The complicated man but no one understands him but his woman is back! Who am I talkin’ about? Well I am talking about Shaft! Don’t tell me to shut my mouth yet, as I gotta share the Shaft (2019) themed movie screening in Atlanta and an exclusive interview with director Tim Story! Let me get into this amazing screening first!

The Shaft (2019) movie screening was amazing as it was held at the historical Atlanta vintage Plaza Theater. It was perfect as this original blackplotation film has been expanded for 4 decades going strong since the original Shaft in 1971. Shaft Bad Mutha is the 5th installment of this movie legacy series and the screening made sure to keep some of that retro flair of the original with 1971 Chevy Chevelle SS parked right in front of the theater, and this car makes it in the 2019 film as well. The car is as important to the Shaft franchise so I definitely had to pose in front of it!

I sat next to Issac Hayes III, son of the legendary Issac Hayes who is the musician who composed the original “Shaft” theme song!

During the screening I surprisingly sat next to Issac Hayes III. His father is a big part of the Shaft brand as the Shaft theme song is one of the most recognized movie themes in the world. This movie was super hilarious him and I were laughing together! My dad is a huge fan of the original Shaft because it was his era, and he also still has lots of Issac Hayes II vinyl music so I am sure my father would appreciate that I sat next to his son.


Tim Story (Think Like a ManRide Along) is an amazing director and has a wonderful portfolio and mix of movies and music videos alike. I talked briefly with him on his work directing Shaft (2019) and being apart of a legacy movie franchise.

Shaft is such a legacy film franchise, how did it feel to be a director of it for the first time and how do you think the new generation will react to the expansion of Shaft?

Tim Story: First I felt honor, to be able to bring this to the screen. Its a certain about of respect and humbleness that you get because I knew so much of it comes before me, I’ve been given this gift I have to take care of. Felt a lot of responsibility in a good way.

When speaking of the young generation, he is what was fun about making the movie. I found that with the script given to me by Kenya Barris (blackish), there was this generation conflict that was at the heart of it. I really hope millennial, young people go see this movie that they will see a diaglog of an older iconic character. I am looking forward to hearing what people think about it and hope they enjoy it as much as I had fun making it. 

There is actually 3 generations of Shafts in this film. How was it working with Richard Roundtree (Original John Shaft Sr.), Samuel L. Jackson (John Shaft Jr.) and Jessie T. Usher (John “JJ” Shaft III)?

TS: It was so much fun! First you got Sam Jackson in the center of it. He is so good at what he does he is at the top of the game. Sam just commands a certain level of respect, he is so good at playing this character, he knows exactly what should happen and he is just so much fun. Then you have Richard Roundtree who brings this regal royalty to the screen. He is actually playing his character he made famous, as he is the reason I am there with all three of the guys. 

Then we bring the new blood, which is Jessie T. Usher who just brings a new stab at was it was like to be a Shaft. I had a lot of fun having him grow up on screen basically becoming cool as the movie went down. Having the three generations its not done often, but I am honored and humbled to have been able to put them all on screen together and the fact that they had to listen to what I had to say. 

JJ the newest Shaft isn’t like his predecessors as far as personality goes. He is a lot more tamed, suburban, collegiate, well-rounded and polite. Was that intentional and what was the ideology of fitting JJ’s characters traits into the next generation of Shaft? 

TS: JJ doesn’t become Shaft, but he comes closer to his dad and grandad. It was intentional, in order to make the drama of this story work that he would have to start from the opposite end of the room so to speak in order for them to come together and learn to respect one another’s viewpoint. It was very intentional, especially with JJ and Sam L.Jackson’ character of Shaft see them draw to each other for dramatic purposes.

Both Samuel L. Jackson and Richard Roundtree’s character of Shaft both didn’t use technology to do their jobs. How important was it to include more technology in this film and fit it into the world of Shaft and detective work?

TS: It was very important. I think where this franchise can go and what it needed to be for this film was to bring in this new style of detective work. Having cameras, audio equipment and just with all of this access to technology at our fingertips, it only made sense to have Shaft (who is considered to be one of the greatest detectives in film history) that he would have access to it. But I could never see Samuel L. Jackson or Richard Roundtree’s Shaft see them going all the way there, but JJ’s Shaft had a perfect in for him to utilize it in his character because of his youth.

What do you hope audience members will get out of this new version of Shaft? 

TS: What I hope will get out of it, without disrespecting what Shaft [legacy] is we had a lot of fun. In my movies, I like to give people reasons to laugh and think, and I want people to be entertained and I love to draw from the characters, especially iconic ones humor but still keep it respectable!

About Shaft (2019)

The most badass private detective ever to walk the streets. The epitome of cool.  Shaft is back on the big screen. Right on!

New Line Cinema’s action comedy “Shaft” was directed by Tim Story (the “Ride Along” and “Think Like a Man” franchises). The film stars Oscar nominee Samuel L. Jackson (“Pulp Fiction,” “Glass,” “Captain Marvel”), Jessie T. Usher (“Independence Day: Resurgence,” “Almost Christmas”), Regina Hall (“Girls Trip,” “Little”), Alexandra Shipp (“X-Men: Apocalypse,” “Love, Simon”), Matt Lauria (TV’s “Kingdom,” “Friday Night Lights”), Titus Welliver (“Argo,” TV’s “Bosch”), Cliff “Method Man” Smith (“Peppermint,” “Trainwreck”), and Richard Roundtree, the original John Shaft.

JJ, aka John Shaft Jr. (Usher), may be a cyber security expert with a degree from MIT, but to uncover the truth behind his best friend’s untimely death, he needs an education only his dad can provide.  Absent throughout JJ’s youth, the legendary locked-and-loaded John Shaft (Jackson) agrees to help his progeny navigate Harlem’s heroin-infested underbelly.  And while JJ’s own FBI analyst’s badge may clash with his dad’s trademark leather duster, there’s no denying family. Besides, Shaft’s got an agenda of his own, and a score to settle that’s professional and personal.

The film was produced by John Davis (“Game Night,” “Joy”) under his Davis Entertainment banner.  Kenya Barris (“Girls Trip,” TV’s “Black-ish”) & Alex Barnow (TV’s “The Goldbergs”) wrote the screenplay, based upon the character John Shaft from the novel by Ernest Tidyman. Richard Brener, Josh Mack, Tim Story, Ira Napoliello, Kenya Barris, and Marc S. Fischer served as executive producers.

Story’s behind-the-scenes creative team included director of photography Larry Blanford (“Ride Along,” “Tag”), production designer Wynn Thomas (“Hidden Figures”), editor Peter S. Elliot (“Ride Along 2”), and costume designer Olivia Miles (“Ride Along 2”). The music is by Christopher Lennertz (“Nobody’s Fool,” “Pitch Perfect 3”). Dave Jordan and Trygge Toven served as music supervisors. – via Warner Bros.

Shaft (2019) is now playing in theaters.

About the Blogger - Kiwi the Beauty

Kiwi is the free spirited blogger and content creator of As a digital influencer, she produces creative inspiration around beauty, lifestyle, media and travel leisure. Her life mantra is to make manifesting fun! When she’s not blogging, she is eating trendy hipster food, carrying crystals, making it rain at her local farmer's market and binge brunching. Follow her on her blog and social media at + @kiwithebeauty

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