MIAMI BEACH – June 14th at 12 pm, just in time for Pride and Caribbean American Heritage Month, the horror film “Jagged Mind,” Maisie Richardson-Sellers and Shannon Woodward star in a queer psychological thriller, directed by Kelley Kali, from 20th Digital Studio and Hulu Originals will world premiere at the American Black Film Festival in Miami Beach. The festival runs from June 14 to June 18. The film will debut exclusively on Hulu on June 15 and on Disney+ (via Star) internationally at a later date.
Kali’s goal is to be known as a director and content creator who addresses issues within often marginalized communities by using the art of filmmaking to create dialogue and action toward positive change. Reserve your passes for ABFF here, before it’s sold.
Experience the Jagged Mind trailer now on YouTube
Directed by Kelley Kali (“I’m Fine (Thanks for Asking)”), “Jagged Mind” is about a woman plagued by blackouts and strange visions that lead her to discover she’s stuck in a series of time loops, possibly related to her mysterious new girlfriend. Richardson-Sellers (“DC’s Legends of Tomorrow,” “The Originals”) stars as “Billie,” alongside Woodward (“Westworld,” “Raising Hope”) as her girlfriend “Alex”.
According to Variety.com “Kali was tapped to direct this feature based off the short film “First Date,” which was included in the first season of 20th Digital Studio’s “Bite Size Halloween.” The feature, now titled “Jagged Mind,” is written by Allyson Morgan (“Sitting”). “Jagged Mind” is part of the studio’s existing slate of horror features for Hulu, including “Grimcutty,” “Matriarch,” “Clock,” and the upcoming “Appendage” and “The Mill.” “Jagged Mind” was developed by 20th Digital Studio with David Worthen Brooks, Arbi Pedrossian, and Jenna Cavelle as executive producers. Production services were carried out by the film’s producer Daniela Ruiz through her company, Palabra Productions. Kelley Kali and Congyu E also serve as producers.”
Kali is an LA native, Howard University & USC School of Cinematic Arts Alumna, and has directed, written, and produced award-winning films in Belize, Haiti, China, and locally in the USA. Right out of Howard, Kali received the opportunity to work at National Geographic Television and Film, where she gained TV experience that led her to become the only woman selected to direct the first Creole dramatic TV series in the country of Belize, NOH MATTA WAT. She later won the Paul Robeson Award for her work. Most recently, she was selected as a recipient of the 2021 Academy Gold Fellowship for Women in directing. She was then selected to work with Ron Howard and Brian Grazer’s New Form to develop her web series, THE DISCOVERY OF DIT DODSON, which went on to compete in top-tier festivals across the nation.
Filmmaker Yanatha Desouvre
Critically acclaimed and award-winning Haitian-American Miami filmmaker (Screenwriter, Producer”) Yanatha Desouvre, (The Sweetest Girl) whose latest script, Fragmented Scars, according to the Blacklist is been compared to Oscar winners, Moonlight, If Beale Streets Could Talk.
Desouvre says, “Kali, winning the Student Academy Award (Oscar) for LALO’s HOUSE, (which starred Garcelle Beauvais) tells us that her visionary eye as a Director and Content Creator is impactful, refreshing and needed, to spark an undeniable movement in telling untold stories of marginalized communities in 2023 and beyond.” Desouvre continues, “We would be honored to collaborate with Ms. Kali on a future project.”
In 2018, Kali wrote, directed, and produced LALO’S HOUSE, which went on to win the 45th Annual Student Academy Award and was in consideration for the 91st Annual Academy Awards. Kelley also won the Directors Guild of America Student Filmmaker Award, the KCET Fine Cut Award, Shadow & Act’s “Rising Award,” the Programmers’ Award at the Oscar-qualifying Pan African Film Festival, the Jury Award at the “Diversity in Cannes Showcase” sponsored by Viola Davis and Julius Tennon’s JuVee Productions, and several others in the past few years.
Her work has been featured at the American Black Film Festival as one of the top Emerging Directors and at the prestigious Telluride Film Festival. She directed, produced, and starred in the original feature film, I’M FINE (THANKS FOR ASKING), which was an early pick for narrative competition at the 2021 SXSW Film Festival. It went on to win a Special Jury Recognition for Multi-Hyphenate Storyteller (an award they created for her). It sold to and is currently streaming on BET+ and BET Her as well as Showtime. It sold to HBO Europe and currently is theatrically released in the UK and Ireland.
Kali recently finished directing the feature film JAGGED MIND (20th Digital Studio) which will have its world premiere June 14th at ABFF 2023 before its official run begins on HULU the following day (June 15) and KEMBA, based on true events, for MPI and BET Original airing later this year.
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American Black Film Festival
The American Black Film Festival (ABFF) is an annual event dedicated to recognizing Black talent and showcasing quality film and television content by and about people of African descent. Dedicated to the belief that diverse artists deserve the same opportunities as their mainstream counterparts, ABFF founder Jeff Friday conceived the festival in 1997 as a vehicle to strengthen the Black entertainment community by fostering resource sharing, education, and artistic collaboration. Now in its 27th year, the festival has become a cornerstone of diversity in Hollywood, providing a platform for emerging Black artists – many of whom have become today’s most successful actors, producers, writers, directors, and stand-up comedians. The ABFF is a property of ABFF Ventures LLC, an entertainment company specializing in the production of live events that promote Black culture and achievement.