If you know me personally or have ever worked with me up close, then you also know Tilane Jones. Yesterday was her birthday. Perfect day to announce that she has just been appointed President of @ArrayNow. Tilane's contribution to ARRAY over the past decade has been monumental. In Tilane, we have a dynamic, highly-skilled leader with deep experience and commitment to our mission. As ARRAY embarks on our new era of growth and evolution, I'm overjoyed to continue to work side by side with such a terrific executive and an even better human being. Congratulations, @TilaneJ! #Boss
My Gramma is getting her birthday hair cut right now. The postwoman just came in and delivered @VanityFair. Gramma turned to the back cover. Gram: “Your name is here.” Me: “Yes, ma’am. That’s my new project.” Gram: “Oh my, Ava. This is very impressive. Good girl.” Day made. 🙌🏾 #86yearslovely
I got to spend time with my WHEN THEY SEE US family yesterday and every minute was a joy. Netflix screened our film and we had a beautiful talk afterward moderated by my dear friend JJ. Then, our brilliant composer Kris played his piano live with images from the film projected above him. Magnificent. And my stellar teammates from @arraynow were in the house for it all - which made it even better. Earlier in the day, we were honored with four awards by @aafca. It was one of those days that at the end of it, you just smile, basking in the light of friends and loved ones. Hugs to all. xo Styling: @jasonbolden @starburleigh Makeup: @adamburrell Hair: @ladysoulfly
Today is the day that a king was born. His power is his survival. His strength is his sword. He defeats darkness daily. He endures. He inspires. Saluting you today, @KoreyKingWise. I celebrate your life and thank you for letting me be a part of it. Happy Birthday, dear brother. 🙏🏾
Created by yours truly especially for @OWNTV, CHERISH THE DAY follows a different couple each season as they experience the ordinary and the extraordinary days that define romantic relationships. Each episode chronicles 24 hours in the life of two lovers. Welcoming our first season couple: @xoshroq and @alanomiller. It was a pleasure to hand-pick these two wildly talented actors for this journey. Can’t wait to work with them both. We’ll see you on the air in 2020! #believeinlove
Sunday. Time to reflect. To be still. To listen. This week has been a beauty for many reasons. I had to meditate on it for myself. So just finally posting. Thanks to all the crew and cast and execs who worked passionately by my side on this project. A special hug to those who work behind the scenes in positions that don’t get the limelight. Thank you for what you gave. And to the nominees: congrats to you. Onward for all of us. Especially, Antron, Kevin, Raymond, Yusef and Korey. All my love always. 🖤
Korey. Antron. Raymond. Kevin. Yusef. They took the stage last night at the #BETAwards. They received a standing ovation. They felt so much love and support all weekend. Los Angeles welcomed them beautifully. Proud. Love to these brothers. Good men. xo
Mali. Our sunshine. She’s a light and she doesn’t even know it yet. Watch out world when she finds out. May this new year be filled with focus, friendship, fun and firsts of the very best kind. The whole world is out there waiting to be discovered by you. It can’t wait to meet you. Happy birthday, @maliiisalll. With all my love, Your Auntie Ava 🖤
We make a proudly black show about a proud black family. They live in Louisiana. They love each other fiercely. And they have secrets that may very well tear them apart. I remember the night of the debut in 2016. I was nervous. Would people watch a black family on their farmland - living, learning, loving? Thankfully, the answer was yes. Much love to all who’ve embraced QUEEN SUGAR. The Bordelons are back tonight on @OWNTV. And I’m not nervous. I’m proud. xo
Stellar night last night celebrating Denzel Washington’s Lifetime Achievement Award from AFI. Felt like all of Hollywood came out to salute a legend. Don’t know when it airs. But when it does, watch and enjoy. Clips from all his films. Tributes by his co-stars and directors. Film nerd heaven. Styling: @jasonbolden Makeup: @ernestocasillas Hair: @drkariwill Dress: @StJohnKnits
Thank you to the extraordinarily kind and gifted cast + crew who gave their hearts to #WhenTheySeeUs. Everyone immersed themselves fully. Every single day. Every single scene. Every single take. Every single line. We shot a 4.5 hour film in 66 days last summer in/around New York City. There were 117 speaking parts. I love every cast I’ve ever had the honor of working with. I only hire people I want to spend time with. And this time - was a beautiful time. Hard, but beautiful. Hard, but so worth it. Thanks to each and all.
“I’m not going to knock on closed doors. I’m going to make my own door.” Thank you to the incredible team at @THR for this deep dive into #WhenTheySeeUs and into my work through @ArrayNow. The power of film and TV is something we should all be able to harness. Not just a chosen few. Onward for all of us. [link in bio]
Happy Birthday to this beauty. A gem of a woman. Many ups and downs in her life, but she’s kept a magnificent spirit through it all. What a blessing to call her Mom. I love you, Sweetie! 65 years blessed! @darlene.sexton @mayedarlene
Compton meets Town & Country. Thanks to the good folks at the magazine for putting their spotlight on WHEN THEY SEE US and social justice cinema. Beautiful article by @alexb718 accompanies the lovely images by @gigilaub. Thanks to @jasonbolden + @johnmumblo for the styling, @ernestocasillas for the fancy face, @drkariwill for loving my locs and @ibrowsbyeb for the brow love. Link to the article in bio. WHEN THEY SEE US. Netflix. May 31.
The most meaningful award I’ve ever received. Ever. Extremely proud to stand with five of my heroes tonight. To be presented with an award from @InnocenceProject by the men known as The Central Park Five meant everything to me. I respect these men. I love these men like brothers. I’m so honored to tell their story. A story of survival. And of triumph. WHEN THEY SEE US. 5/31. Netflix.
First Met Gala. A collision of the fashion, music, film + sports worlds. Glad I went. Thanks to @Prada for giving me just a bit of exaggeration. This is about as far as I can go. But I enjoyed watching others push their own limits. That’s what creativity is about. Much love to @JasonBolden and @StarBurleigh for styling me down to the shoe buckle, @AdamBurrell for painting my face like artwork and @DrKariWill for creating a loc extravaganza to accentuate how beautiful our natural hair can be. Fun night. 💚💕
Press tour for @WhenTheySeeUs begins today. Eager to share the true story of the Central Park Five! Thanks to @JasonBolden @StarBurleigh @PorscheFabulous and @Best_Loctician for taking me from post-production drab to actually being presentable in public without my Mom asking if I’m getting enough sleep. I look awake and refreshed! Appreciate the illusion! Also... I love skirts with pockets. I mean, why make them any other way? Right? Thanks, @MaraHoffman. ✌🏾
On this day thirty years ago, Trump bought $85,000 worth of ads in all major NYC papers calling for the execution of the boys known as The Central Park 5 - before their trial. Today, we replace his hateful ad with another image. They were innocent. And the system failed them. #WhenTheySeeUs
There aren’t many of us out here doing this. It’s a small tribe in the grand scheme of things. He was a giant among us. Kind. Committed. And immensely talented. His films broke ground. His films mattered. He will be missed. And long remembered. Thank you, John. #RunIntoHisArms
Please help me wish this little boy a happy 30th birthday. Contrary to popular belief at the time, he did not go onto become a Pinocchio officianado. He did grow up to love his family and friends fiercely, to be a hard worker at whatever he does, to be a magnet for all sorts of people through his charisma and genuine care for others, and to be someone of whom I am incredibly proud. Dearest @nicholas_maye, May your 30th year of this mysterious, majestic experience called Life bring you beauty and bravery and every good thing in between. I love you, little brother. Happy birthday! Always, Avy
When Linda McCray’s 14 year old son Antron was arrested for rape, her life changed forever. She defended him when few believed in his innocence. She was right. On Friday, this queen passed away. I’m grateful that she allowed me tell her story of love. Thank you, Ms. Linda. #RunIntoHisArms #CentralParkFive
I worked with @ConstanceWu and @JessicaChastain on my Jay-Z project a couple years ago. They played a founding mother of the United States and a futuristic investigative journalist. @MarieClaire got us together to talk about more future, more power, more sisterhood. Love to you both. Image: @amandademme Styling: @jasonbolden Makeup: @u.z.o Hair: @drkariwill
Oscar Night 2019. Some beautiful wins. And some wins that remind us where we work and what still needs to be done. Loved seeing my comrades out and about. And loved dressing up before I head back to the edit room for the next month. Onward for all of us! Gown: @hrbsn + @jasonbolden Face: @adamburrell Hair: @drkariwill Brows: @ibrowsbyeb Pumps: @malonesouliers Clutch: @louboutinworld Earrings: @loreerodkinofficialjewelry
Oscar Week. Two more nights until the town goes back to normal. But as of now, about to hit the 7th out of 10 parties scheduled this week. I mean, I love seeing folks and celebrating Oscars and all, but we are all really overdoing it. And with that, I’m off. LOL. Thanks for the blush and stuff, @adamburrell. And @therealsirtony for the loc love. #OscarMania
Another beautiful year at the @Essence Black Women in Hollywood luncheon. I look forward to this gathering every year. To see my sisters and hug and smile and connect. Thank you, Essence. Thanks @jasonbolden @ernestocasillas and @therow for the look. And thanks to brother photographer @michaelrowephoto for this image.
A fun night out with my family and friends last night for VH1 Honors. Thanks to @VH1 for the award presented by the one and only @MindyKaling and for including me with dynamic fellow honorees @therealmargaretatwood @taranajaneen and @speakerpelosi. xo Styling: @JasonBolden Gown: @Prada Makeup: @ErnestoCasillas Hair: @DrKariWill Brows: @ibrowsbyeb Earrings: @jenniferfisherjewelry
Happy Valentine’s Day to the one who has my heart. The best nephew a girl can have. He’s just a little peanut butter cup. Just a little brownie with a cherry on top. Squeeze your loved ones today! Happy Love Day!
This woman is my light. For many decades now she’s brightened my days just with the thought of her. My sister @TeraDuVernay is the heartbeat of our family. She holds us all together with a grace and strength that’s hard to describe. And I am forever grateful. Tera, I don’t care if you are a top exec at the most popular new American landmark and a mother and a wife and a real grownup! You are still and forever my Teri Beri. And I will pinch your cheeks when I see you. That’s just how this big sister thing works. 🤷🏽♀️ Sorry. And I love you. And Happy Birthday, my Beautiful Beri! xo
One of the strongest actors of any age that I’ve worked with. His chops are ridiculous. Like, there was a time on set when our background actors literally burst into applause after his scene. That kinda ridiculous. He does the great Korey Wise justice. This love from TEEN VOGUE is very deserved, @jharreljerome. Stay brave in your work and suave in your photo shoots, sir. The untold story of the Central Park Five is coming soon. xo
Last summer, a wild and wonderful thing happened. I got a call to guest edit an issue of @TIME Magazine dedicated to Optimism. It was only the second such issue. The first was edited by none other than Bill Gates. After picking myself up off the floor, I went to work selecting the theme (Art as Optimism), the cover subjects (Queen Cicely Tyson and South African painter Nelson Makamo) and the featured artists and curators. Working on this issue with the stellar team at TIME, helped me to remember a simple truth. That prioritizing hope whenever possible is a brave and bold thing to do. In that way, this issue is a gift to me, a necessary reminder to grasp joy with both arms and embrace it like a great love. Hope you enjoy. Online today. On stands tomorrow. 🖤
“I have the nerve to walk my own way, however hard, in my search for reality, rather than climb upon the rattling wagon of wishful illusions.” - Zora Neale Hurston. Happy Birthday, Queen Sister Friend. 🖤
Maori. Woman. Filmmaker. Legend. Proud to distribute this gem. Straight out of #Sundance2019 and coming at you from @ARRAYNow. The life and times of a cinema icon. MERATA! Second picture is of our beautiful new filmmakers celebrating the moment they joined the ARRAY family. Fills my heart with joy, joy, joy!
Had to hop a quick turnaround flight to Atlanta to hold this sweetie pie peanut butter. My little brother’s first baby. Five days old. I pray for his life. And for his parents. Congratulations, @mr_maye. Overflowing with love and gratitude for this glorious new member of our family.
Dear Jina, Happiest of birthdays. It was you and me before anyone else. My first sister. My first gift. I am so, so happy about this happy season in your life. New city. New job. New dreams. I’d say new hair too, ‘cause your hair looks like the best weave money can buy but it’s freakishly all yours, so no new hair. 🤣Just happy hugs and truest, deepest wishes for every good thing. I love you, Jina. Always know that. Your sister, A.
Can’t let a good challenge pass me by. 2008 to 2018 and blessed to have every day in between. #10YearChallenge
What a year. I chose ten professional highlights that are shareable. Plus my favorite picture this year of my family. But, the real treasures are the beautiful moments, brimming with meaning, that can’t be captured. The time with family, friends and comrades. The smiles that rise when you are content. The hugs and touches that comfort. The expressions of appreciation for our work. The tears that heal us. The dreams that fuel us. The love that makes it all mean something. Thank you, 2018, for all you taught me. I learned a lot, laughed a lot, loved a lot. And I’m grateful. xo
This is my younger brother Kristopher. He’s a Christmas Eve baby. Today he celebrates another year around the sun. I think his 30th year might have been one of his best yet. I think it kicked off a new era in his life. Kris, I hope 31 holds more love, more friendship, more personal milestones, more spiritual progress, more professional fulfillment, more family time, more friendship, more fun, more laughter, more lessons, more light, more of everything good. You deserve it all, @mr_maye. Happy birthday, sir. I love you. xo
#tbt. little black girl magic.
I’m lucky to have many jobs. One is as a film distributor through @ArrayNow. Since 2010, we’ve distributed films by directors of color and women directors of all kinds. Today, our 20th film lands on Netflix coinciding with International Day of Persons with Disabilities. Go to @Netflix to check out ROLL WITH ME, the incredible true story of record-breaking Palestinian-American Gabriel Cordell, directed by documentarian @LisaFrance2067. We’re proud to distribute this work and continue our mission to increase visibility and inclusion for all.
When your friends love one of your favorite artists too. A beautiful surprise morning visit and shopping spree with these art lovers and @NelsonMakamo before we head home. Goodbye, South Africa! And thank you!
What a thrill to visit the studio of one of my favorite artists, @NelsonMakamo. An honor, in fact. I can’t wait to welcome this dignified lady into my home. Thank you for introducing me to her, Nelson. And for your gorgeous vision of us. Your work makes me think of our joy and our grace, our triumph and our future.
I’m here in London checking on my friends, the bad-ass, epic architect and miracle worker JJ Abrams and the history-making, fierce and phenomenal @VictoriaMahoney. Here’s Victoria in her Star Wars IX offices at the famous Pinewood Studios. How she and our dear JJ look so spry and fresh after all these months shooting is incredible. That’s the sign of a happy set, led by good people. 👊🏾
“Warner Bros is a terrific partner on matters of visibility + belonging for all kinds + cultures of people, which is our mission at Forward Movement. Couldn’t be happier to call Warner Bros TV my production home.” Thanks for the love and light, folks. Really appreciated. xo, A.
Black Directors Galore! Can you name us all? My dream was to have everyone who was in the room in one shot. John Singleton, Barry Jenkins, George Tillman, Regina King and Boots Riley were there, but couldn’t grab them all. One day, I’ll get that shot and then some. With all the sister filmmakers too. One day. Watch. Consider this a prelude.
I’ve been directing on location for the past six months looking like the epitome of Set Life (aka not cute). So big thanks to the squad for taking me from Drab to Fab. Seriously. They had a hard job. My friends at @Prada designed a gown for me guided by the maestro @jasonbolden. My locs were lovingly styled by the boss @drkariwill. Brows by the sweet @ibrowsbyeb. And makeup by the one and only @adamburrell. Whew! Ya girl feels resurrected! 🙌🏾