Issa Rae has been named ambassador of the American Black Film Festival (ABFF) 2022 and is gifting attendees with an exclusive premiere of her new, highly-anticipated series, Rap Sh*t, to close out the festival on June 18.
“I’m honored to be this year’s Festival Ambassador. ABFF was the first major festival to showcase my work and they continue to elevate Black creatives from the ground level. It’s also fun as hell,” Rae expressed in an exclusive statement to Variety.
ABFF is regarded as a prime space for Black content creators and will return to Miami Beach in person from June 15–19. Rae will additionally join ABFF founders, Jeff and Nicole Friday for welcome remarks during the opening night.
“It has been amazing to watch Issa shatter ceilings with her incredible sensibility to storytelling and her astounding achievements in the industry,” shared Nicole Friday. “We have been admirers of her work from the early days and salute her for remaining authentic and never forgetting the importance of elevating the next generation of emerging artists.”
“Rap Sh*t,” which is set in and was shot on location in Miami, was announced just as Rae’s hit series, Insecure, ended after five seasons. The series will follow two estranged high school friends (comedian Aida Osman and rapper KaMillion) from South Florida who reunite to form a rap group. City Girls will serve as co-executive producers of the series, with Rae as head writer, and Insecure‘s Syreeta Singleton as showrunner. Devonté Hynes, the composer behind the Queen & Slim score, will serve in the same role for Rap Sh*t.
The entertainment mogul joins the stacked list of previous ABFF ambassadors including Halle Berry, Mary J. Blige, Idris Elba, Tracee Ellis Ross, Regina Hall, Morris Chestnut, Omari Hardwick, Common, Taraji P. Henson, and more. ABFF will continue its run of virtual events from June 20–30, following the in-person portion of the festival, on ABFF PLAY.