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Richelieu Dennis of Shea Moisture Buys Essence Magazine From Time, Inc.

This power move makes the veteran publication 100 percent black-owned again.

ESSENCE magazine, the veteran publication owned by multi-platform media company Essence Communications Inc., has been acquired by Essence Ventures LLC, an independent, black-owned company founded by Shea Moisture's Richelieu Dennis.


The publication has been on the hunt for a buyer since its previous owner, Time Inc, did not make Essence magazine a part of it's sale to the Meredith Corp. in November 2017, says The Root.

According to a press release, ESSENCE President Michelle Ebanks will continue at the helm of the company and will also join its board of directors. The all black female executive team at ESSENCE will have an equity stake in the business.

"This acquisition of ESSENCE represents the beginning of an exciting transformation of our iconic brand as it evolves to serve the needs and interests of multigenerational Black women around the world in an even more elevated and comprehensive way across print, digital, e-commerce and experiential platforms," Ebanks says. "In addition, it represents a critical recognition, centering and elevation of the Black women running the business from solely a leadership position to a co-ownership position."

Through this power move made by the Liberian-American entrepreneur, ESSENCE will focus on expanding its digital businesses via distribution partnerships, compelling original content, and targeting client-first strategies. The brand also plans to expand its international growth.

"We remain committed to leveraging our resources to provide opportunities for other culturally-rooted entrepreneurs and businesses that further our culture and create economic opportunities for our communities," Dennis says. "Our focus here will be on ensuring that Essence reaches its full potential via heightened capabilities, technology, products and touch points that super-serve the interests of Black women locally and globally. We look forward to helping generate new opportunities that create more value across the ESSENCE portfolio with unmatched content, commerce and international access for the millions of women it serves, as well as exceptional value for our advertising partners and content creators."

Congratulations are in order, and the reactions on social media are nothing less of that.


Veteran South African Journalist Karima Brown Has Died

Tributes have been pouring in for journalist, political commentator and activist, Karima Brown, who has recently passed away from COVID-19.

Veteran South African journalist, political commentator and activist, Karima Brown has passed away. Brown had previously been admitted to hospital after contracting COVID-19 and was undergoing treatment over the past couple of weeks. Unfortunately, she lost her battle with the disease earlier this morning. Tributes have been pouring in from media colleagues, friends, politicians and ordinary South Africans since news of Brown's death emerged.

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Watch Davido Perform 'Assurance' & 'Jowo' On Jimmy Kimmel Live

The Nigerian superstar performed for the late night American TV show.

Davido stopped by Jimmy Kimmel Live last night to give viewers a lively performance.

Backed by a full band, the Nigerian superstar kicked things off by playing A Good Time single "Assurance," which will reportedly be featured in the Coming 2 America soundtrack. After a quick interlude and set change—a king's throne appeared onstage—Davido and his band went into a medley of "Jowo," his A Better Time single.

Davido's been busy this year as he recently shared the music video for A Better Time's "The Best" alongside Mayorkun, was featured in the remix of Focalistic's "Ke Star," and collaborated with Teni on "For You."

Watch Davido's Jimmy Kimmel live performance of "Assurance" and "Jowo (Medley) below.

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Still taken from 'Walking With Shadows film trailer'

Opinion: Nollywood & the Imminent Second Coming of Queer Cinema

An exploration of queer representation and misrepresentation in Nollywood, jaded stereotypes and what the future of queer cinema in Nollywood could look like.

In a scene from Daniel Orhiari's 2018 psychological thriller Sylvia, Richard (Chris Attoh) and Obaro (Udoka Oyeka) are friends casually catching up while drinking at a bar. When Richard tells him that he's in love with a woman he's just met and intends to marry her, Obaro is relieved and chuckles. ''I was beginning to wonder, you know, if you were gay or something,'' he says. While Richard looks incredulous and rejects the notion, the scene devolves into both a commentary and cautionary tale about married gay men in Lagos sleeping with their houseboys, reinforcing the idea that homosexuality is synonymous with paedophilia.

The homophobia in the scene becomes truly apparent when the bartender, having heard their conversation, slips his phone number towards Obaro after Richard leaves. Although Obaro had told his friend he has nothing against gay people, he shows disdain towards the bartender and flees the bar. Queer representation may be non-existent in Nollywood, but pockets of homophobia like this have showed up in the works of overzealous filmmakers, as shown in Ramsey Nouah's Living in Bondage: Breaking Free (2019) where the male protagonist was assumed to be gay after he indicated interest in a woman.

Nollywood is a microcosm of the larger virulently homophobic Nigerian society, but queer cinema had somewhat thrived around the early 2000's before flatlining into oblivion. This era followed the home video boom that began in the '90s, and was marked by slightly changing attitudes–or curiosity–about sex and sexuality. Soft pornography was consumed in the form of magazines (Hints) and other variants, glossy booklets with hardcore images were openly sold in shops, depicting women engaging in sexual acts with men or with themselves, and video porn was widely available in public spaces.

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ProVerb’s Memoir Is A Huge Slap In The Face To South African Hip-Hop

In his memoir, one of South Africa's revered lyricists ProVerb and his co-author compromise his rich story with trite motivational talk.