince of Broadway tomorrow afternoon, as part of the African Diaspora films @ BAM festivities. I've written about that film on this blog a few times, but never seen it. Here's my opportunity, which will be followed by, hopefully, my first review of the year.

Also on my "to-see" list this weekend (Sunday specifically) is a film called Gospel Hill, Giancarlo Esposito's directorial debut, which stars Angela Bassett, Danny Glover, Samuel L Jackson, Nia Long, and a few other notables. I've also written about this film on this blog previously, which you can read HERE.

So, provided my plans aren't interrupted, I should have 2 funky fresh reviews for you before the weekend is over!

Side note: CABLEVISION'S INTERNET SERVICE SUCKS!!!! Living in Brooklyn, my options for service are limited, and Cablevision's Optimum Online dominates. Every single day, I experience drops in my connection; I've called their customer service center for repairs, and on both occasions, the technicians have come and gone, promising final solutions to my connection problems, only to disappoint! It's annoying when one is paying monthly for a service but isn't getting the kind of service one expects. I'd gladly cancel my account with Cablevision, but, again, that would likely mean I wouldn't have Internet access, since they practically own all of Brooklyn. Obviously, every service provider has its flaws. I'm sure if I talked to a Time Warner subscriber, or a Verizon FIOS subscriber, they would have their own sets of complaints about each; but, at this juncture, I'd be willing to give one of the others a try!

So, anyway... what else is going on?

With Oscar weekend looming, If you haven't already, be sure to check out Sergio Mims's interview with Academy Award nominee Viola Davis over at Ebony/ If you've been reading this blog, you'll know how much I appreciate Viola's work, and how unfortunate I feel it is that she isn't on our screens more often.

And speaking of Tyler Perry above, The Hollywood Reporter printed a 3-page piece on its website titled "Tyler Perry Inc: The world stage is the next goal for the Perry brand." I'm sure you can guess what it's about. But it's an interesting read. The man wants to take over the world with Madea and company!

Some interesting notes from the piece:

Perry still performs in the medium that made him famous - theatre... with as many as 30,000-40,000 people a week showing up for his plays, he is one of the biggest theater draws in the country, including Broadway. He communicates with fans by way of an e-mail newsletter, and often sells out shows via online ticketing. Perry also wrote a book, "Don't Make a Black Woman Take Off Her Earrings," which has sold 650,000 copies.

Wow! 30,000 to 40,000 people shelling out cash to see the man on stage? I'm not sure how much each ticket costs, but assuming it's in the $25 to $50 range, a safe assumption, it means TP's stage productions alone are raking in up to $2 Million weekly, and maybe more! No wonder Forbes magazine ranks him 3rd on its list of highest earning African American celebrities. And while I'm not privy to the business side of the publishing world, I'd say selling 650,000 copies of any book seems like a pretty solid number.

Check out the THR piece HERE.

One last Tyler Perry note (what can I say, the man is every-freaking-where... you can't throw a stone these days without hitting Tyler Perry or something he's attached to): Apparently he's courting Jennifer Hudson to star in his next project. Which one? I don't know. Last I heard, he was courting Diana Ross for "his next project." He IS Mr Prolific. According to EURweb, he's already written a script specifically for J-Hud to star in, and he claims she's long expressed interest in working with him; so, one can expect this to eventually be formally announced.

And thanks to TMZ, a police photo of the bruised and battered face of R&B/pop star Rihanna, post her scuffle with fellow "idol" and boyfriend (hopefully now ex-boyfriend), Chris Brown, has landed on the web, and is quickly circulating. I won't post it here, but I'm sure you can easily find it if you looked for it!

Lastly, I'm sure you all have been following the uproar over the New York Post dead monkey cartoon editorial fiasco. I haven't posted anything about it because I don't think one is warranted. I'm with Jay Smooth of IllDoctrine on this one. Don't feed the troll:


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