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2016, without a doubt, will go down as a triumphant year in Black cinema. We all cheered as we watched Black excellence grace both small and big screens alike. And thanks to the incredible talent, the level of diversity across the Academy Awards categories this year is virtually unprecedented.

While it has been an exultant year, we still have a long way to go to achieve true diversity. True diversity is having a seat at the table for not only the Ava DuVernays, Shonda Rhimes, and Mara Brock Akils, but also for the slew of talented outsiders knocking at the door like Stacey Muhammad.

Muhammad has been quietly, but confidently, killing the game for some time now. The New Orleans native has dominated the industry with her impressive roster of groundbreaking, thought-provoking, cutting edge storytelling. One of her most familiar works, For Colored Boys, is a web series inspired by Ntozake Shange’s acclaimed theatre piece, For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow Isn’t Enuf. The riveting series follows seven Black men navigating and overcoming challenges, facing their fears, finding their truth, mending broken relationships, finding love, building families and inspiring lives. 

In 2015, Muhammad co-founded 1930 Productions, a Los Angeles-based production company, with journalist Marc Lamont Hill. Their trailblazing work has been broadcast on the likes of BET, Centric, HBO, and ASPIRE, to name a few.

Team Beautiful had the opportunity to catch up with Stacey Muhammad to discuss her favorite Black female characters in television and film. Press play to hear what the award-winning filmmaker had to say about the Black female characters who, as Viola Davis once said, “redefined what it means to be beautiful, to be sexy, to be a leading woman, to be Black.”

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