More Than Basketball: Kobe Bryant: The Author & Filmmaker

fd88f45b864b174c887a160f6d60992e1710479935580106781.jpgI’ve never done a tribute post on the blog before. I’ve done author spotlights, on known writers, who’ve long since shuffled off this mortal coil. Yet, never before has a reason presented itself to halt my planned writing and create something new. Something to commemorate the literary achievements of an individuals who’s light was dimmed too soon. 

I wasn’t sure what I wanted to say at first. In the time it takes me to write this blog post billions of media outlets everywhere will have broken the story and shared the sad news. We frequently look at our entertainers and athletes as unbreakable.  In fact my fiancée often jokes that today’s athletes are the modern day superheroes we should show homage to.

Yet here only 48 hours removed from the news about the fatal helicopter crash that claimed the life of retired basketball great Kobe Bryant and his teenaged daughter Gianna. We are all still reeling.

I could spend this post rehashing the tragedy, or chronicling the many stats about his sports career. But, this is Blu Moon Fiction and here we talk about books. So this post istextgram_15807350178752127303591187710.png dedicated to Kobe Bryant, the author, filmmaker and podcast producer. Who walked off of the court a basketball legend and entered the arena where his entrepreneurial spirit could really shine.

His first book was the Mamba Mentality, Mamba the nickname he’d earned on the court has become a mantra he’d lived by. Bryant’s personal perspective of his life and career on the basketball court and his exceptional, insightful style of playing the game can be found in those pages. 

His ode to basketball, a poem titled, “Dear Basketball” which later became an Oscar -award winning short film,  was a bittersweet chronicle of his childhood passion for the sport while also serving as his farewell as his body was no longer to support his desire to 77a8f9555fb859e96e7ef7c25eb425551840022950490357012.jpgplay.  The short-film adaptation is still known as the best-known effort by Bryant’s production company, Granity Studios.

“Don’t think about handling finances. Don’t think about going into business. Don’t think that you want to be a writer — that’s cute. I got that a lot.”

Bryant was met with a lot of skepticism when deciding to leave sports and venture into other markets. He’d never let the doubters hinder his success. Partnering with Alibaba Group, a Chinese multinational conglomerate holding company specializing in e-commerce, retail, Internet, and technology,  he released his 2015 documentary “Muse” in China. 

Kobe founded Granity, formerly Kobe Studios, his objective was on creating projects that screenshot_20200203-160909_chrome1186532426579637927.jpgmarried his love of storytelling and sports. Those who worked with him during that time, recalled the inspiration he drew from brilliant minds like; Steve Jobs, Walt Disney and J.K. Rowling.

Other projects from Granity, included the ESPN Plus sports analysis series “Detail,” written, produced and hosted by Bryant. He also produced “The Punies,” a podcast featuring fictional stories about a group of youths chasing big dreams in sports, and collaborated with author Wesley King on the Wizenard Series, a young-adult franchise that combined fantasy and sports.

Wizenard tells the story of the, West Bottom Badgers. Lowest-ranked basketball team in their league, living in the poorest neighborhood in Dren. New coach, Professor Wizenard arrives on the first day of training camp, promising to change things.  Every player experiences unique and strange visions,  challenging  everything they thought they knew about basketball, their lives and their secrets off the court. 

I do prefer to keep my books and my sports separate,  because of this, I would never have known this series even existed if he hadn’t passed away. Before his untimely passing, Kobe had been working on another project with famed Brazilian author Paulo Coelho, who wrote Bryant’s favorite book, “The Alchemist.” The loss of his writing partner caused Coelho to tweet, 

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There is so much more that could be said about the award winning- athlete and entrepreneur, whose spirit and motivation served as a catalyst and even as a testament to others. His passing will be felt worldwide, but the mark he made on not just the world of sports but the world in generation will be a legacy no one could forget. 

 

Which of these Kobe Bryant Projects Have You Heard of?  Leave A Comment Below!

 

You can keep up with me, Noel Bleu and Blu Moon Fiction on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, GoodReads and Pinterest, or Shoot me an email @ BluMoonFiction@gmail.com

Movie Mondays: A Fall From Grace (My Netflix Addiction)

I am a big fan of Tyler Perry’s work. The Madea franchise was the backdrop for my teenage years. The Haves and The Have Nots back when I had cable was one of my favorite shows. So when I saw that Netflix was trending, A Fall From Grace, I was super excited. When I saw the cast, (all of the stars from Tyler Perry’s TV shows) I was thrilled to see what was happening. 

My love affair with Tyler Perry films has been on the downswing lately. The Madea franchise for me has fizzled out and there are only but so many Christian themed films I can watch, where the matriarch is dying thus bringing the family together, before I lose my mind.  I even allowed his recent video discussing how he is the only person who writes his scripts to lure me into a false sense of security regarding  this movie. 

I.WAS. WRONG.

Despite the social media buzz this movie generated I was not a fan at all.  I even let my homie from Florida suggest when we watched it since she saw the ending and wanted to watch 102c82ff6629ac42eb394b7ab72f364e2460398002016005849.jpgfrom the beginning.

This movie had me looking at her sideways and vowing to never let her choose another title again. There were so many plot holes.  The acting was subpar, and I found myself wondering, How Long Is This Movie Again?

Why hadn’t she sought legal assistance or counsel after finding herself victim to the wiles of a con-man especially for the felony?

Why would she not just divorce him? How was his behavior not considered a form of psychological or emotional abuse?

How were there no resources available to her? How does a woman that age even allow herself to put up with that especially after a divorce. 

The more questions I asked the more I got irritated by the movie, it’s many plummeting plot holes. The weak storyline held together with chewing gum. The piss poor acting job done by all of the cast, despite several of them being so talented. The movie failed on so many levels for me it’s hard to pickf0a07d38acba3a1894977a555f69d8345284428940055181309.jpg something I did like. 

The character of Grace was just unrealistic, I don’t care how old or lonely you are no one is going to sit there and put up with that especially after they’ve already been divorced once. 

Regarding the lawyer…

WORST.LAWYER.EVER. not even from a novice standpoint. The character of Jessica was a disgrace to her title and should’ve been disbarred. I don’t know a lawyer in the land who doesn’t understand you should cross – examine your witness, but to then get yourself thrown in jail for contempt when you’re supposed to be defending me? 

FIRED! and then I’m suing the law office from my cell. 

The best part about this movie was Phylicia Rashad and Cicely Tyson. Not their characters or their performances, just the fact that Mr. Perry has been able to cultivate and nurture such great working relationships with these women, that they’ll happily join his projects no matter what. 

I’m over it, the credits have rolled and I’m on to the next. I hate to say it but after that movie, I’m looking forward to seeing the second season of YOU. The internet has been going crazy about that too but i’m not sure if I still trust ya’ll.

 

 

What Did You Think of A Fall From Grace? What’s Your Favorite Tyler Perry Movie?

 Leave a comment below!

 

You can keep up with me, Noel Bleu and Blu Moon Fiction on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, GoodReads and Pinterest, or Shoot me an email @ BluMoonFiction@gmail.com

 

 

 

LiteraryPhilly.Org Launch Party!

20200119_190112.jpgMoment of truth time ladies and gents, as a book blogger, I spend about 75% of my time online looking for -literary events to go to. Outside of reading books, a large part of my job i’m learning, is networking with authors and other bookish entities like myself.  It’s a lengthy process of following a series of links down a rabbit hole and hoping to compile a fair calendars worth at the end.

It gets tiresome.

But a solution has been created.

Literary Philly, a public calendar for Philly’s literary community to share their events free of charge.  Is a tool allowing anyone to explore the dozens of literary events that occur in the greater Philadelphia metropolitan area each month.

Tonight we celebrated the launch of this brilliant idea as well as the start of the 2020FB_IMG_1579487420912.jpg literary event season. Hosted by Blue Stoop, 215 Festival and of course Literary Philly.

The site  LiteraryPhilly.org will of course host events from Blue Stoop 215 but will also be the place to check out updates for the 215 Festival.

Blue Stoop was gracious enough to share the spotlight of IMG_29091.jpgtheir January Writer Happy Hour, to celebrate the launch of the website. They’ll be at Win Win Coffee Bar next month also. 

There were drinks and amazing food. Special shout out to Asia who’s #WriterJawn t-shirt was the talk of the event. Overall I’d call tonight a great success, i’m looking forward to working with the ladies of All Things Literature as well as the wonderful minds behind Blue Stoop and the 215 Festival.

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Most memorable thing about tonight would have to the food, check out the @blumoonfiction IG page for more about the amazing food we had tonight. 

 

What Are Some Ways You Find Literary Events in Your Area?

 Leave a comment below!

 

You can keep up with me, Noel Bleu and Blu Moon Fiction on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, GoodReads and Pinterest, or Shoot me an email @ BluMoonFiction@gmail.com

 

 

 

Octavia’s Butler’s Kindred Lays The Foundation for Lionsgate Films’ Antebellum

If this is not your first time reading the blog then you know a year or so ago, I reviewed a book called Kindred for What We’re Reading. A few weeks ago someone commented on an old post I did promoting the book as well as the blog post and I have been floored. After a little bit of fact – checking I am proud to announce that.

KINDRED IS BEING MADE INTO A MOVIE!

OK, not technically….but, a movie heavily inspired by the plot and events from Kindred is currently in production from Lionsgate films.

Antebellum, as they have decided to name it, tells the story of successful author, Veronica Henley, who finds herself trapped in a nightmarish

reality (of the past) and must find a way to break free of the horrors at hand, before it’s too late.

The story closely mirrors, Butler’s novel in that the main character, Dana is forced to travel from her time in 1976 to the antebellum south repeatedly at the call of a young boy named Rufus.

The book expertly drags the reader along for the ride as Dana spends the story trying to uncover how she and Rufus are connected while also trying not to succumb to the hopelessness of slavery.

The movie itself is being billed as horror/thriller somewhere in the neighborhood of “Get Out” and “Us” despite Jordan Peele having no parts of this movie.

The directorial and production team are the same minds who worked on those other movies

Written and directed by Gerard Bush and Christopher Renz, both of whom worked on “Get Out” and “Us”. Antebellum is their directorial debut for Lionsgate films. The cast for Antebellum includes Janelle Monáe (Hidden Figures), Gabourey Sidibe (Empire), Eric Lange (Narcos), Jena Malone (The Hunger Games), Jack Huston (Boardwalk Empire), Kiersey Clemons (Sweetheart), and Marque Richardson (Dear White People).

Kindred depicts Dana as being in a bi-racial relationship and details how both she and her partner Kevin Franklin endure the mysterious goings on between Dana and the past.

Though few details have been revealed I’m curious to see if Antebellum will be keeping that part of the story.

Antebellum is already in post-production and is slated to be released April 24, 2020.

 

Will you be heading to the movies to see Antebellum? Leave a comment below!

 

You can keep up with me, Noel Bleu and Blu Moon Fiction on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, GoodReads and Pinterest, or Shoot me an email @ BluMoonFiction@gmail.com