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FLY Interviews: The Cast of ‘Sorry To Bother You’ Heap High Praise For Director Boots Riley

(l to r.) Lakeith Stanfield and director Boots Riley on the set of SORRY TO BOTHER YOU, an Annapurna Pictures release.

Sorry To Bother You is easily one of the year’s highly anticipated films of the Summer not to involve comic book heroes. Critics have been in love with rapper turned director Boots Riley’s trippy cinematic ride loosely based on his experiences as a telemarketer since its Sundance premiere. In the film, we follow unemployed Cassius Green (Lakeith Stanfield) who quickly rises through the ranks of a telemarketing company when he masters the art of using his “white voice.”

(l to r.) Lakeith Stanfield as Cassius Green and Danny Glover as Langston star in Boots Riley’s SORRY TO BOTHER YOU, an Annapurna Pictures release.

SFPL’s own Bernard Smalls and other invited press got a chance to sit down with the film’s cast and director to discuss what is arguably one of the best films of the year. When asked what was one thing that resonated about this film for them the cast all agreed it was Boots’ story and his authenticity. Stanfield gets the Boot’s praise train rolling stating:

“I think the common thread here is this guy’s mind right here. He wrote some crazy story that like it moved us all in some way, form, or fashion and I think all of us to some degree knew it was an opportunity to, to embark on something unlike we’ve done before. Something really different. It was just a cool opportunity that Boots Gave us not only to explore this cool story, his mind, and give us the gift of his imagination but also for our careers to be able to stretch ourselves and get into this new world.”

(l to r.) Jermaine Fowler as Salvador, Steven Yuen as Squeeze and Lakeith Stanfield as Cassius Green star in Boots Riley’s SORRY TO BOTHER YOU, an Annapurna Pictures release.

His costars followed suit, Steven Yeun who plays Squeeze in the film added: “I think it’s the same thing. When you read a script that is this authentic. Anyone can make I guess a script that people haven’t seen before because you can just write a bunch of gobbledygook on it but Boots wrote a script where you read it, and you go this is something I’ve never seen before, but it’s also super honest in the way that it’s written.”

Omari Hardwick stars as Mr. _____ in director Boots Riley’s SORRY TO BOTHER YOU, an Annapurna Pictures release.

Omari Hardwick who plays Cassius’ boss Mr. Blank in the film had plenty of praise for Boots adding: “The hunger added to the brilliance that he put on the page and the story he had. To Lakeith’s point, we looked at it, and he was the common thread. There was hunger in Boots, so we also got on that train of hunger.” Tessa Thompson who plays Cassius’ free-spirited love interest Detroit raves about Boots making a fun film that still delivers a message. “I love making movies that are about something but I also just feel like, “How do we talk about old ideas in new ways? How do we make something that is vital and important and feels like a solvent but doesn’t feel like medicine?” And I thought that Boots did that. Making a film that is about something but is also just a fun ride as well,” Thompson adds.

Tessa Thompson stars as Detroit in Boots Riley’s SORRY TO BOTHER YOU, an Annapurna Pictures release.

The cast also spoke on whether or not they had to use “code switching” or in the case of the film “using your white voice.”

Lakeith: “There’s something I think unspoken in a young black kids household. If you want to go out and be something in the world you’re going to have to be white. Or you’re going to have to be whiter or you’re going to have to adopt something that is accepted in a whiter sense. And for little kids what does that really mean? And for little poor black kids what it means is that everything that you are and everything that you stand for is the antithesis of that.”

Tessa: “I felt, certainly early on in my career was like an expectation of like performative blackness. Why the hair color was significant to me, I recently had a conversation with a filmmaker about a role, and in the original screenplay, it’s written that the character I would play has pink hair and I was asking him about it. I’m not eager to have my hair look similar to Detroit anyways but I was like oh cool so what about this color hair, and he says oh that was when the character was going to be white. That’s when it was written for another actress. Which I just thought was interesting. The conversation is ongoing in terms of what this character will look like, but it was interesting to me.”

To wrap things up, Boots was asked what the one thing he wanted moviegoers to leave with after watching his film? His answer was fascinating stating he didn’t want viewers to exit the theater with just one message.

Boots: “I don’t want people to walk away with one thing you know. It’s kind of like what’s the one thing that you that you walked away from with Song Solomon or from Gabriel Garcia Marquez A Hundred Years of Solitude. I approach this in a way like a novel. With all these ideas I can tell you I have hopes and dreams for. There are some things that I’m hoping for more than others, but I want people to feel like I took so much from. You know how they have those movies where there is the one thing and that’s what the movies about and then they stretch it out, and they like damn I hope we can get 80 minutes out of this and you feel them stretching that out. That’s not this movie. I do hope overall there’s a feeling of that through the craziness, through all the fucked-up things that happened that there’s an optimism that has to do with the idea that as long as you’re fighting that’s the happy ending. There is no ending but that the happiness the optimism comes with fighting pushing back.”

(l to r.) Tessa Thompson, Lakeith Stanfield, director Boots Riley, and Jermaine Fowler on the set of SORRY TO BOTHER YOU, an Annapurna Pictures release.

Well said Boots, Sorry To Bother You hits select theaters July 6th, and nationwide July 13th. Do yourself a favor and make sure you see this film, we absolutely loved it and definitely think it’s going to garner plenty of Oscar buzz deservingly so.

Photo: Annapurna Pictures

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‘That Ain’t Me’: ‘Power’ Season 4, Episode 409, Powerful Moments Recap!

Fly ones we have a lot to unpack in the world of Power so let’s get to it. We took a week off from bringing you our recaps thanks in large part to last week’s episode being leaked and messing up the whole flow. So lets just jump into tonight’s very emotional episode that definitely had folks yelling at their television screens!

PHOTOS: STARZ

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“You Lied To My Face”: Power, Season 4, Episode 407 POWERful Moments Recap!

Last week’s episode of Power did the absolute most in an hour! There were so many twist and turns squeezed into one episode that left everyone’s heads spinning and mind’s completely blown.

Ghost and Tommy lost a very loyal soldier in Julio thanks to Dre’s sneaky ass. Kanan flipped on Jukebox and decided to save Riq instead of exacting his revenge on Ghost by killing them both. On top of having to saving Riq, Ghost also learned his wife made a deal with his enemy Simon Stern forcing him into working with him again. Tommy almost had Christmas cancelled on himself when he went to Chicago alone, BUT thanks to his convincing story – he made it out of the windy city alive. Oh and he also made peace with Holly in his own way by beating Holly’s molesting ass Uncle’s head in with a baseball bat. BRUH!

Now that we are all caught up , let’s get into this week’s episode of Black America’s new favorite Sunday pastime Power!

The Fallout From The Failed Kidnapping!

Tonight’s episode opens up with Ghost and Riq’s extremely annoying ass riding the train after surviving a very traumatic ordeal.

Now we are sure you are wondering why Ghost and Riq are riding the train home instead of taking a Uber or something?

Well we are just going to assume that this is Ghost just trying to make sure there is no evidence of both him and Riq being anywhere near that murder scene. The two of them look absolutely dazed and hell it’s understandable, Riq almost lost his life and Ghost almost witnessed it. Hell lets not forget that Ghost also just saw the man he tried to flame broil not too long ago save his son. So there is definitely a lot of processing going on between the both of them during that train ride back home.

Tommy finally gets back in town and quickly learns from Black Grimace (yes that’s his name) that Ghost and Kanan hit the stash house and killed one of the crew. After his ordeal in Chicago this was the last thing he thought he would have to be worried about.

At that exact moment Tommy gets a call from Ghost and he wants answers ASAP. Ghost doesn’t tell him much details just that something happened with his nephew and where to meet them. Tommy wastes no time and heads over to Ghost and Riq’s location to find out what happened to his nephew. As soon as he hops out the truck and ask’s Riq if he was okay? Riq immediately runs to his Uncle and gives him a hug.

That was a much better hug than the one he gave his own father last episode after he saved his damn life.

Riq gets in the car while his father and uncle chop it up and Ghost brings Tommy up to speed about what’s going on. Ghost reveals to Tommy that Kanan is still alive and that him and Jukebox were the ones behind Riq’s kidnapping. Tommy also had something to reveal as well and that was the fact that Tasha already received a ransom request that she failed to reveal to Ghost. Ghost breaks down exactly what happened between him Kanan and Jukebox and how Kanan turned on her. Tommy was basically like all of us last  Sunday after hearing the story.

Before Tommy takes them home he has to know one thing from Riq. He asks Riq if Dre was telling the truth in regards to know anything about going on. This was Riq’s chance to redeem himself with the Power massive and guess what? He failed the test miserably by lying once again when he tells Tommy that Dre is pretty much clean on the Kanan matter.

Ghost and Riq finally make it home and are immediately greeted by Tasha whom has been worried sick about her son Riq. She immediately wants to know where they both have been all night? She wants the answer from the Riq especially and tells him not to lie to her about it either. Riq responds to his mother by raising his voice and pointing out that his mom lied to him about what happened to Shawn? Tasha was like:

Ghost reveals to Tasha that Riq was kidnapped by Kanan and that it wasn’t the first time it happened. After swallowing that tough pill, Ghost and Tasha head into the bedroom to argue .

The two go back and forth about the situation and why information was neglected to be share. Ghost takes it there by saying Tasha only had one job and she loses it. Tasha rips Ghost a new one by breaking down that not only did she have deal with his lying son, she also had scrounge up bail money and play housewife to keep Ghost stress free as instructed by Proctor. Tasha makes it perfectly clear that the only reason they are in this situation is because Ghost couldn’t keep stop messing with that fed punani.

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‘New Man’: Power Season 4, Episode 406, POWERful Moments Recap!

Ghost is a free man and he owes his life to none other than Angela Valdez who put her neck on the line for him by telling the truth. So that means everything goes back to normal now for Ghost right?

Ghost has even more trouble waiting for him on the outside in the form of Kanan and Jukebox. With Ghost being free they decide it’s time to put their original plan of holding Riq hostage for ransom back in motion. Oh and of course once they get paid they will kill both Ghost and his son for good measure.

Power Season 2, Episode 8 Recap

So lets step into tonight’s episode of Power shall we?

PHOTOS: STARZ/POWER

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‘Don’t Thank Me’: Power Season 4, Episode 405 Powerful Moments Recap!

Last weeks episode of Power was an emotional roller coaster ride and left us wondering how in the world can the Power writers top it? Well they most certainly succeeded cause tonight’s episode  ‘Don’t Thank Me’ takes this season to another level.It easily is the seasons best so far!

Hit the gallery below to get into this weeks Power recap!

PHOTO: STARZ

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‘We’re In This Together’: Power Season 4, Episode 403 POWERful Moments Recap!

Team James St. Patrick managed to score a minor victory in court thanks to Proctor’s skills and having the D.N.A evidence thrown out. BUT Ghost, his family and anyone closely associated with him are not out the woods yet. Ghost has a new enemy to worry about in Tony Teresi, his son is out running the streets with his old nemesis Kanan and the prosecution is still hungry to get him the needle.

Now it’s time to step into this week’s Power recap!

PHOTOS: STARZ

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On The Gram: Hilarious Meme Reactions To Episode 402 Power!

Tonight’s episode of Power was a super emotional one as Ghost is one of the biggest battles of his life. Not only is he facing life in prison but also looking at death if his super lawyer Proctor doesn’t come through. He also has to worry about his bad ass son too who is currently running the streets with his worse enemy.

ALSO READ: ‘Things Are Going To Get Worse’: Power Season 4, Episode 402 POWERful Moments Recap!

We also so his boy Tommy rebound with Tasha’s homie Lakeisha whom we thought was dead last season. We found out last week he “saved” her from the evil Milan by hiding her. Tonight he introduced her to winter storm Tommy and she loved every minute of it. As you can imagine the internet had some interesting reactions to tonight’s episode, hit the gallery below to see the best reactions.

PHOTO: Instagram

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Omari Hardwick, Loretta Devine and more Star In ‘Chapter & Verse’, Out Now!

After serving eight years in prison, reformed gang leader “S. Lance Ingram” (Daniel Beaty) re-enters society and struggles to adapt to a changed Harlem. Living under the tough supervision of a parole officer in a halfway house, he is unable to find a job that will let him use the technological skills he gained in prison. Lance is forced to take a job delivering for a food pantry where he befriends “Ms. Maddy” (Loretta Devine), a strong and spirited grandmother, and assumes responsibility for her 15-year- old grandson “Ty,” a promising student who is pulled into a dangerous street gang. When gang members decide to punish him for disobeying the “law of the streets,” Lance risks sacrificing his “second chance” at freedom so that Ty can have a “first chance” at a better life.

With Chapter & Verse, director Jamal Joseph, a filmmaker, acclaimed author, film professor, community leader, activist and a Black Panther who spent time in prison as a result of his involvement in the organization, reflects upon what it means to forge your own destiny in an outwardly harsh society.

Starring: Daniel Beaty, Loretta Devine (NBC’s The Carmichael Show), Omari Hardwick (STARZ POWER), Selenis Levya (NETFLIX Orange Is The New Black).

Directed by: Jamal Joseph

Written by: Jamal Joseph and Daniel Beaty

The film has opened in New York today. Opens in LA and additional cities on February 10, 2017.

Check out the trailer below:

[ione_embed src=https://player.vimeo.com/video/168403413 service=vimeo width=640 height=272 type=iframe]

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Ghost Will Be Fighting For His Freedom In Newly Released Set Photos From Season 4 of Power!

naturi-naughton-as-tasha-st-patrick-first-look1

Looks like Ghost will be fighting for his freedom as well as trying to keep his family safe based on newly released set photos from season 4 of Power!

Season 3 set a record for viewership across all platforms, making it the most-watched show on Starz with a whopping 7.1 million people tuning in every Sunday and being ranked #1 among all weekend cable programs for African Americans. We were left with the bombshell of Ghost being arrested by his ex-girlfriend Assistant U.S.Attorney Angela Valdes for the death of Agent Greg Knox a crime he damn sure didn’t commit.

angela-arrests-ghost-power-season-3-episode-310

Power season 4 looks to pick up where season 3 left off with Ghost in court battling it out with the feds and old foes while picking up new allies along the way. His biggest challenge remains the inner struggle with becoming the man he wants to be and the man he truly is.

omari-hardwick-as-james-ghost-st-patrick-first-look

All we have to say is can Summer 2017 hurry up and get here already! Season 4 is currently still in production be sure to stay tuned to the SFPL for more updates regarding Power!

Stay Fly!

PHOTO: STARZ | SOURCE: STARZ

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“In My Best Interest”: POWERful Moments From Powers Season 3 Finale!

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“In My Best Interest”: POWERful Moments From Power’s Season 3 Finale!

S

eason 3 of Power is officially over, insert all the sad face emojis :-(. There were plenty of heart pounding moments as we finally learned the fate of Tommy and Ghost and how they will deal with Milan. Tonight’s season finale delivered on what was a season full of death, betrayal, lies, sex, and twists and turns.

We broke down all the key POWERful moments from the season finale. Hit the gallery below to revisit the moments that had as either shocked, shaking our heads or applauding.

PHOTO: STARZ