If you don’t already know BEYOND THE LIGHTS is the film I can not stop talking about. I signed up for an amazing love story with beautiful characters that I knew I would instantly love because of all of the work I had seen in the past by director/writer Gina Prince-Bythewood. What I did not know was just how moved I would be by the film and I mean that in the best way possible. Love stories are timeless and are told in hundreds of different ways, Prince-Bythewood’s love stories are more grounded in reality than most we see and it is one of the things I have grown to love in her films. I walked in knowing I would be wowed, I did not know that it would be not only amazing but healing. BEYOND THE LIGHTS is a film about love, music and life, it has these wonderful life lessons, that I believe because of her ability to tell a well-rounded and grounded story, will stay with you for years to come. When I got the chance to sit down and talk about BEYOND THE LIGHTS with Gina we discussed the difficulties of making this project come to life, her very personal connection to the story, social media and being powerful women in the industry. From the story to the casting this movie was perfection and unknowingly, exactly what I needed to help in the healing process of a loss that has forever changed me. If I have learned anything about Gina Prince-Bythewood’s work nothing she does is by accident, it is all intentional without being so in your face that you feel as if there is a soapbox somewhere that you just can’t see, everything is done with the care and subtlety to make it count. Even in the song choices for the film the lyrics were perfectly tailored to not only the film but the emotion that you were feeling as a viewer, which makes each moment have so much more impact. The film makes a statement, it makes you hopefully think twice in the way you view celebrities, it makes you feel and most importantly it tells a heartfelt story about not only love, but life and what a beautiful gift it is to celebrate.
Check out our exclusive interview with Gina Prince-Bythewood for BEYOND THE LIGHTS and get to the theatres, if you haven’t already, to check out this film. Let’s show Hollywood that in 2014 casting actors should have less to do with the color of their skin and more to do with talent, show them that two talented African-American actors can lead a successful film and the only way to do that is by showing up at the box office. So go get your tickets and enjoy the beautiful and powerful BEYOND THE LIGHTS.