Los Angeles — As DJ, composer, college professor, musician, producer, and now Academy Award nominee, Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson proves to be the quintessential multi-hyphenate with a deep love of storytelling.
“It took me a while to realize that in my quest to be creative, I am a natural storyteller,” Questlove said.
Watch his full interview with On The Red Carpet in the video player above.
He said the gist of his critically acclaimed documentary “Summer of Soul” stemmed from a desire to create content that a younger version of himself would have liked to see.
The film is about the largely forgotten Harlem Cultural Festival, which was filmed at Marcus Garvey Park (formerly Mount Morris Park) in Harlem, New York, during the summer of 1969. The event celebrated black history, culture, and fashion over the course of six years. weeks.
Koestloff said he noticed the juxtaposition in the narratives surrounding the Harlem and Woodstock Festival, which took place that same year. While the New York festival was framed as a life-changing experience, broadcasters rejected the Harlem Cultural Festival — even though it did include performances by music legends such as Stevie Wonder and Nina Simon and Sly. The Family Stone, Gladys Knight & points and more.
Koestloff said this is an example of “black-erased,” the rejection and/or repudiation of certain black-centric historical events.
“What happened to this movie is perhaps the best example,” he said. “Too often, with so many creatives by black and black artists, our stories are dismissed as not relevant or important enough and only important to us.”
Still, he’s proud that “Summer of Soul” emphasizes the importance of showing black joy, which is evident in the performers’ performances and the reactions of 300,000 members in Harlem at a time when New York City was sore.
“This moment was an important moment in history for a lot of people,” Koestloff said. “It was such a panacea that I will never again casually ignore anything I do.”
“Summer of Soul” is the first official project under the Onyx Collective brand for creators of color and underrepresented creators. it’s a Streaming now on Hulu.
The full list: 2022 Oscar Nominations
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