Tag Archives: Dee Rees

Dee Rees Teams With ‘Get Out’ Producer For Horror About Black Lesbians In Rural America

Screenwriter Dee Rees and Get Out Producer Jason Blum are joining forces for what should be a one-of-a-kind movie that speaks to the terror of homophobia, sexism and racism, at the very least.

Blum made a name for himself as one of Hollywood’s most prolific horror producers, having recently worked on Get Out, Split, and The Purge.

Rees directed the Pariah, which centres on a young black lesbian coming to terms with her sexuality and familial rejection. She also earned a Golden Globe nomination for the biopic Bessie, about 1920s queer blues singer Bessie Smith staring Queen Latifah.

The duo apparently met at the Sundance Institute while giving speeches, Rees approaching Blum and offering a movie pitch:

You’ve got me and my wife, two black lesbians, and when we first moved in, we fought every day over all these little things: ‘Why is this over there? Did you move that?’

Maybe it was a ghost. Or maybe it was some other force — like us not wanting to be there or fitting in. Anyway, that’s my horror-movie pitch.”

Blum immediately replied the two should work together, with The Tracking Board confirming they had indeed signed a deal soon after the initial meeting.

Queen Latifah Looks To Quash Sexuality Rumours

Ah a celebrity lesbian rumour. They always catch our attentions; and one woman always on our radar is Queen Latifah.

In a new interview for Variety, Latifah addressed her sexuality, or rather the lack of clarity about it on it.


Since she starred earlier this year, as bisexual blues icon Bessie Smith in her HBO biopic, questions have surfaced once more about who she is bedding.

At the time, Latifah, as usual, refused to open up about her sexuality. Now, she’s explaining why neither fans nor bloggers nor tabloids will ever hear a word from her about whom she’s bedding.

I know what I’m doing in my private life, and I know what I’m not, and I know me. And people who are not privy to that don’t know; they don’t know what they think they know. This is Bessie’s story. It has nothing to do with my life. There’s a difference for me between being honest and sharing my business with people who don’t need to know my business. So why would I start doing anything differently now because of ‘Bessie’?”

Although Latifah refuses to open up about her sexuality, she explains that she understands why people talk about it so much.

Also read: Queen Latifah Says Homophobia is Still Widespread in the Entertainment Industry


I think it’s human nature. People have curiosity about people’s sexuality, because we’re curious about sex. I think the problem is we don’t talk about it enough. We act like sex is bad sometimes. We act like love is bad sometimes, or makes you weak somehow.”

To be fair, it’s not just an issue of being interested in sex. Fans have also had their interest piqued because of a number of photos of Latifah in intimate settings with a few of her alleged girlfriends.


However, Latifah explains that she tries not to focus on what the tabloids are saying about her.

At some point I told all my friends, ‘Don’t come to me with negative stuff in a magazine.’ Let them write whatever they want to write. I can’t control it,”

Although Latifah has gotten used to tabloid talk about her sex life, she says there’s one area of her life where she refuses to let the tabloids pry.

Don’t write about her family.

Then I’m ready to not only sue you, but put a knuckle sandwich in your mouth. That’s where my Jersey roots come out!”

Queen Latifah Says Homophobia is Still Widespread in the Entertainment Industry

Queen Latifah – the Grammy winning rapper, and Emmy nominated actress – says she thinks homophobia is still as prevalent in the entertainment industry as it was half a century ago.

Talking to the Metro, about her recent role as legendary bisexual blues singer Bessie Smith, Latifah said:


I think she was probably more open then than people are now. It was a different era, but people weren’t as politically correct as they are now.”

However, the actress thinks that although people claim to be more open-minded, they are still as bigoted as they were fifty years – they have just learnt to “hide it” better.

They can be just as racist, sexist and classist [sic] now as then but they just won’t say it in the same way now. They’ll kind of hide it.”

Talking of why she took the part of Smith, she added

I’ve kind of been through some of the things that Bessie has been through. I’ve lived a little bit of her and I can speak from a more authentic place.”


She also said that she wishes more fellow rappers would “say more” about serious subjects and “go against the grain to keep things interesting.”

It takes a little courage – people have to be brave enough to use their voices, not to be the status quo.”

She previously said of the film:

People’s ideas in general are antiquated when it comes to who you love. We haven’t moved as quickly as we probably should. The reality is that there’s always been gay people in the black community, so it’s not foreign to us. And not just as a black community but just a society as a whole.

Who you choose to marry is really up to you and it’s not something you should be judged on. I don’t find being gay or lesbian to be a character flaw. Couples should be protected under the laws of this country period.

It actually angers me. It’s not unusual so let’s be adults and let’s move forward.”

‘Bessie’ Director Dee Rees Discusses How the Fearless Bisexual Singer Inspired Change (Video)

Fearless filmmaker Dee Rees discusses how Bessie Smith challenged her to challenge audiences and inspire change. Watch her critically acclaimed film Bessie on HBO NOW.

Queen Latifah gives the most impressive performance of her film career in the movie Bessie. Last month she talked to to BET’s Clay Kane,  and opened up about the lesbian love scenes in the film, and says people shouldn’t be caught off guard by what they see.


People feel a type of way when they see any sexuality on-screen. I think its almost human nature. People are so fascinated by it. It shouldn’t even be a discussion. But it is, because people are still curious, and people still wonder how they feel about things. At the end of the day I don’t really care if someone feels uncomfortable about it. It is what it is, and it’s life. So you either deal with it or not. It’s just part of who she is, and I had to tell the story honestly.”