Malia Dawkins is known for her acting work on shows like Jonas and Wizards of Waverly Place, but now she’s adding the titles of screenwriter and producer to her list of talents.
Dawkins’ first film, Rapunzel Jackson, created through her production company East to West Productions, is set to show at Los Angeles’ Pan African Film Festival, and I was excited to speak with Dawkins about the film, which focuses on a girl who gets her first perm. We also discussed black women’s complicated relationship with hair, the self-placed boundaries between natural and permed hair, and where the conversations about both hair types can meet in the middle.
Rapunzel Jackson is directed by Dabling Harward (who, as Dawkins said, was a “dream director,”) and stars Morgan Ashley in the title role. The rest of the cast includes Dawkins, Juanita Jennings, Haley Powell, Coley Speaks, Bruce Lemon, Demitris Dajoun and Marissa Herrera. Rapunzel Jackson will screen at the Pan African Film Festival this Sunday, Feb. 8 at 2:10pm and Tuesday, Feb. 10 at 1:40pm. You can learn more at the festival’s site.