I know it’s almost awards season, but it’s never too early to keep our eyes on the projects you’ll hear running for the next awards. Coming out of the Sundance Film Festival, everyone was talking about the movie A thousand and one. In his feature directorial debut, AV Rockwell helms the story of Inez, Teyana Taylor, an incredible woman who took her son back from the foster care system, trying to give them a fresh start. The Sundance Grand Jury Prize winner is a moving story of a complex black woman who does her best to survive in a world that doesn’t usually care about her needs and wants. Rockwell spoke root about the knowledge of the film and how the story of Inez is received.
Sundance can be unpredictable, so it’s surprising to see such a uniquely Black story receive an accolade usually reserved for indie favorites. As a director, she insists that she and the entire team put all their effort into the work.
“It was really beautiful. The celebration of this film, the release and the way it has been received so far, is really a triumphant moment. Not only for me as a filmmaker with a debut film, for everyone, the whole cast and crew,” Rockwell told root. “All of them committed themselves so deeply to this idea and gave a lot of themselves in it. It is a beautiful moment for all of us to celebrate. It was truly magical. The path of this film is illuminated by many experiences. It seemed to me different, but now also the world is really showing them. Recognizing their story, defending it, celebrating it and embracing it.
As I saw through this painfully soon the rewards of the seasonOur stories — especially those centered around black women — don’t get the attention they deserve. There is always another story that needs to be highlighted. Rockwell sees success and reception A thousand and one that our arguments may still be known by the audience.
“I had no idea if this was primarily a Black woman’s story, if people were going to see it, see us and see what I had to say about us. That kind of adds to how special I feel this moment is, because they don’t just see me, but they see us collectively,” he said. “This is the story that I wanted to tell, and that’s what I was hoping people would finally know about, finally having it for us. I am really appreciative of all the knowledge and also the conversations that are inspired by what people say after experiencing the film”.
It is very difficult to get your first film. It’s 100 times harder when you’re a Black woman telling the story of a complicated Black mother. Just that Rockwell got this film across the finish line is a spectacular feat. It is appreciative of how the other partners behind the film supported him throughout the process.
“Making the first movie, in general. Finding the right collaborators, the people who helped you find this movie and working on a small budget to make it. It’s ‘only having so many resources,'” Rockwell said. was something that is intrinsically identified on the surface, yet it noted the abundance on a human level. A story about two people, fighting for love, fighting for family and for the things that we all universally desire.”
While he still has a lot of work to do with his debut, Rockwell is definitely thinking about the future and where he’s going next.
“I’m already thinking about what I want to do next. I just started to develop other ideas and start the process of writing for ideas. I’m so excited to start my journey as a filmmaker officially, but also on TV,” he said. “It’s an amazing space that I want to open up and give me a bigger platform so that I can tell some stories that I can’t wait to tell.”
A thousand and one opens in theaters March 31.