We had the good fortune of connecting with Amarachi Nwosu and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Amarachi, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
I’ve always known the power of an image. As someone who is a visual learner, I didn’t resonate with what I was watching on TV growing up and didn’t see an abundance of images like myself through film or photo. This is why I created Melanin Unscripted, not only to create a space for diverse stories, but also diverse executives and creators who bring these stories to life. — I am stepping into challenges to create the representation I want to see and its not always easy, but its bigger than just my efforts alone. Its a collective journey to create change, but it starts with ourself.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
As a filmmaker, writer, photographer and all around creator I explore stories that empower and teach us about ourselves. I have created films and photo essays around the world in places likeTokyo, Lagos, New York, London and Accra. My journey as an image maker started with Photography but then I fell in love with filmmaking because It was a collective process that brought so many worlds together. Cinema brings together writing, music, fashion, location, sound and beyond.
I see film as a mirror of life in form of creation and Imagery plays a big role in how we imagine ourselves and other people around us. It’s also the visualizer of the communication we receive through sound. I use imagery as a way to bring different worlds together and to allow the viewer to receive the message. The biggest challenge I saw as a creator was the very little representation in front and also behind the scenes of the film industry, especially in director roles or executive roles. If you want to see true diversity on the screen, it doesn’t start with the actor or talent, it’s starts with the executive level and how people build the story and the image behind the scenes like the writers and casting agents and show runners and beyond.
With my debut Feature film The Ones Who Keep Walking, the story was rooted in showing the diversity of Africa and that needed to reflect in the image but also behind the scenes. We worked with over 250 crew members and we shot in different environments from city scapes in Johannesburg, to tea farms In Nairobi and Beaches in Lagos and Cote’voire. Through image we were able to take people through so many worlds and that is why I Iove working in a cinematic medium and have been able to push through the challenges.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
What I love about LA is the fact that it has so many different kinds of environments from city to beach to hike. I love grabbing lunch and checking out galleries in the art district, there is also a cool Murakami Exhibition at The broad (Which tends to have great shows!). If you’re in the mood for Italian I would check out Grandmaster Recorders or if you’re in the mood for West African, Veronica’s in Inglewood has great Nigerian Cuisine. If you’re in the mood for shopping, Fairfax or Melrose is always a good bet. I also love Black Market flea, it’s a monthly event that brings together some great black vendors and creators. If you’re in the mood for the beach I would check out Santa Monica or Marina Del Rey.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I would like to give a shoutout to my community and everyone who has influenced my journey from my family, friends, collaborators to the random blogs on tumblr who curated a world that made me see beyond my own and to the writers and storytellers who have taken risks on sharing their truth and in turn inspired me like: Chimmamanda Ngozie Adichie, Spike Lee, Ava and Shonda Rhimes, thank you for creating your own lane and empowering others in it.
Photos of me (Vanessa Dos Santos) Photos of my work (Amarachi Nwosu)