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Black Woman Filmmaker Defies Stereotypes
Writer/Director Najaa Young Goes Hard In Bold New Indie Film Blood First
This year NaRa Films, which Najaa co-founded with business partner Rasheed Jihad, will be releasing two films, the documentary American Africans and the action filled drama Blood First, which they co-produced with O.Y.’s Spotlite Entertainment. Blood First is about two brothers from a tough neighborhood in Pittsburgh, PA, who grow up to follow their father’s footsteps into a dangerous life of crime, violence and imprisonment. “One could look at the film like it’s a typical urban drama but it isn’t. The film weaves the past with the present and shows how adults, specifically parents, influence young men to become gangsters by perpetuating negative ideas of what manhood is.” When asked if she will continue to do urban themed films which are often criticized for perpetuating violence in inner city communities Najaa responded, “I am going to continue to do films that interest me. My documentary American Africans is about African Americans reclaiming their African spirituality and identity and couldn’t be more different than Blood First. But, I am proud of Blood First because it isn't perpetuating violence, it is illustrating and critiquing it. It's gritty and raw like the environment it portrays.“ Blood First also boasts a powerful soundtrack by multiplatinum music producer Drumma Boy and original music by Project Pat, Big KRIT, Turk (of the Hot Boyz), 8 Ball, MJG, Akil Esoon and Emanuel “Manny” DeAnda (former lead singer of Pretty Ricky). As for what’s next for writer/director Najaa Young she says she’s developing a science fiction/fantasy television series about the after life and a film about a diamond heist that is set in Namibia and the United States.
Blood First (www.BloodFirstTheMovie.com)