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Exclusive: Omar Epps, Mekhi Phifer, Emayatzy Corinealdi, Keri Hilson Set For 'Mooz-Lum' Director Qasim Basir's 'Destined'

by Tambay A. Obenson
November 13, 2012 9:38 PM
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Omar Epps, Mekhi Phifer

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Omar Epps, Mekhi Phifer

  • Omar Epps, Mekhi Phifer

It was almost exactly 1 year ago, when we announced that Qasim Basir (on the heels of the home video release of his feature film directorial debut Mooz-Lum) had officially begun prepping his next film - a drama titled simply Destined.

Since then, little has been publicly available about the project, other than a synopsis and early poster art, which were shared on the film's Facebook page last year, with the tagline, "One man. Two stories. One choice that changes everything."

Skip ahead a year later to today, as I've learned from both Qasim and Tommy Oliver (the project's producer) that the film has been filling its cast, and is set to begin production at the end of December in Atlanta, with Qasim directing from his own script, Oliver producing, and Hill Harper executive producing through their new production company, Confluential Films.

I'm told that Omar Epps, Mekhi Phifer, Emayatzy Corinealdi, Keri Hilson and Michael Rainey Jr are all currently attached to star in the film, with a few more actors circling, and who will be announced later.

In Destined, a pivotal moment in 13-year-old Rasheed’s life splits off into two possible outcomes: in one, he becomes an up-and-coming architect being used by cynical real estate developers to gentrify and destroy his old neighborhood, and in the other he becomes a powerful drug lord who rules his surroundings but may regret what he’s built.

Intrigued? I am; the parrallel worlds/lives angle is attractive and I'm looking forward to seeing how Qasim builds this universe on screen.

By the way,  producer Tommy Oliver also produced Alrick Brown's Kinyarwanda fand I should note is a filmmaker in his own right. We've profiled his upcoming feature film diretorial debut titled 1982 - a project we first alerted you to in May, which stars Hill Harper, Ruby DeeElise NealBokeem Woodbine and others.

Another feature film by and about black people to look out for in 2013.

A Facebook page has been created for Destined, which you can "like" HERE; and there's a Twitter account for it as well, which you can follow HERE.

You'll know more when we know more, so stay tuned.

Glad to see Qasim back behind the camera again.

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  • Reinaldo | November 17, 2012 10:33 PMReply

    Just a note. Mooz-Lum was the opening night film of the African Diaspora International Film Festival in Paris in September this year -FIFDA in French. The filmmaker attended the event.

  • urbanauteur | November 14, 2012 4:17 PMReply

    Wow script structure sounds promising;-)....GODFATHER 2 meets( polish auteur krzysztof kieslowski's) BLIND CHANCE... i feelin the premise;-)

  • ALM | November 14, 2012 1:52 PMReply

    Yes! My first crush Omar Epps on the big screen again. :)

  • Troy | November 14, 2012 1:06 AMReply

    For me it comes down to execution. I couldn't stay awake through moozlum. I hope this is exciting and thoroughly entertaining. Moral dilemmas should for the action to ante up not be the sole focus. I want to see the impact a decision has rather than see a decision drawn out over several scenes.

  • NO BRAINER | November 14, 2012 3:05 AM

    Amen, TROY.

  • Monique A. Williams | November 14, 2012 12:28 AMReply

    Intrigued? Yes! Omar Epps and Mekhi Phifer? Yay!

  • sandra | November 13, 2012 10:48 PMReply

    Thoroughly enjoyed Mooz-Lum. Excited to see what's next for Qasim. Intrigued? Yes!

  • NO BRAINER | November 13, 2012 10:27 PMReply

    "Intrigued?" Tambay asks. "NO," I reply. It takes more than parallel lives to make me intrigued. But that's just me. I just hope Destined is a much better film than painfully amateur, unimaginative and didactic Mooz-Lum.

  • LC | November 13, 2012 10:11 PMReply

    Thanks for the update on Qasim! It would be nice if we could get debriefs on these filmmakers. We follow their films through the long journeys of fundraising, production and distribution, it would be nice and educational to get some insight and final thoughts on his experience such as did the film make a profit for him - why or why not, what are some of the things he learned about the business through his multi-year experience with Mooz-lum, what will he do differently now, what is different about his career now, what are any production insight has be gained (cameras, etc.). In general and as a filmmaker, it'd be nice to get some closure on these projects especially when the filmmakers are transitioning to the next project -- it's the one thing I think successful filmmakers don't do -- give us real insight into certain exclusive parts of the process after the "that's a wrap". My two cents!

  • nsite | November 15, 2012 9:41 AM

    Yeap. Truth & transparency is sorely lacking because Black folks beat up on their filmmakers too often. This site is also a bit too pretentious in choosing its darlings. Too few.

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