By: Zach Fulwood
Have you ever watched a movie with a bunch of Black actors in it and felt like despite the Black faces, it wasn’t a “Black movie”? Throughout the entirety of the movie, you saw nothing that accurately portrayed the Black experience as you knew it and yet, the movie was sold to you as a representation of Black people. That feeling is all too familiar to most of us but that’s about to change, thanks to KweliTV.
KweliTV (with Kweli, being a Swahili term for “truth”) is set to become the new go-to media streaming platform for independent Black filmmakers across the world. It’s goal is to present movies that depict authentic Black experiences through the lenses of Black people. No more stories about Black people being written by other people.
In an interview with thecrunch.com, KweliTV founder DeShuna Spencer said “For us, we’re offering an avenue for filmmakers of color to make money off of their work and be celebrated for the work they do.” She also made sure to reiterate that the main character of the film must be Black.
Currently, KweliTV has roughly 200 content titles on its platform but unlike Netflix, that 200 number is just fine because the goal was never to have an endless amount of options. Of the 200 content titles, 98 percent of them are official film festival selections, with all of the content being handpicked by KweliTV.
Officially launched late last year, KweliTV has over 2,000 subscribers with an end of the year goal of 30,000 subscribers. Annual membership costs $49.99 per year and $5.99 per month.
With Tyler Perry style movies dominating the Hollywood scene, it’s hard to find movies that accurately reflect Black people. KweliTV is on mission to make that search easier and I’m all for it.