New Black Filmmakers Awarded $1 Million in Grants by Comcast’s Black Experience on Xfinity on its Second Anniversary Thursday 04 May, 2023

Comcast NBCUniversal’s Black Experience on Xfinity has announced the winners of its $1 million Emerging Black Filmmaker grants, in celebration of its second anniversary and its commitment to supporting authentic Black content and creators. Among the ten winners are Atlanta filmmakers Jennifer Pessima, Quintin Arthur, and Jamal Ademola.

The winners were chosen based on their ability to tell engaging and culturally relevant stories about the African, African American, or other Afro subcultural experiences or perspectives through a feature film, documentary, or web series. The panel of judges included esteemed entertainment-industry executives and thought leaders such as Gil Robertson, President of AAFCA; filmmaker, producer, and author Lyn Sisson-Talbert; and Yvette Miley, Executive Vice President, NBCU News Group and NBCU Academy.

The winning submissions feature unique perspectives on the largest HBCU in America, the impact of Hip Hop legend Kangol and his group U.T.F.O., and a four-part series about how barbershops connect with Black culture.

About the Winning Films

Andre and Shaun Fequiere


The entertainment world idolized Hip Hop Legend and pioneer Kangol and his group U.T.F.O. While he helped to shape the foundation of hip hop, he was also a father to three boys. This docuseries is about Kangol’s life told from the perspective of his three sons.

Ashley and Brandon Deese

Our Blues Make US Gold

This is the story about the largest HBCU in the U.S, NC A&T State University and the impact its students and alumni have made in America. From education, to the close knit atmosphere, to changing the trajectory of families and creating a safe space for Black people to learn, grow, and thrive.

Eric D. Seales, Jr.

The Bike Vessel

This film centers around a father and son who are changing their lives through better health and exercise. Three years ago, Eric’s father, almost died after three open-heart surgeries. However, after 20 years, Seales makes a miraculous health recovery after discovering his love for bicycling. ​

Jamal Ademola 

“Ellas Vinieron de Las Nubes” They Came From the Clouds

A diverse community of Black-identified Mexicans share intimate experiences of life in La Costa Chica and Oaxaca, revealing connections in their endless struggle to be seen and live beautiful, unencumbered lives.

Jennifer Pessima

I am John Gabbana

In the documentary, John ‘Boonk’ Gabbana’s shares his story of being a survivor of over 21 years of abuse. John details his journey from a traumatic childhood to becoming a viral social media star, to being a victim of gun violence. He shares his rise and fall to fame.

Michael Emokhor

The Dream Chaser (Documentary) Full Feature

Addarren Ross “Lil Snupe” was murdered two months into a record deal with the label Dream Chasers. Despite this tragedy, his mark on the music industry has left others inspired. In this documentary, his family and friends reflect on his life, his art and share their thoughts on the bright future that once stood before him.

Moon Ferguson


Juju is a fantasy web series that follows three millennial women navigating the ebb and flow of modern-day adulthood, until one night changes everything for the three friends. A curse is broken, causing them to gain powers that were cut from their family bloodline. Now, they must learn to use their powers to protect themselves.

Quintin Arthur

Behind The Clippers (Four Part Docu-series)

This project is about how the Barbershop connects with the Black Culture and highlight’s the real thoughts and feelings of barbers across the world. Additionally, it talks about “hair” and gives a deep analysis of how haircuts speak to the soul.

Stefanie Philpott

Shoutout 2 My Therapist

This 5-part web series is a Dramedy about a Black woman in her early 30’s who finds herself at a crossroads after quitting her job and deciding to attend therapy for the first time. During her sessions, she learns more about herself and her personal relationships.

Tari Robinson

The Voicemail

The Voicemail is a thriller about four young women who are enjoying wine and good conversation until a strange voicemail derails their fun. Soon after, the ladies find themselves dealing with the ramifications of the eerie voicemail.

Visit to view the filmmaker bios and to learn more about the jury panel.

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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