Red Tails NYC Junket : Inspiring Young Black America

I recently attended a press junket for George Lucas' latest film "Red Tails", a movie inspired by the first all-African American aerial combat unit, the Tuskegee Airmen.

Red Tails Movie

During the junket I meet with and interviewed the actors including Nate Parker, David Oyelowo, Ne-Yo, Elijah Kelly, Cuba Gooding Jr. and Terrence Howard. I was also able to interview Dr. Roscoe Brown, one of the original Tuskegee Airman, Director Anthony Hemingway and Producers Rick McCallum and Charles Floyd Johnson.

During the interviews the panel shared that the original movie idea changed from non fiction to fiction to show the depth of the movie. Scene of the pilots flying to Africa, their home coming, etc all were refocused to show the combat of the airmen since that's how they earned their name and reputation.

While the movie does highlights the civil rights issue, it's the heroism of the men that everyone hopes will appeal to the global audiences. The Tuskegee Airmen broke through color barriers by what they DID not just who they were. The focus of the movie is to educate a new generation.

When asked how Red Tails compares to other historic time period movie featuring a black cast like The Help, the panel all agreed that while The Help was a good movie in it's own rights, it's different then Red Tails, which is a movie about men who saved the world and changed history. It's the history changing element that gives this movie a great importance for the African American community

Dr. Roscoe Brown

Dr. Roscoe Brown shared what it was like making history.
"We're always asked if we knew we were doing things to making history. YES! We knew we were changing things. We were excited. But back then many of the white press didn't talk about us, while the black press treated us like stars. We came home to parades and everything from the black community"
While the movie does touch on the racial divide, it's not a race focused movie. The director Anthony Hemingway explained that having George Lucas be a part of the movie help gave it a light and fresh feeling. They didn't want the movie to be serious and controversial. They wanted the real story of the airmen and what they did to come thought above the underline racial tensions of the time.

Red Tails offers a chance to see black men being strong, brave warriors breaking down stereotypes. It's a chance to celebrate black male masculinity. Young black men need a different point of reference beyond slaves, rappers, athletics, etc

I couldn't agree more with that statement! I was honored to attend the press screening of Red Tails (to be posted about later) as well as interview the cast members, directors and producers.

Red Tails Interviews

But this is just the 1st half of the interview. In the 2nd half of my interviews I'll share what the young black actors, Ne-Yo, Elijah Kelly, Tristan Wilds with Cuba Gooding Jr had to shared about preparing for the movie. I'll also share why Cuba Gooding Jr nearly kicked me out the interview room. LOL

Red Tails opens in theaters this Friday and I encourage all to go see the movie!

To learn more about Red Tails movie visit -
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Please Note: I was invited as media to attend the press junket and movie screening. No other compensation was received. Views expressed are always 100% my own.

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  1. I can't wait to see it!!! Can't wait to read more about what you thought of the movie