interviews

Exclusive Interview: Daniel José Older (Author, "Bone Street Rumba" Series)

Daniel José Older is an author you need to know if you’re a lover of sci-fi and fantasy novels. Older is the author of the Bone Street Rumba, series; the first part, Half-Resurrection Blues is already available for purchase. Also exciting is the news that hit earlier this year; Anika Noni Rose has optioned the TV and film rights to Half-Resurrection Blues, which will bring an even more diverse and richer aspect to fantasy entertainment.

I was excited to speak to Older about his writing, how his past life as a paramedic influenced his work, and how literature should provide the answers it needs to people who are in crisis, especially children. Stay on the lookout for his upcoming young adult book, Shadowshaper, as well as his short story on Tor.com; information is below. 

Exclusive Interview: Grace Lee (Director, "American Revolutionary: The Evolution of Grace Lee Boggs")

About two weeks ago, I was able to watch a free screening of American Revolutionary: The Evolution of Grace Lee Boggs, and I was introduced to a woman whom I’d heard about thanks to social media, but has never really understood the impact of her social work. During that same week, I was able to talk to the director of the film, also named Grace Lee.

In the interview below, Lee and I discuss the film’s newest accolade—a Peabody Award—and how Lee came to find what she didn’t she didn’t know she was looking for Boggs. We also discussed the hot issue at the time (and technically still is a hot issue despite it not being featured in the news), the unrest in Baltimore triggered over the police-involved death of Freddie Gray.

American Revolutionary: The Evolution of Grace Lee Boggs is currently available for free viewing on PBS until May 24. Definitely check it out for yourself. 

Exclusive Interview: Kal Parekh ("The Spectacular Jihad of Taz Rahim”)

If you had read my past Moniqueblog recaps of Pan Am (which are still available on the Internet Archive), then you might remember how much I loved Kal Parekh’s co-pilot character Sanjeev, or “The ‘Jeev,” as I called him.

I was able to speak with him back then about his role on the show, and now I’m happy to say I was able to speak with him many years later about his role in a new film,  The Spectacular Jihad of Taz Rahim. 

The film, based on real experiences, tells the story of a Muslim informant hired by the New York Police Department’s intelligence unit to provide information (bated or otherwise) on terrorist activity. Parekh plays Det. Nick Patel, whose intent on meeting his goals could prove to be detrimental.

Read below to learn more about Parekh’s character, as well as more about the film, working with the cast, and how the film tackles the subject of Muslim stereotyping. The Spectacular Jihad of Taz Rahim comes to AMC theaters in Times Square in NY May 29. 

Exclusive Interview: Loren Anthony Discusses "Ridiculous Six"

I’ve been covering the news surrounding The Ridiculous Six for about a week now, and I’m very excited to say that I was able to speak directly to one of the actors who left the film, Loren Anthony.

In this interview, Anthony details what the general feeling was on that particular day of filming and his personal feelings when it came to the absurdly offensive treatment of his people and culture, as reflected in the leaked script. I know there are those out there that have wanted to know how much the actors knew about the film before signing on; Anthony covered this and much more in our phone call, which you’ll read below. 

Exclusive Interview: Joe Lynch (Director, "Everly")

Everly starring Salma Hayek and Hiroyuki Watanabe, is now out on DVD and Blu-ray, and the film features Hayek as a woman who is trapped in a building full of people who want to kill her. Her only goal is to get save her daughter and somehow get out alive, even though the odds are stacked against her.

I was excited to speak with Everly director Joe Lynch about the film, what it was like working with Hayek, and any advice he’d have for filmmakers. You can read our exchange below. 

Interview Rewind: Sahara Davenport ("RuPaul's Drag Race")

Like so many fans of RuPaul’s Drag Race and of drag queens in general, I was extremely sad to learn about Sahara Davenport’s death in 2012. When I was still running Moniqueblog.net, I had the chance to speak with Davenport about her then-latest single, “Go Off.” After getting off the phone with her, I’d hoped I’d be able to catch up with her again in the future. Here’s my interview with Davenport.


Exclusive Interview: Mara Marini Talks Guest Role on "Black-ish"

Tonight’s black-ish will welcome guest star Mara Marini to the party. You might remember her from her guest starring role on Parks and Recreation, and the bubbly actress has brought even more laughs and fun to the already-fun black-ish set.

I was excited to speak with Marini about her time in acting, working with some comedy greats and what’s next for her in her very busy life.

black-ish airs every Wednesday at 9:30/8:30 c on ABC. 

Exclusive Interview: Edy Ganem ("Ana Maria in Novela Land")

Ana Maria in Novela Land could be thought of as Lost in Austen meets the telenovela. A woman becomes a part of her favorite telenovela and realizes more about herself in the process. Edy Ganem plays the lead roles of the telenovela fan, Ana Maria, and the show’s star character Ariana Tomosa, and I was excited to be able to learn more about the roles from her. In an email interview, she explains more about the film, her opinions on the rise of the telenovela in American pop culture, and her favorite telenovela.

Ana Maria in Novela Land is now available on VOD. 

"The Following": Michael Ealy Discusses His Serial Killer Character Theo

Michael Ealy is known for playing the good guy or the guy that you’d want to take home to meet your mom, but there are rare occasions when he’s played the guy you’d never want to meet. On today’s The Following, we’re finally introduced to his character, Theo. As you can expect from a show like The Following, Ealy’s playing a bad guy. A serial killer, to be exact.