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‘Blindspotting’: How Daveed Diggs and Rafael Casal Made the First Buddy Comedy About Gentrification and White Privilege

‘Blindspotting’: How Daveed Diggs and Rafael Casal Made the First Buddy Comedy About Gentrification and White Privilege
Gentrification is a problem in most major American cities, but nowhere has the shift been more palpable than in Oakland, California. Limited housing stock combined with an infusion of money from Silicon Valley has changed the San Francisco Bay Area at an alarming rate, with longtime residents bemoaning the fabric of the old city falling apart. In the new film “Blindspotting,” co-writers and stars Daveed Diggs and Rafael Casal turn their stylish buddy comedy into a searing critique of income inequality, systemic racism, and rapid gentrification. Using verse interludes to heighten the film’s emotional piques, “Blindspotting” grounds its lyrical moments with a playful humor and moving sincerity.

“We hope Oakland sees itself in it, we worked really hard for that part,” Casal, a Berkeley native, told IndieWire in a recent phone interview. The movie opened there last week, and Casal said hometown audiences have been largely supportive. “The one
See full article at Indiewire »

'Blindspotting' Stars Discuss Why Oakland Is Having a "Moment" at the Movies

'Blindspotting' Stars Discuss Why Oakland Is Having a
First features are always special for their directors, but for Rafael Casal, his debut, Blindspotting, held extra resonance because it was shot in his hometown.

“The thing about the Bay Area is we don’t get a lot of movies. We’re having a little bit of a moment right now,” Casal, who co-wrote the film along with star Daveed Diggs, told The Hollywood Reporter In Studio alongside co-star Janina Gavankar.

Casal shot the film in Oakland, which is also the setting for the July film Sorry to Bother You and parts of Marvel's Black Panther.

“It became this ...
See full article at The Hollywood Reporter »

Film Review: The Tumbling Delicacy of Life in ‘Blindspotting’

Chicago – How can we understand the day-to-day factors of men and women who continued to be judged by their skin color, economic circumstances, difficult jobs or gender fluidity, if we are not any of those categories? Our art can help us, as given a great example in the new film “Blindspotting.”

Rating: 4.0/5.0

Actors Rafael Casal and Daveed Diggs wrote the film and performed the lead roles, that of two men going though different transitions in their lives. It also puts a spin on the differences in racial components for law enforcement, and socio-economic factors in the dynamics of wealth infiltration (gentrification) in Oakland, California. This is a film of the now, vibrant and alive with current trends, alive with street poetry and contemporary language. Directed by Carlos López Estrada in his major film debut, at its centerpiece is the melting pot of the American Dream, drifting and dancing through each other.
See full article at HollywoodChicago.com »

Daveed Diggs, Rafael Casal Go ‘Blindspotting’; Bleecker Street Opens ‘McQueen’ – Specialty B.O. Preview

Daveed Diggs, Rafael Casal Go ‘Blindspotting’; Bleecker Street Opens ‘McQueen’ – Specialty B.O. Preview
Summit Entertainment/Lionsgate is opening Blindspotting with Daveed Diggs and Rafael Casal in limited locations this weekend ahead of a wider roll out. Starring Daveed Diggs and Rafael Casal, who co-wrote the comedy/drama, the feature came together after a decade of planning. Blindspotting is the highest-profile narrative opening in select locations this weekend. Friday will also see the arrival of several documentaries. Bleecker Street is opening McQueen by Ian Bonhôte and Peter Ettedgui; the Alexander McQueen bio is the company’s first doc release. And Sundance Selects will roll out Far From the Tree, based on the book by Andrew Solomon, while Amazon Studios is launching Generation Wealth by Lauren Greenfield.

Blindspotting

Director: Carlos López Estrada

Writers: Rafael Casal, Daveed Diggs

Cast: Daveed Diggs, Rafael Casal, Janina Gavankar, Jasmine Chephas Jones, Ethan Embry, Tisha Campbell-Martin, Utkarsh Ambudkar, Wayne Knight

Distributor: Summit Entertainment/Lionsgate

Dramedy Blindspotting has been in the works for over a decade.
See full article at Deadline »

Eka Darville, Janina Gavankar, Italia Ricci Join North Fork TV Festival Lineup

  • Variety
Eka Darville, Janina Gavankar, Italia Ricci Join North Fork TV Festival Lineup
Eka Darville, Janina Gavankar, and Italia Ricci are heading to Greenport, N.Y. for the North Fork TV Festival this fall. They will be appearing on the festival’s Actor Panel moderated by casting director Rebecca Dealy of Chrystie Street Casting.

“We are thrilled to have Eka, Janina and Italia join Rebecca on stage for an interesting and exciting panel. We look forward to a lively discussion on how actors shape their TV roles and their viewpoint on the TV industry,” said Noah Doyle, founder of the Nofotv Festival.

Darville last portrayed Malcolm in “Marvel’s Jessica Jones.” Netflix released Season 2 of the superhero series on March 8. In addition to appearing in Rafael Casal and Daveed Diggs’ “Blindspotting,” Gavankar most recently starred as Diana Thomas in Fox’s “Sleepy Hollow.” Ricci currently plays opposite Kiefer Sutherland on ABC’s “Designated Survivor.”

Dealy has cast shows including “Taken,” “Person of Interest,
See full article at Variety »

‘Blindspotting’ Review: Tale of Two Oaklands Couldn’t Be More Personal

‘Blindspotting’ Review: Tale of Two Oaklands Couldn’t Be More Personal
In the words of Blindspotting‘s co-star Rafael Casal, the film is “a comedy in a world that won’t let it be one.” Fair enough. Written by Casal (a wordsmith who cut his teeth on HBO’s Def Poetry Jam) and his real-life buddy Daveed Diggs, who won a Tony for playing both Thomas Jefferson and the Marquis de Lafayette in Broadway’s Hamilton, it’s definitely a movie that finds its humor in some hellish places.

Diggs plays Collin, an ex-con with three days to go on his probation.
See full article at Rolling Stone »

Podtalk: Co-Stars Daveed Diggs & Rafael Casal of ‘Blindspotting’

Chicago – If there are themes emerging in the 2018 film year, a couple of them are incorporated in Oakland, California, and African American identity. Like the recent “Black Panther” and “Sorry to Bother You,” the new film “Blindspotting” – written by and featuring Daveed Diggs and Rafael Casal – involve those themes.

Daveed Diggs and Rafael Casal of ‘Blindspotting

Photo credit: Summit Entertainment

But it’s also very different that the other two films. Daveed Diggs and Rafael Casal are lifelong friends from Oakland, and have experienced the city emerging from being the dismissed stepchild of the grander San Francisco to another rapidly gentrifying land grab, thanks to the expanding Silicon Valley and area housing costs.

In their co-creator story of Oakland, Diggs portrays Collin, who is coming to the end of a prison sentence and probation. Casal is Miles, his best friend and co-worker with Collin for a moving company. When Collin
See full article at HollywoodChicago.com »

‘Blindspotting’ Film Review: Ambitious Oakland Tale Suffers From Too Many Ideas

  • The Wrap
‘Blindspotting’ Film Review: Ambitious Oakland Tale Suffers From Too Many Ideas
Having too few ideas has been the downfall of many a film, but sometimes too many can be just as much of a problem. “Blindspotting,” which premiered on opening night of this year’s 2018 Sundance Film Festival, puts far more on its plate than it knows how to handle.

It’s a story about gentrification, police violence, the rules of being a white person growing up surrounded by black culture, the criminal justice system, institutionalized racism, guns in the home and the semiotics of hair, jolting with jarring artlessness between witty comedy and intense drama.

Co-stars and co-writers Daveed Diggs (“Wonder”) and Rafael Casal have a lot to say, much of it funny and/or provocative, but neither they nor first-time feature director Carlos López Estrada can figure out a way to shape all this material into a cohesive film.

Also Read: 'Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again' Film
See full article at The Wrap »

Movie Review – Blindspotting (2018)

Blindspotting, 2018.

Directed by Carlos López Estrada.

Starring Daveed Diggs, Rafael Casal, Janina Gavankar, Jasmine Cephas Jones, Ethan Embry, Tisha Campbell-Martin, Utkarsh Ambudkar, and Wayne Knight.

Synopsis:

Lifelong friends Daveed Diggs and Rafael Casal co-wrote and star in this timely and wildly entertaining story about the intersection of race and class, set against the backdrop of a rapidly gentrifying Oakland.

There are more incredibly defined layers to the characters and thematic takeaways in Blindspotting than the human mind can process in a single viewing. Equally impressive is how skilled despite being unfamiliar the people behind the camera are at making movies; director Carlos López Estrada is a shorts veteran injecting modern-day hip-hop sensibilities and artistic style to an already captivating script from lifelong friends Daveed Diggs and Rafael Casal, which they have been writing for 10 years now. In many ways, it’s terrifying that they didn’t have to change much
See full article at Flickeringmyth »

This 1 Detail From Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's Wedding Is Guaranteed to Make You Giggle

  • Popsugar
This 1 Detail From Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's Wedding Is Guaranteed to Make You Giggle
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle tied the knot in a beautiful ceremony on May 19, before changing into gorgeous black-tie outfits and partying the night away with 200 guests. Between the giggling guests, the emotional speeches, and a very special performance given by Elton John, it sounds like the reception was one hell of a party, and every little detail was planned to perfection - down to the theme of the wedding tables.

According to Janina Gavankar, who is a close friend to Meghan, each table was named for a food that is pronounced differently on either side of the Atlantic. "Potato, potato, tomato, tomato, oregano, oregano," she told Town & Country. "It was so sweet. There were so many nods to the beautiful mashup of two cultures."

Of course, it wasn't the only way Meghan made sure to bring a little bit of her American background into her big day. In addition to wearing a modern,
See full article at Popsugar »

The Royal Wedding Was a Serious Affair - Until This Happened and Guests Started Giggling

  • Popsugar
The Royal Wedding Was a Serious Affair - Until This Happened and Guests Started Giggling
The royal wedding was essentially an international phenomenon, with crowds of thousands swarming the streets to catch a glimpse of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's big day and more than 47 million viewers tuning in to watch on TV. But for wedding guest actress Janina Gavankar, their nuptials were a much more intimate experience. She attended simply to see an actual wedding, "between two people, who are real people that fell in love."

Janina, who recently made headlines after revealing that no designers offered to dress her for the ceremony, shared behind-the-scenes details of the wedding and reception with Town & Country on May 24. She's a dear friend of Meghan's, who decided not to disclose her wedding invitation ahead of time.

"It wasn't a priority for me to have my publicist announce I was going," Janina said. "My priority will always be my friend. I'm not there for you, I'm there for her.
See full article at Popsugar »

Meghan Markle's Friend Janina Gavankar Spills Royal Wedding Details

Meghan Markle's Friend Janina Gavankar Spills Royal Wedding Details
Meghan Markle's longtime friend Janina Gavankar shared some new royal wedding details—and we, like the Depeche Mode song once said, just can't get enough! In a new interview with Town & Country, the 37-year-old spilled some deets on Meghan and Prince Harry's nuptials, like why it some of the 600 lucky guests at St George's Chapel kept having giggle fits during the ceremony. Turns out that the laughter was due to the cheers from the 1,200 members of the public, who were selected to be outside Windsor Castle for the event for being outstanding members of their community. "One thing that made many of us giggle was that we could hear the wonderful people outside. When the...
See full article at E! Online »

Meghan Markle's Bridesmaids and Page Boys ~Almost~ Stole the Show as She Walked Down the Aisle

She's officially the Duchess of Sussex! Meghan Markle and Prince Harry tied the knot on May 18 at St George's Chapel in Windsor — and the whole world is still buzzing about the beautiful nuptials. Yet despite already walking down the aisle, people are still wondering: Who were the bridesmaids at the royal wedding? As it turns out, the self-procaimed "feminist" made her way to her future hubby with a gaggle of cute kiddos — including Prince George and Princess Charlotte! (Photo Credit: Getty Images) The couple upheld royal tradition and filled their bridal party with tiny tots. In addition to Prince William and Kate Middleton's children, three-year-old Miss Florence van Cutsem, who is Prince Harry's goddaughter and the daughter of Mrs. Alice van Cutsem and Major Nicholas van Cutsem, was in attendance. The other bridesmaids included Harry's other goddaughter, two-year-old Miss Zalie Warren, who's the daughter of Mrs. Zoe Warren and Mr.
See full article at Life and Style »

Who’s on the Royal Wedding Guest List?

  • Variety
Who’s on the Royal Wedding Guest List?
With the royal wedding just a few hours away, rumors are flying all over the internet about those who were possibly invited to the nuptials. Below is a list of the confirmed guests with invites to Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s special day:

Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip

This one should be a no brainer; what kind of royal wedding would it be without Her Majesty? The rest of the royal family will all be arriving at St. George’s Chapel, as early as 11:20 Am London time.

George Clooney and Amal Clooney

Hard confirmation on this one isn’t exactly in the clear, but Markle’s hairdresser, Miguel Perez, confirmed that he would be doing Amal’s hair for the wedding. One can only assume that her husband George will be in tow on May 19.

3 Spice Girls (kinda)

Despite Mel B letting slip a few months back
See full article at Variety »

Exclusive Interview – Composer Gordy Haab talks scoring Battlefront II, Iden’s Theme, and love for Star Wars

Red Stewart chats with composer Gordy Haab

Gordy Haab is an American composer that has been working in the film, television, and video game industry since the early-2000s. Last year, he had the honor of scoring the EA’s published game Star Wars: Battlefront II. Flickering Myth had the chance to speak with him, and I in turn had the privilege to conduct it.

In an interview with the La Times, you described the Original Trilogy’s music as having a distinct sound from the Prequel Trilogy’s, the Ot being more thematic and characters having their own leitmotifs versus the Pt frequently jumping around between the different sections of the orchestra. Assuming you have seen The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi, I was wondering how you would describe the sequel trilogy’s music.

Of course I’ve seen them both multiple times! There are many similarities in
See full article at Flickeringmyth »

Trailer Binge: ‘Blindspotting’, ‘Anon’, ‘Safe’, ‘Life of the Party’ & ‘Detroiters’

Welcome to Trailer Binge, a recurring feature where we get a chance to catch up on some of the recent trailer releases in the past week. Whether it be indie releases, or recent movie and TV trailers that may have otherwise slipped through the cracks, Trailer Binge allows us to catch up on the seemingly constant onslaught of new new content being released each week.

In this edition of Trailer Binge, we take a look at trailers for Sundance darling ‘Blindspotting‘, the Sci-fi film ‘Anon‘ and a new Michael C. Hall series ‘Safe‘. Plus, we have new trailers for the new Melissa McCarthy comedy ‘Life of the Party‘ and ‘Detroiters‘ Season 2. Let the binge begin!

‘Blindspotting’ Trailer

Blindspotting will debut in select cities July 20th, and also stars Daveed Diggs, Rafael Casal, Janina Gavankar, Jasmine Cephas Jones, Ethan Embry, Tisha Campbell-Martin, Utkarsh Ambudkar, and Wayne Knight.

Collin (Daveed Diggs) must
See full article at Age of the Nerd »

First Trailer for ‘Blindspotting’ Finds Daveed Diggs Trying to Survive in Oakland

Going into Sundance Film Festival this year, we knew there was bound to be a handful of movies depicting police brutality and the state of race relations in America. We were greeted on opening night with Blindspotting, a film that took a different angle on these issues. Carlos López Estrada’s debut feature mixes comedy, hip-hop, and intense drama for a scattershot, but no less engaging experience. Ahead of a summer release, the first trailer has now arrived.

Dan Schindel said in his review, “Blindspotting is a mess that is likely to lessen in your mind as soon as it’s over, even if you may be utterly absorbed in it in the moment (which I often was). A lot of it is provocation which belies a lack of a real message, or story turns that feel unearned even in the heightened context the movie establishes. But there is undeniable craft here,
See full article at The Film Stage »

First trailer for Blindspotting starring Daveed Diggs and Rafael Casal

Lionsgate has debuted the first trailer for the upcoming comedy drama Blindspotting. Directed by Carlos Lopez Estrada, the film is written by and also stars Rafael Casal and Daveed Diggs alongside Janina Gavankar, Jasmine Cephas Jones, Ethan Embry, Tisha Campbell-Martin, Utkarsh Ambudkar, and Wayne Knight; watch it here…

See Also: Read our ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ review of Blindspotting here

See Also: SXSW Exclusive Interview – Carlos López Estrada, Daveed Diggs and Rafael Casal discuss Blindspotting

Collin (Daveed Diggs) must make it through his final three days of probation for a chance at a new beginning. He and his troublemaking childhood best friend, Miles (Rafael Casal), work as movers, and when Collin witnesses a police shooting, the two men’s friendship is tested as they grapple with identity and their changed realities in the rapidly-gentrifying neighborhood they grew up in.

Longtime friends and collaborators, Daveed Diggs and Rafael Casal co-wrote and star in this timely
See full article at Flickeringmyth »

First Trailer for Sundance Breakout 'Blindspotting' with Daveed Diggs

"Don't be who you isn't!" Lionsgate has launched a trailer for the indie buddy comedy Blindspotting, which first premiered at the Sundance Film Festival this year to quite a bit of acclaim. Longtime friends and collaborators, Daveed Diggs and Rafael Casal, co-wrote and star in this timely and wildly entertaining story about friendship and the intersection of race and class set against the backdrop of Oakland. Described as "a provocative hometown love letter that glistens with humanity," Diggs stars as a guy trying to finish his last three days of probation without any problems, but his friend keeps getting him into trouble. The film's cast includes Janina Gavankar, Jasmine Cephas Jones, Ethan Embry, Tisha Campbell-Martin, Utkarsh Ambudkar, and Wayne Knight. This was one of my favorites at this year's Sundance, I highly recommend it, a film that shines a mirror on American society, and still makes you laugh at the same time.
See full article at FirstShowing.net »

Blindspotting Review [SXSW 2018]

Carlos López Estrada’s Blindspotting is the kind of cultural phenomenon that can render an audience silent, dead serious and crippled by oft-ignored realities mere seconds after striking wide-sweeping hysterics. Always reshaping, never shying from harsh realities. I lost my breath laughing, stared speechless at bleeding-raw depictions of societal fears and felt paralyzed (even ashamed) more than once – that is the power of Blindspotting. You sit down, you shut up and you listen.

Rafael Casal and Daveed Diggs spent nine years pitching and developing a screenplay that grew dishearteningly more relevant with each passing day. Almost a decade’s worth of time for correction, yet written dialogue has only sharpened its piercing sting. Casal and Diggs tumble down an incendiary rabbit hole of helplessness and unease that’s still effortlessly, invincibly “dope,” but far more vocally outraged than entertainment-driven. A sensational Ted-Talkin’ bombshell meant to obliterate comfort zones.

Estrada’s
See full article at We Got This Covered »
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