Filmmakers Journey of My Nappy Roots
"My Nappy Roots : A journey into Black Hairitage" is the award winning film that was the birth of my journey into my cultural roots and the Ethnic haircare industry and ultimately the resurgence of the 2nd or 3rd (now global) Natural Hair Movement. I had no idea how exploring Black hair would shape my life10 years later. Growing up I was never proud of my hair or skin, I just settled into cultural and creative expressions and never gave my "bad hair" much thought. I was just born with it and that's the way God intended. Only years later did I understand the real connection that my hair and dark skin really played on my psyche. Since I blocked the pain, It was easier to see the impact as a mother as my daughter, Brighton discovered her hair trials. The Film began as a short 5 minute exploration of the culture of Black hair by Brighton while in high school. One of Brighton's favorite teachers Ms Hill who knew that Brighton's mom was a filmmaker asked Brighton to participate in the NAACP-ACTSO mentoring program just 2 weeks before the competition. Regi pulled in her best filmschool buddy and award winning editor, Jay to help mentor the project. To Regi's and Brighton's surprise he was personally interested in the topic of Black hair as a White guy who grew up in a diverse community.
The film, My Nappy Roots journey started with my daughter and my film school buddie, Jay B. Research was NOT going to Amazon for a list of books like today. It was phone calling , looking up articles, going to the libraries, a couple of weeks at the library of congress, countless books. It was literally putting together timeline puzzle. Brighton wrote the initial 5 minute film and we mentored her for the NAACP-ACTSO competition. The initial film garnered Brighton a gold medal for the local chapter of NAACP and a trip to compete for the finals with honorable mentions.
I knew (as a filmmaker) by the second day of reserach, My Nappy ROOTS was far from complete. History was just pouring out, People were so passionate about the subject. Several education versions of the film have since been created with over 200 hours of rich history and culture span over 400 years from Africa to America. through the middle passage. Film festival awards, universities, Expos have screened and still request screenings. We look forward to making this historic document available to schools, salons and homes for an empowering experience of understanding the truth about naturally Afro curly Nappy hair. This was a premiere of the :78 minute feature version in New York City at the Director's Guild. Soft Sheen Carson and Essence threw a fabulous screening event with several celebrities , VIP party and best of all the Q&A panel was moderated by Mikki Talylor, Essence's Beauty Editor.