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Brazilians Are Occupying White Spaces During 'Black Panther' Reign

The diaspora is not playing. 

Many have debated the claim that Black Panther is making any waves for its black audience, whether politically or socially. The argument is that a single film with a crew 90 percent black won’t change any conditions or necessarily mobilize a people. Many say the representation is still limited, which is true. Nevertheless, we would be remiss to dismiss the power behind strong and dignified black imagery.

Take Brazil for instance, where a myriad of protests have risen, proving that the movie is no ground for complacency. It lends, instead, to a global resurgence of black unity. The film is not an embodiment of general change, but of change we can start with.

After the release of the reasonably decorated film, black Brazilians have assembled, traveling hours outside of favelas or working-class neighborhoods to protest their exclusion from "elite" venues and defy their cloak of invisibility through participation in the rolezinho pretoi or “black stroll.”

On Monday (Feb. 19), the Coletivo Preto (Black Collective) and Grupo Emú began occupying predominately white spaces – such as malls where the upper-class visit – to continue their escape from the segregation and rampant impoverishment that surrounds them, though never stated overtly.

The group started at Shopping Leblon, one of Rio de Janeiro’s most luxurious malls. They simply came together and decided to see the movie — all black, all together. As a people, their presence posed a threat to the “safety” of shoppers and fellow movie-goers. The group dressed in traditional African garb, accompanied by accessories such as kofias, headwraps and the oft-threatening afro.

In addition to presence, the protests call for representation in media. A national cinema agency, Ancine found that only seven percent of professionals in the field of entertainment are black when the majority of Brazilians have African ancestry, The Intercept reports.

The protest is much larger than a response to Black Panther’s representation. It also stands as a response to the attempts to stop young black boys and men from visiting beaches in wealthy neighborhoods back in 2015, with earlier protests turned violent as motivators, too. The fear of the "invasion" has caused white elites and their businesses to close malls and call on law enforcement agents, who have resorted to breaking up the groups with tear gas and rubber bullets, according to The Intercept.

Organizers, however, will continue to work for their people, as no motion for civil rights has ever been easy. They’re pushing for blackness in film and elsewhere in media to become the norm.

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An Unofficial Documentary About Drake Is Currently On Streaming Services

An unauthorized documentary about the rise of musician Drake can be viewed on video distribution services such as Netflix and Amazon Prime. Drake: Rewriting the Rules initially dropped on Vimeo in Nov. 2018, and now, fans of the "God's Plan" musician will have a chance to watch it at their leisure on other platforms.

The documentary chronicles the music superstar from his days growing up in Toronto, to portraying Jimmy on the hit-teen drama Degrassi, to becoming a hip-hop star and working with musicians from Kanye West to his Young Money leader, Lil Wayne.

"Discover the untold story of how Drake rewrote the rules and rose from a child actor to become a cultural phenomenon and global musical icon," writes IMDb of the film's synopsis. "He is the king of pop and hip hop, combining many musical styles into one mainstream sound." The film runs 74 minutes long. Interviews from media figures and writers are included in the doc, which was directed and written by British filmmaker Ray King. However, no representatives from Drake's team are included.

Drake has not commented on the doc as of press time. He has been relatively quiet in the news, however, it's being reported that he is close to securing a residency of sorts at the Wynn's XS Nightclub in Las Vegas.

 

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Stream: Hulu's 'FYRE Fraud' Doc Examines The Festival That Scammed Thousands

In 2017, rumors of an exclusive festival taking place in the Bahamas took over social media. Organized by Billy McFarland and promoted by Ja Rule, the FYRE Festival was the new, cool kid on the festival block and quickly put other more seasoned festivals to shame.

But all that glitters isn't gold.

FYRE FRAUD, the new documentary streaming on Hulu, takes an intimate look at the scam that left thousands stranded on the island. Directed by Jenner Furst and Julia Willoughby Nason, the dark-comedy interviews whistleblowers, victims, and the convicted con-man himself, McFarland.

In a press release, Fraust and Nason said the goal isn't to make light of those who were scammed.

"Our aim was to set the stage for a strange journey into the moral abyss of our digital age, going beyond the meme to show an ecosystem of enablers, driven by profit and willing to look the other way, for their own gain.

"We draw on countless cultural references, on true crime tension, and on humor - but we did not intend to create a toothless comedy about the Fyre Festival. We hope this film can pierce our collective apathy and disrupt our own millennial peers, if only for an instant - to look at these stories for what they truly are, and to halt this algorithm before it devours us whole."

FYRE FRAUD is now streaming on Hulu.

 

 

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Al Bello

Dave Chappelle Isn't Sure His R. Kelly 'Chappelle Show' Skits Were Insensitive

The Surviving R. Kelly series may be over, but the fallout from it has seemingly just begun.

Director dream hampton took to Twitter during the airing of the Lifetime documentary and spoke honestly about the several celebrity men she contacted in hopes they'd speak on camera about R. Kelly and the years of sexual allegations that have shadowed him. Among them was Dave Chappelle.

The beloved comic famously made a music video entitled "Piss On You" mocking the real-life video of R. Kelly urinating on an underage girl. During the Chappelle Show heyday, he used R.Kelly's legal woes as material for years.

TMZ caught with Chappelle in West Hollywood and asked him if he regretted not being featured in hampton's series and instead he dodged the question.

"Jesus Christ, I just had dinner," Chappelle said in between taking a drag of his cigarette. "I just ate. Strop bringing that motherf**ker up."

When pressed about whether or not he thinks his old skits were insensitive, the 45-year-old said "I don't know. I'd have to watch it again."

D.L. Hughley joined Chappelle for dinner and commented on R.Kelly and the forthcoming Michael Jackson documentary, Leaving Neverland, which outlines sexual assault allegations against the late singer.

"If you can be mad at R. Kelly, you should be mad at Michael Jackson," Hughley said.

 

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