New Hollywood Podcast: Stella Meghie Talks ‘The Photograph’ And The Return Of Black-Led Romantic Dramas

By Dino-Ray Ramos, Amanda N'Duka

Stella Meghie’s debut feature film Jean of the Joneses made its world premiere at SXSW in 2016. She was nominated for a Spirit Award and immediately became a director to watch. She went on to direct the adaptation of Nicola Yoon’s YA novel Everything, Everything starring Amandla Stenberg (friend of the podcast) as well as The Weekend starring Saturday Night Live alum Sasheer Zamata.

Meghie’s next film, a romantic drama titled The Photograph starring Issa Rae and LaKeith Stanfield, is slated to open on Valentine’s Day. With a trailer that echoes black-led romantic dramas like Love and Basketball and Brown Sugar, it is already garnering anticipation. If there is one common thread woven through Meghie’s films, it is that they put a black woman at the center of a thoughtful and nuanced story that always gives a different perspective of the black experience.

Meghie got her start in PR before moving into screenwriting, and her need for storytelling shined with each film she released. She has directed episodes of Grown-ish and Insecure and is set to helm the upcoming Fox comedy American Princess, where she will reteam with Rae. That film will be produced by Paul Feig and comes from a script by Amy Aniobi. Needless to say, Meghie is a busy woman. She talked to us at the New Hollywood Podcast about switching career paths, how Jean of the Joneses informed what kind of filmmaker she wanted to be, and the challenges of being a woman of color in Hollywood.

Listen to the episode below.

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