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You Need To Watch This Breathtaking Film Exploring Black Magic In Motion

Nigerian-British filmmaker Jenn Nkiru's "Rebirth Is Necessary" is required viewing.

This film directed by Nigerian-British filmmaker Jenn Nkiru just won the PRIX CANAL+ award at this year's Clermont Film Festival and after watching it, you'll understand why.

Rebirth Is Necessary is not just a film—it's accessible high art. It was included in Nowness' Black Star series in 2017, which showed rising directors their version of Afrofuturism on screen.

Nkiru folded ethereal portraits with striking archival footage to explore the black experience.


"I was thinking about so much while making Rebirth Is Necessary—the summation of my loaded feelings and questions over the last few years. I was thinking about black people, the black experience—which is my constant—and the idea of black universality," she says to Nowness. "Creating this piece felt like therapy. It's where I got to reconcile my worlds—the material and the spiritual, the human and divine. This film is jazz; black magic in motion. I hope it can be a source of inspiration, affirmation and healing to others as it has been to me, especially the black diaspora."

This film indeed made our Friday and shows us that Nkiru is one to watch this year.

Watch Rebirth Is Necessary below.

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Photo by Karwai Tang/WireImage via Getty.

Michaela Coel Joins the 'Black Panther' Sequel Cast

The upcoming film, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, is shaping up.

The sequel to the Oscar-winning Black Panther is only due to debut in July of 2022, but the production is well on its way.

The latest news out of the camp is that Michaela Coel, of I May Destroy You and Chewing Gum fame, has officially joined the cast of Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. Her character details are still under wraps but according to Variety, Coel has already joined director Ryan Coogler at Atlanta's Pinewood Studios, where production started in late June.

Coel joins original cast members Danai Gurira, Letitia Wright, Daniel Kaluuya, Winston Duke, Lupita Nyong'o, Florence Kasumba, and Angela Bassett all reprising their roles. Following the tragic passing of Chadwick Boseman, Marvel reportedly chose not to recast the role of T'Challa.

Read: How Michaela Coel's 'I May Destroy You' Makes Space For Black Creators

"It's clearly very emotional without Chad," Marvel Studios chief Kevin Feige mentions. "But everyone is also very excited to bring the world of Wakanda back to the public and back to the fans. We're going to do it in a way that would make Chad proud."

Michaela Coel's highly-lauded 2020 series I May Destroy You — which she wrote, directed, produced and stared in — received four Emmy nominations.

Black Panther: Wakanda Forever is scheduled for wide release on July 8, 2022.

Meet Duro Arts, the Man Behind Your Favorite Afrobeats Album Covers

We talk to the Lagos-based digital artist about his work with Olamide, Phyno, Falz and more.

Duro Arts has found himself illustrating the cover artwork for a new wave of Nigerian musicians. Born in Lagos, Nigeria, Oluwadurotimi Bolaji Idowu started digital art in 2010, at a time where afrobeats music was still grasping its feet. Now, 11 years later, he has made covers for heavyweight hitmakers like Peruzzi, Phyno, Olamide, Zlatan, Oxlade, and Davido.

We caught up with Duro Arts on a Sunday afternoon over Zoom. He took the call from Accra, Ghana, where he's currently working. We talked about his journey as a digital artist, his portfolio, creative process, and the changes he'd like to see in the creative industry.

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Series Producer Bonga Percy Vilakazi Is Big On Telling Progressive Stories

The award-winning South African writer and producer cut his teeth in the TV industry washing and drying make-up sponges. Today, he's responsible for entertaining millions of soapie lovers on the African continent.

For someone who has accomplished a lot working behind the scenes of South Africa's television industry, very little is known about Bonga Percy Vilakazi. Well, except that he writes Pulitzer-deserving, essay-esque Instagram captions — the type whose sarcasm is likely to have anyone chuckling from start to finish.

Currently a series producer on The River, one of South Africa's most-awarded TV shows, and creative producer on the new-ish telenovela Legacy, Bonga Percy is ready to shove aside his privacy policy in the hope that someone out there will learn a thing or two from his career journey. "I've become less self-conscious about sharing my story," he explains. "I've always thought I was reachable and approachable, especially on social media, hence the reluctance to put myself out there."

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