Hilary Banks wants to educate the kids, beauties!
Karyn Parsons, who played the adorable Hilary Banks back in the day on “Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air,” recently created a Kickstarter to raise funds for an educational animated short called “The Janet Collins Story.” Janet Collins was the first African American ballerina to perform solo at the Metropolitan Opera. When Collins was 15 years old, the company Ballet Russes De Monte-Carlo offered to give her a dance position in the company only if she performed in whiteface. The precocious dancer turned it down, but her slight obstacle only prepared her for her future accomplishments as a ballet pioneer at the Met. Comedian Chris Rock will join the project to narrate Collins’ inspiring journey.
Parsons hopes to raise enough money through Kickstarter to compensate the film’s illustrator, the team behind the project’s creative studio PixelPirate Production, and other crew members behind the film. The production is a part of Parsons’ Sweet Blackberry, a non-profit organization she started in 2005 that aims to expose Black children to stories about African Americans that are known to few. Although facts about leaders, like Martin Luther King Jr., are important, they are not the only stories that should be told, according to Parsons. “In schools, we’re only taught about a handful of stories on African Americans and their achievements,” Parson says in the Kickstarter video. “I think it’s important that we get to these kids young and we engage them an excite them about these incredible people that came before them.”
Parsons and her team at Sweet Blackberry have already produced two short animated nonfiction films — “The Journey of Henry Box Brown,” a story about a slave who mailed himself to freedom and “Garrett’s Gift,” a story on traffic light inventor Garrett Morgan — and hope to create more in the future. And, in case you’d like to know, Parsons’ former “Bel-Air” co-star Will Smith agreed to contribute money to the film as well. I’m excited to see what else Parsons has in store and would love to see this project get off the ground. From her video promoting the animated short, the stories look polished and it seems as if her team spent a lot of time laying out the groundwork for each production.
Here’s to hoping this cute, educational film is seen everywhere!
PUT A RING ON IT: The 7 Greatest TV Proposals Of All-Time!
1. He Finally Put A Ring On It!
March 20 is National Proposal Day and what better way to celebrate it then looking back on our favorite proposals on TV! From Trevor's hilariously tragic proposal to Hilary on "The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air" to Jamie Foxx's love song to Fancy, we rounded up our 6 faves. Someone, please pass the Kleenex!
2. A Different World
Arguably one of the best Black sitcom proposals in life, Dwayne and Whitley's proposal couldn't have come at a more awkward moment: Whitley getting married to another man. The proposal could've gone wrong for Dwayne if she said no.
3. The Jamie Foxx Show
Jamie and Fancy was flirting and joking with each other for years on "The Jamie Foxx Show," but when it was time for Jamie to propose, the funny man made us tear up.
4. The Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air
Although this proposal had a tragic ending, we know Trevor's intentions were genuine. I mean, like, who proposes with a bun-jee jump?!
When Q tries to convince Moesha to drop out of college and live with him in Tokyo for his rap career (**chuckle**), Q gives her an option that's difficult to refuse.
6. Boy Meets World
Just admit that you waited every week for a new "Boy Meets World" episode like us. We knew the proposal was eventually going to happen, but Topanga proposing to Corey --at high school graduation, no less -- was a surprise, especially in the '90s.
What happens when you mix Brian McKnight with one of the funniest men on TV in the '90s? Absolute magic.
8. Keeping Up With The Kardashians
No matter what we think about the hype surrounding Kanye and Kim's relationship, we can all agree that Kanye's televised proposal was one only he could get away with. Complete with fireworks and a full orchestra, this proposal only solidifies the couple's extravagant lifestyle for better OR worse.