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IF BEALE STREET COULD TALK Q&A with Barry Jenkins & Regina King

If Beale Street Could Talk

“One of the great and most necessary storytellers of our time,” managing editor at Fandango and Q&A moderator Erik Davis says of Barry Jenkins.

After the resounding success of MOONLIGHT and its Academy Awards Best Picture win, the bar was high for IF BEALE STREET COULD TALK, and it most definitely does not disappoint. This film, both rapturous and heart-wrenching, has received 3 Golden Globe nominations including Best Motion Picture – Drama, and is touting a 94% fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Rolling Stone raves, “Barry Jenkins creates one of the year’s 10 best films by celebrating black love and a human connection that can raise you up and move you to tears. Regina King’s performance should finally get her the Oscar she’s deserved for years.”

“Barry Jenkins channels all of James Baldwin’s lyricism and anger into a story of love and injustice that burns with a gentle flame, occasionally blazing into a white heat,” says TimeOut. Jenkins says that Baldwin’s work “meant everything” to him. Here, he discusses what it was like to adapt the novel into a film:

“Family is a theme outside and inside the film,” says Regina King. The  Golden Globe nominated actress, whose previous credits include American Crime, Ray and Seven Seconds, says that it was the Baldwin/Jenkins combination that initially attracted her to the project. “I felt the love story,” she states, “I felt like Barry’s adaptation was spot on… the love story that takes place around the lovers… that’s what was interesting and made me want to be a part of it.”

Jenkins says that love stories have to be grounded in social reality to . Like Chiron and Kevin in MOONLIGHT, Tish and Fonny in BEALE STREET are held back from some elements of their love story because of their social reality. Here, Jenkins elaborates on the parallels in the two films:

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About the film:

Academy Award winning director Barry Jenkins (MOONLIGHT) brings to life IF BEALE STREET COULD TALK, based on the acclaimed novel by James Baldwin. It follows a Harlem woman whose fiance is unjustly imprisoned, who sets out to clear his name and prove his innocence. Starring KiKi Layne, Stephan James, Colman Domingo, Regina King and Brian Tyree Henry.

View the trailer:

Where to see it:

IF BEALE STREET COULD TALK is now playing at Angelika New York, and opens 12/25 at Angelika Mosaic, Angelika Dallas and Angelika Plano, and opens 1/4 at Angelika Carmel Mountain.