(LOS ANGELES – 1.30.23) – The 2023 Pan African Film & Arts Festival today announced STRANGE LOVE as its Centerpiece Gala selection. The premiere is set to take place Wednesday, February 15 at 7:00 PM at the Cinemark Baldwin Hills & XD. Tickets go on sale January 31 at paff.org.
Dewayne “Kountry Wayne” Colley, in his first leading-man role, stars as Deshawn Green a sex-deprived husband, married to Megan, played by Marquita Goings (“Woke”). Megan works as a phone sex operator against Deshawn’s wishes, pleasing her male callers with her erotic talk, but leaving her “man” sexually starved. Deshawn and Megan are living in a cramped, crappy, apartment next to noisy neighbors. Megan uses their current dilapidated living conditions as an excuse to withhold sexual favors; she refuses to have sex until their living situation improves. A call to his buddy Chip played by Michael “Mike Bless” Anthony (“Raising Dion”) leads to an introduction to a shady cousin/lawyer named Raymond Talbot (played by Carl Anthony Payne II). He has the perfect house at an “unbelievable price.” Desperate to save their marriage, Deshawn and Megan buy the “too good to be true” house only to find out it’s haunted. This Black love story gets creepy when Deshawn gives in to the pleasures of Candice The Ghost played by Erica Pinkett (“Secret Society”). The only question left is will Deshawn save his marriage with Megan or will he choose Candice’s Strange Love?
“Little Women Atlanta” star Shirlene “Ms. Juicy” King plays the “freaky” ghost Lindsey; actress Patrice Lovely (“Boo! A Madea Halloween”) as Marge Reener and Rolonda Rochelle (“Chicago Fire”) as Dr. Stephanie both take a turn at exorcizing the ghosts from Deshawn and Megan’s new home in this quirky, offbeat, comedy-horror.
Payne directs a cast that represents the blending of Colley and Tressa Azarel Smallwood’s creativity. The cast is a mashup of established actors like Goings and Lovely with social influencers like Anthony (Mike Bless) and Rochelle (Ro)–from the popular “Kountry Wayne” sketches–and reality stars-turned-actors like King and Pinkett. Under Payne’s direction, they create an original, raw, sexy, hilarious, entry to the comedy-horror genre.
STRANGE LOVE is executive produced and financed by Colley’s Kountry Wayne Entertainment in partnership with Smallwood’s MegaMind Media where they’ve joined forces to create Laughing to the Bank LLC as their joint venture company. Donte Lee and Jermaine Smith also serve as executive producers for Laughing to the Bank LLC.
As previously announced, PAFF kicks off February 9 with CHEVALIER. Inspired by the incredible story of composer Joseph Bologne, Chevalier de Saint-Georges. The son of an enslaved African woman and a French plantation owner, Bologne (Kelvin Harrison Jr. in a tour de force performance) rises to improbable heights in French society as a celebrated violinist-composer and fencer, complete with an ill-fated love affair and a falling out with Marie Antoinette (Lucy Boynton) herself and her court.
PAFF will take place February 9-20, 2023. Now in its 31st year, the Festival is returning to the Cinemark Baldwin Hills and XD and the adjacent Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza will host its renowned fine art show featuring over 100 established and emerging fine artists and quality craftspeople from all over the Black Diaspora. This year’s film festival features over 150 films from 40 countries, in 19 languages, including 50 World and 22 North American premieres. Of the films selected for the Festival, 39% are helmed by female, queer or non-binary filmmakers. The Festival film guide is available here. Passes are on sale now and can be purchased at paff.org. Individual tickets go on sale January 31, 2023.
For updates on the complete list of programming for the 2023 Pan African Film & Arts Festival, follow @PAFFNow on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube or visit paff.org and sign up for the official PAFF newsletter.
About the Pan African Film & Arts Festival
Taking place February 9-20, 2023, in Los Angeles, the Pan African Film & Arts Festival (PAFF) presents and showcases a broad spectrum of Black creative works, particularly those that reinforce positive images and help to destroy negative stereotypes of Africans and African-Americans. Since 1992, PAFF has remained dedicated to the promotion of Black stories and images through the exhibition of film, visual art, and other creative expression. Today, PAFF is one of the largest and most prestigious Black film festivals in the U.S. and attracts local, national, and international audiences. In addition, it is an Oscar-qualifying festival for animation and live-action films, and one of the largest Black History Month events in America. The Pan African Film Festival is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.
For more information, please visit paff.org.
About MegaMind Media
MegaMind Media is an American Film & TV production company based in the DMV area specializing in book-to-film adaptations and original television series and programming. The company was founded by Award-Winning Book Publisher and Movie Producer, Tressa “Azarel” Smallwood, and Business Guru, Donte Lee. MegaMind Media has joined forces with major TV networks, such as BET, BET Her, BET+, TV One, and AMC AllBlk to release several projects including: Wicked City,Trophy Wife, “The Available Wife”, and “All In”, which received the Audience Award for Best Narrative Feature at the American Black Film Festival in 2019.
About Kountry Wayne Entertainment
Kountry Wayne Entertainment is an Atlanta-based entertainment company focusing on producing drama and comedic projects with an emphasis on giving opportunities to the next generation creatives and producers wanting to elevate and monetize their gifts and talents. Kountry Wayne believes in the new wave of independent filmmaking where mentorship and collaboration are key elements.