By Tribune Staff
NASHVILLE, TN — Ruth E. Carter has earned plaudits and an Oscar award for her brilliance as a costume designer. But she’s stepping into a new role in Hollywood with a forthcoming biopic. She’s become a producer on the film “African/American,” which stars Roc Nation rapper Vic Mensa. The announcement was exclusively reported on the website news Black Film and TV.
It’s based on the story of Howard University alum Sydney Hall, aka Syd Money. Mensa has the lead role which chronicles the rise of both Money and South African rap. The Soweto-born artist has helped popularize rapping in a mixture of both English and “vernac” languages – also known as Kasi rap. Syd Money gathered a talented group to help create his critically acclaimed album “Heads and Tales.” The group has become some of South Africa’s most adored hip hop producers. Fans of the production team know about such artists as Draztik, Omen, AMU, Dome, Dplanet, Hoodlum, Beatmaker and Nyemz.
Carter said the upcoming production was all about the culture. She told the outlet “I am excited to tell this dynamic story about survival and cultural identities. African/American ignites the sense of right place, right time in a way that makes you believe that you can do anything you set your mind to.”
The film also serves as a tribute to Linda Mkhize aka ProKid, who worked alongside Syd Money. ProKid died of a seizure in 2018. She would have turned 40 this year. “African/American” also examines parallels between the African and African American experiences.
The script is written by actor/writer Jamie Burton-Oare (“Soulful Steps”) and writer/director Skye Dennis (“Myra’s Angel”). Dennis will also direct the film. Carter recently earned a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, becoming the first Black costume designer to achieve such a feat. Her recent works include “Coming 2 America,” and her Oscar-win for “Black Panther.”