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Gina Prince-Bythewood & Tina Mabry on Mentorship

How to Turn Your Idol into Your Mentor into Your Collaborator Gina Prince-Bythewood (“Love and Basketball”, “Shots Fired”) and Tina Mabry (“Mississippi Damned”, “Queen Sugar”) are unstoppable forces on the rise — writing, producing, and directing for TV and film while mentoring the next generation of filmmaking talent. Gina premiered an early short film at Slamdance in 1998 (“Bowl of Pork”, starring Dave Chappell) before her breakout first feature “Love and Basketball”. The film that redefined sports films and broke new ground on how women and people of color are depicted onscreen inspired Tina Mabry to abandon her LSATs and apply for film school. Tina’s 2009 debut feature “Mississippi Damned” (starring Tessa Thompson with cinematography by Oscar nominee Bradford Young) won Gina’s admiration and respect and the two filmmakers have since become mentor/mentee, friends, colleagues, and are now collaborating on an upcoming film. Both Slamdance alums, they came to our offices to discuss their experiences navigating the industry with all its highs and lows, and offered some valuable wisdom for fellow filmmakers. Listen to their conversation in it’s entirety or read some highlights below. “I mean, making a good movie is hard. Getting a movie made is a miracle.” Tina on meeting Gina after watching “Love and Basketball” and stalking her for years: Tina: The first time we...

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