Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Taraji P. Henson Will Topline Film Based on Story of Black Women Mathematicians Who Worked for NASA During the Space Race Taraji P. Henson Will Topline Film Based on Story of Black Women Mathematicians Who Worked for NASA During the Space Race Enter The New Normal Writing Contest From Issa Rae's ColorCreative & Project Greenlight Digital Studios Enter The New Normal Writing Contest From Issa Rae's ColorCreative & Project Greenlight Digital Studios Missed It Last Night? Watch 'A Ballerina’s Tale' in Full Now Missed It Last Night? Watch 'A Ballerina’s Tale' in Full Now Ava DuVernay Wanted for Two (2!) Major Sci-Fi/Fantasy Studio Projects (UPDATE: Lupita Nyong'o May Star in One of Them) Ava DuVernay Wanted for Two (2!) Major Sci-Fi/Fantasy Studio Projects (UPDATE: Lupita Nyong'o May Star in One of Them) Tonight: Nelson George's Misty Copeland Doc - 'A Ballerina’s Tale' - Premieres on INDEPENDENT LENS Tonight: Nelson George's Misty Copeland Doc - 'A Ballerina’s Tale' - Premieres on INDEPENDENT LENS Now Streaming on Netflix: Award-Winning 'Sand Dollars' (Dominican Republic's Best Foreign Language Film Oscar Entry) Now Streaming on Netflix: Award-Winning 'Sand Dollars' (Dominican Republic's Best Foreign Language Film Oscar Entry) Jamie Foxx Will Play Little John to Taron Egerton's Robin Hood in "Progressive" Take on the Legend Jamie Foxx Will Play Little John to Taron Egerton's Robin Hood in "Progressive" Take on the Legend James Franco Will Direct Film Based on Aziah "Zola" Wells' 148-Tweet Narrative That Went Viral James Franco Will Direct Film Based on Aziah "Zola" Wells' 148-Tweet Narrative That Went Viral Regarding 'Song of the South' – The Film That Disney Doesn’t Want You to See Regarding 'Song of the South' – The Film That Disney Doesn’t Want You to See Watch the Electrifying First Trailer for Don Cheadle's 'Miles Ahead' Watch the Electrifying First Trailer for Don Cheadle's 'Miles Ahead' Madonna's 'Blonde Ambition' Dancers Tell Their Own Stories in New Documentary 'Strike a Pose' Madonna's 'Blonde Ambition' Dancers Tell Their Own Stories in New Documentary 'Strike a Pose' Watch Episode 1 of PBS' New Civil War-Set Drama Series 'Mercy Street' + On-Set Visit Watch Episode 1 of PBS' New Civil War-Set Drama Series 'Mercy Street' + On-Set Visit Watch: OWN Previews New Primetime Series 'It's Not You, It's Men' (Tyrese Gibson & Rev Run Host) Watch: OWN Previews New Primetime Series 'It's Not You, It's Men' (Tyrese Gibson & Rev Run Host) LeToya Luckett, Wendy Raquel Robinson, Andra Fuller Star in New TV One Comedy Series 'Here We Go Again' LeToya Luckett, Wendy Raquel Robinson, Andra Fuller Star in New TV One Comedy Series 'Here We Go Again' TV One Aims to Change the Reality Genre with New Series, 'The Next 15' TV One Aims to Change the Reality Genre with New Series, 'The Next 15' Carolina Panthers QB Cam Newton Is Heading to TV Carolina Panthers QB Cam Newton Is Heading to TV Why Was Janet Hubert (Aunt Viv) Really Replaced on 'Fresh Prince of Bel-Air'? Why Was Janet Hubert (Aunt Viv) Really Replaced on 'Fresh Prince of Bel-Air'? Aaron McGruder Finally Explains Why He Left 'The Boondocks' Aaron McGruder Finally Explains Why He Left 'The Boondocks' Netflix Explains Why It Doesn't Always Have That Film Or TV Show You Really Want To See (Video) Netflix Explains Why It Doesn't Always Have That Film Or TV Show You Really Want To See (Video) Tichina Arnold Says She Talked To Martin Lawrence About Doing A 'Martin' Movie... Tichina Arnold Says She Talked To Martin Lawrence About Doing A 'Martin' Movie...

20th Anniversary Screening Of 'Just Another Girl On The I.R.T.' + Panel Discussion w/ Leslie Harris (NYC)

Photo of Tambay A. Obenson By Tambay A. Obenson | Shadow and Act January 8, 2013 at 2:56PM

Leslie Harris came along during what I'd call the golden 90s - when there was promise of a "revival" or a new wave in black cinema; one that seemed to flutter, wasn't sustained, and never fully actualized. 
9
IRT

Leslie Harris came along during what I'd call the golden 90s - when there was promise of a "revival" or a new wave in black cinema; one that seemed to flutter, wasn't sustained, and never fully actualized. 

Her debut feature (her only feature film that I'm aware of) Just Another Girl On The I.R.T., is a coming-of-age story about an African American teenage girl (Chantel) from a working-class family in Brooklyn, with dreams of going to college, and becoming a doctor. Chantel is a smart student, despite all the challenges she faces - the responsibility of taking care of her brothers, working a part-time job at a local grocery store, all while also going to school full-time. However, her dreams are challenged when she becomes pregnant.

The film was made with $100,000 in 1992, played at the 1993 Sundance Film Festival (where it won a Special Jury Prize), Toronto Film Festival, Tokyo Film Festival and others, and was picked up for distribution by the then Weinstein brothers-run Miramax, who released the film in theatres in March 1993, where it grossed an impressive $479,000 (or about $735,000 in today's dollars).

The film was mostly well-received by critics. I haven't watched it in very long time - many years ago; I do remember thinking it to be well-intentioned, topical and energetic, but uneven in its staging and performances, and heavy-handed in delivering its message. 

But for a film of its budget at the time (pre- the digitial cinema explosion that would come about a decade later), it did its job. 

I'll have to re-watch and re-visit it on this blog in the near future. My perspective on it might be different.

But those of you in NYC should know that, this Thursday, January 10th, at 7pm, there will be a 20th Anniversary screening of Just Another Girl on the I.R.T. at 92YTribeca, which will be followed by a panel discussion with director Leslie Harris, star of the film Ariyan Johnson, and writer Nelson George moderated by Uptown Magazine’s Angela Bronner Helm.

Tickets are $12 general admission, or $8 for 92YTribeca Film Club Members.

If Leslie Harris made another feature film, we missed it. After Just Another Girl on the I.R.T., she directed a short film titled Bessie Coleman: A Dream to Fly, a year later, in 1993. 

I do recall receiving an email in mid-2010, informing me that Harris was casting for her second feature, titled I Love Cinema, which was described as a "sexy satirical comedy."

The casting notice doesn't contained the following description:

I LOVE CINEMA subtitled OR HOW A WOMAN SURVIVES IN A ‘SO-CALLED’ POST-RACIAL WORLD, is a satirical comedy that is sexy, fun and political. I LOVE CINEMA uses humor, irony and pathos to expose some of the absurd and outrageous attitudes that exist in on today’s college campuses in a so-called post-racial world.

I performed a Google search for it jut before posting this item, and discovered that she actually tried to raise funds for it via Kickstarter last October (2012). We certainly didn't know about it, because I'm sure that if I received notice of this, it would've been posted here.

Harris wasn't successful in raising the $32,000 her campaign was seeking. 

I did also find a Facebook page for the project, but not much to update you on since the Kickstarter campaign ended.

But with renewed interest in I.R.T., on its 20th anniversary, maybe she could use that to drum up support for I Love Cinema

I won't be able to make this Thursday night's event; although I hope to have someone there repping S&A with questions, like, what's the status of I Love Cinema?

To learn more about the event, as well as purchase tickets for it, click HERE.

Here's its trailer:


Shadow & ActNewsletter