PARK CITY, UTAH—As a first-timer at the Sundance Film Festival, let me tell you—there's nothing like it. It's hard to encapsulate, but imagine Hollywood distilled into a snow globe. Picture a (cold) village on a beautiful mountainside where it's nothing to grab a drink next to the actor you idolized growing up, or be dancing at a silent disco with the producer who made your favorite film.
But with so much going on, from panels and screenings to pop-up lounges and A-list celeb spotting, Sundance can also be overwhelming. And until recently, a bit homogenous as well. Several organizations, including Ava DuVernay's distribution collective ARRAY and Charles King's production company MACRO assessed the landscape and decided to lead the charge in order to make Sundance, the largest independent film festival in the U.S., more inclusive and accessible for all. Another group was The Blackhouse Foundation, which to put it simply, is lit. During the opening weekend of the 2019 festival Blackhouse offered nonstop programming for attendees to learn from industry heavyweights, eat a hearty breakfast every morning, and turn up every night.
The mission of the Blackhouse Foundation is to expand opportunities for minority creatives by providing pathways to opportunities within media. Their efforts have not been at a loss: “When we started The Blackhouse Foundation 12 years ago, there were seven black films being showcased at Sundance; this year there were 46. Our vision is to see more multicultural content, written, directed, produced, and owned by members of the community, and we are thrilled to share The 2019 Blackhouse Portrait Studio powered by AT&T Dream in Black," said Brickson Diamond, Blackhouse Foundation Co-Founder and Chairman.
The Blackhouse Foundation exclusively partnered with Complex to share photos of the stars who pulled up to their invite-only portrait studio. Scroll for a peek at the new faces of the Sundance Film Festival.