Some features to look forward to:
1.) "PATRICK'S POP UP(DATES)" will feature stories from pop culture, music, theater, fashion, and the entertainment industry at large.
2.) "The Life of Riley" will also introduce a "take-a-look-at-your-life" section (READ: sort of an advice column), where I will help readers come up with their own questions and answers around what "ways of being" are working (or not working) to have them acheive their respective goals and live their best lives. This section is called "WHO YOU BE?".
3.) Additonally, there will be a free-flowing, organic section called "TESTIFY" from which I will pull from my own life's journey to share and hopefully inspire. Some of the fare may be new musings and experiences. Other times, I may pull from my journals and past sharings to shed light on some uncomfortable truths that I've experienced and that may perhaps play a role in healing someone else's wounds as the real-life experience did for me. From my experience of covering 9/11 as a freelance journalist to courageously coming out (as gay) to my family, "TESTIFY" promises to move those who choose to read it.
4.) And a section titled "PR" (like my initials, but also like "public relations") will include press clips from any coverage I get.
FAMU 2016 William Hearst Visiting Professional
I have to SHOUT OUT WENDY WILLIAMS for taking time out of her busy schedule (in preps for NEW SEASON: now back as of this week) to say HI and offer words of WISDOM to two of my FAMU mentees: Alexis Lockhart and Steven Byrd-Pitts – both Senior, Public Relations Majors at FAMU’s School of Journalism and Graphic Communications. They are in town for NYC Fashion Week…and I am hosting them (and curating opportunities) for these #HBCUScholars while they are in town. It’s been quite a whirlwind of fashion shows...and go-and-come-sees! LOL!Plus, LIFE OF RILEY plucked from our rolodex to create special moments and meetings for the kids – including WENDY and several others who Alexis and Steven got to see and/or contact during (and even after) their time here - shaping their own rolodexes to help carve out their respective career starts. The list is endless of folks who referred; responded; relayed...but I'm going to try to THANK a few who went above and beyond: supermodel Veronica Webb; Miss Jessie's Co-Founder, CEO, and Creative Director Miko Branch; Emmy-award-winning correspondent at GMA, Mara Schiavocampo; Tony-award-winning producer Randolph Sturrup (FAMU grad and Executive Producer of ASPiRE TV's new docu-series about 6 HBCU alums living in NYC - including my nephew Herman Riley III, rep'ing for our alma mater Morehouse); Fashion/Theater/Event Producer Carl Nelson ("Drums Along The Hudson"); international model and Beyonce leading man from the video “Irreplaceable”, Bobby Roache; Creative Director Mykel Cortez Smith; Fashion producer/talent representative Ron Smith; celebrity stylist June Ambrose (who was at the TOP of Alexis and Steven's WISH-LIST); designer Edwing D’Angelo (and his publicist Michelle Pascal); Wendy's amazing stylist Memsor (who also let the kids follow him to a Fashion Week Presentation); entertainment publicists Theo Perry, Morehouse brother Trevor Julien (who arranged for Basketball Wives Laura Govan to share her style tips with the FAMU scholars), and Tagan Lee & Associates' Tagan Lee; digital diva Marcia Cole; NBCBLK’s Amber Payne; entertainment journalist Alicia Quarles; New York Times’ Nikita Stewart Henderson; and many more! Though I’m a proud Morehouse Man, I consider it a total honor that Dean of Florida A&M University’s School of Journalism and Graphic Communications, Dr. Ann Wead Kimbrough, has added me to its impressive roster of 2016 William Hearst Visiting Professionals. I am third in a series of outstanding media professionals who bring value to the rich teaching within FAMU’s SJGC.This is an encore partnership with FAMU's SJGC. I was invited to Keynote its NABJ Multimedia Short Course a couple of years ago. Thanks young folks...and Dean Kimbrough!
Boys & Girls Clubs of America and Disney
So LIFE OF RILEY knew and teased, but now I can SCREAM IT FROM THE RAFTERS - especially now that the artwork is soon to be released: my FAV NEPHEW Herman Lee Riley III is a cast-mate in docu-series THE GRADUATES NYC – a new show that will chronicle the NYC LIVING of HBCU ALUMS in the MILLENNIAL SET! COMING THIS FALL!!!! My nephew hails from our alma mater Morehouse College while each of the other cast members are alums of other #HBCUs. The digital show will also air on ASPIRE during the halftime of the live HBCU football games on ASPiRE. Check out ASPIRE.TV for episodes and more information! CONGRATS NOOT! SO PROUD! Here’s a PREVIEW: http://www.aspire.tv/videos/the-graduates-new-series-preview/. Esteemed Broadway producer Randolph Sturrup ("A Streetcar Named Desire", "The Trip to Bountiful" and "Eclipsed") and seasoned TV News exec Keith Michael Brown are producing this project along with Al Roker Productions. So, these kids are in great hands! Special THANKS to Herman and Randolph for making time for my #HBCUscholars from #FAMU: Alexis Lockhart and Steven Michael Byrd-Pitts.
#LIFEOFRILEY #PETTYCASHNYC #HERMANLRILEYIII #HLRIII #THEGRADUATES #ASPIRE #ASPIRETV Coming this Fall... Stay tuned! #ASPiRE #HBCUpride #MorehouseCollege
THIS IS LOVING
Shout out to Tagan Lee & Associates who always make sure LIFE OF RILEY is IN THE HOUSE for AMAZING OPPORTUNITIES! Was a panelist alongside journalist and friend Alicia Quarles for a Q&A that was moderated by NBCBLK's Amber Payne for an INVITATION ONLY influencer/tastemaker screening of Focus Features film LOVING, which comes out in November!
This much-buzzed about film tells the story of Loving v. Virginia, a Supreme Court decision that makes it legal to marry between races. One of my most recent assignments for "Oprah: Where Are They Now?" captured Richard Pryor's daughter Rain Pryor - referencing her parents' marriage (Her mother is a white Jewish woman) and what that was like four years after the ruling:
http://www.wherearetheynow.buzz/richard-pryors-daughter-describes-the-racism-her-family-endured. I'm excited one of my FAMU mentees Steven Byrd Pitts joined me for the special occasion in Tribeca as well as MISS JESSIE's Co-Founder, CEO, and Creative Director Miko Branch.
ABOUT THE FILM LOVING: From acclaimed writer/director Jeff Nichols, Loving celebrates the real-life courage and commitment of an interracial couple, Richard and Mildred Loving (portrayed by Joel Edgerton and Ruth Negga), who married and then spent the next nine years fighting for the right to live as a family in their hometown. Their civil rights case, Loving v. Virginia, went all the way to the Supreme Court, which in 1967 reaffirmed the very foundation of the right to marry - and their love story has become an inspiration to couples ever since. Loving will open form Focus Features in theaters in select cities on November 4, and will expand across the country later in November.
Watch the trailer for LOVING
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So excited that Creative Director and friend Mykel C. Smith invited my FAMU mentee Steven Michael Byrd-Pitts out to celebrate close out of Fashion Week…and the celebration of the September 2016 Style Issue #21 of W42ST. FAMU’s own Kendra Foster – Grammy-award-winning singer songwriter – performed brilliantly! Ant has adored her music all Summer 2016! And so nice to connect two RATTLERS! Steven and Kendra had a LOVE FEST over their college in common! Cloak & Dagger brought the music…and it was great to wrap a wonderful week! Ant, Steven, and I capped night off with some KARAOKE at RADIO STAR before calling it a night! I’ll be next working with these students on managing their follow ups – so they can stay engaged with the many mentors they met and so they can begin to shape up steps towards starting their post-graduate careers. THANKS TO ALL who were so kind to the young #HBCUscholars from #FAMU #SJGC.
STEPS at URBAN WORLD FILM FESTIVAL
The Shaquille-O’neal/Michael Baumgartner Executive-Produced Steps screened at Newark International Film Festival to an enthusiastic audience! Thanks everyone for all your love and support of STEPS...and my character "Rudy", my film debut.Next up: UrbanWorld Film Festival.COME WITNESS the MAGIC!
Get tickets: http://www.urbanworld.org/2016/steps (Scroll to bottom of page) Like our Page on facebook StepsUrbanworld Film Festival
Use our Hashtags
#UW20. http://newarkiff.com/. $10.00. #stepsthemovie.info www.stepsthemovie.info
XSCAPE PUERTO RICO 2017
...as I update LIFE OF RILEY, I'm watching Monifah Carter and the R&B Divas: Atlanta on TV One’s SUNDAY Marathon, I’m reminded to remind you to join Monifah Carter, more, and me for my new Memorial Day Weekend tradition: Xscape Puerto Rico 2017 - LGBT Arts & Culture Music Festival!
When: May 26 - 29, 2017
Host Resort: Grand Wyndham Resort & Spa (All Inclusive)
Celebrity Ambassadors, Live Performances, Workshops, Vanguard Awards, Pool Party & Fashion Show, Excursions and so much more!!
P.S. Monifah and I are gonna have to find a microphone:
ALL STAR KARAOKE SIZZLE W/MONIFAH:https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=10152123074463737&set=vb.662073736&type=3&theater
KEKE WYATT: https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=10152177726443737&set=vb.662073736&type=3&theater
KEKE WYATT & HOST: https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=10152166354908737&set=vb.662073736&type=3&theater
ALL STAR KARAOKE SIZZLE W/MONIFAH “Something to Talk About”:https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=10152123074463737&set=vb.662073736&type=3&theater
MONIFAH “One Moment”: https://youtu.be/v4iPJUhdnZ4
MONIFAH “Getting in the Way”:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a_2xHo2iRNQ
MONIFAH & PATRICK “Best of My Love”:https://www.facebook.com/patrick.l.riley/videos/10153006964663737/?l=5788490014611877465
MONIFAH “Our Love” – PART 1:
MONIFAH “OUR LOVE” – PART 2:
Motown May's Grand Finale WINNER at "Billie's Black Presents All Star Karaoke with Patrick L. Riley" is one of my nearest and dearest brother friends. Since his win got him on the Motown the Musical on Broadway stage, I have to see him everywhere he performs. So, Fashion Week weekend, we made time to see him at Silvana in Harlem. HUSAIN ROCKS - including his first single "Summer Rain".
AN EARLY THANKSGIVING
An early Thanksgiving welcoming Ant back to NYC was most welcomed by him as it has been a difficult summer, shaken life-changingly with the loss of his amazing dad. We are so grateful to our New York City fam who stem from our roots in Savannah and Denver; school daze; NABJ; and LIFE! We shout out Mario, Nikita, Brian, Ern, and Lamoh for this meal, prepared in LOVE and with all of the ingredients to lift Ant's and my spirits up! MISSION ACCOMPLISHED! #SoBlessed #Ourcurrentsituation
So LIFE OF RILEY knew and teased, but now I can SCREAM IT FROM THE RAFTERS: my FAV NEPHEW Herman Lee Riley III is a REALITY TV cast-mate on THE GRADUATES – a new series that chronicles the NYC LIVING of HBCU ALUMS in the MILLENNIAL SET! My nephew hails from our alma mater Morehouse College while each of the other cast members are alums of other #HBCUs. The digital show will also air on ASPIRE during the halftime of the live HBCU football games on ASPiRE. Check out ASPIRE.TV for episodes and more information! CONGRATS NOOT! SO PROUD! Here’s a PREVIEW: http://www.aspire.tv/videos/the-graduates-new-series-preview/. Esteemed Broadway producer Randolph Sturrup (“A Street Car Named Desire”; "The Trip to Bountiful"; and Eclipsed") and seasoned TV News exec Keith Michael Brown are producing this project along with Al Roker Entertainment. So, these kids are in good hands! #LIFEOFRILEY #PETTYCASHNYC #HERMANLRILEYIII #HLRIII #THEGRADUATES #ASPIRE #ASPIRETV
The Shaquille O’Neal and Michael Baumgartner Executive Produced film (in which I have a little part as Rudy), STEPS, screened for the first time to 1,100 invited guests to the Landmark Loews Theater on November 19, 2015 (my birthday): helped present premiere night last November in Jersey City: http://thelifeofriley.squarespace.com.rilys-blog/2015/11/28/doctor-sister.html. Well, now you can BE INSPIRED with scheduled screenings at UrbanWorld Film Festival which takes place in NYC September 21 through 25. And prior to #UWFF2016, the much-buzzed-about project written by Eddie Harris, will screen at Newark International Film Festival on Saturday, September 10, 2016 from 6-7:30 pm on Screen3 at CityPlex 12 on 360 Springfield Avenue in Newark, NJ 07103. TICKETS CAN ONLY BE PURCHASED ONLINEwww.newarkiff.com SOCIAL MEDIA: @newarkiff. $10. #stepsthemovie.info #newarkiff SEE THE TRAILER http://Vimeo.com/142798556. BIG THANKS to THOSE who SUPPORTED STEPS in ATLANTA for The Peachtree Village International Film Festival. And as always, THANKS FOR YOUR SUPPORT! URBAN WORLD FILM FESTIVAL INFO: http://www.urbanworld.org/2016/steps. It’s taken a village to make this film happen – including the amazing writer/producer EDDIE HARRIS who penned and ran all of production for STEPS; Producer and Casting Director Penwah who stayed on me to audition and stayed on the filmmakers to cast me; LIFE OF RILEY partner and ALL STAR KARAOKE sponsor, MISS JESSIE’s, who donated MISS JESSIE's bags to the Premiere event in November.STEPS is Co-Directed by the SPECTACULAR Jay Rodriguez and Rock Davis. Denzel Washington’s wife Pauletta and a host of others comprise this most wonderful cast! For more information on the cast and the amazing crew, click here: http://www.stepsthemovie.info/. In STEPS, my RUDY has big heart...and will go down as my feature film debut. My partner Anthony Harper - Events Manager at MIST Harlem - recently hosted a tastemaker screening of STEPS that many of my NYC industry fam got to attend: http://thelifeofriley.squarespace.com/rilys-blog/2016/4/18/rest-in-prince.html.#STEPSTHEMOVIE#SHAQUILLEONEAL
Y’all know how much LIFE OF RILEY loves some SIDRA SMITH, NAACP Image Award-winning producer for FREE ANGELA AND ALL POLITICAL PRISONERS, the documentary: http://thelifeofriley.squarespace.com/rilys-blog/2013/4/4/freedom-and-convergence.html. Well, how much prouder am I supposed to be with her latest good news? I guess will have to suffice until Oscar night 2018! LOL! My SIDRA SMITH is coming board to produce an authorized biopic of Angela Davis through Codeblack – Lionsgate – adapted from the doc: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MWo9CMe91wE. Here’s the release that tells it all: http://shadowandact.com/2016/08/09/a-second-angela-davis-film-is-in-development-from-codeblack-producer-of-fruitvale-station-dope/. I’m so proud of you, SID! You know you have my support! #FREEANGELA #NAACP #IMAGEAWARDS #SIDRASMITH
Tues 8 9 16 INVITE TO SUPPORT Olympic Pride American Prejudice by Deborah Riley Draper and Blair Underwood
RIO and THE OLYMPICS are on the minds of many this week!
I’m always excited to run into OLYMPIC legends – like a recent run-in with Olympic legend Carl Lewis.
Well, LIFE OF RILEY is excited to invite you to join us NEXT TUESDAY in New York City for a documentary on the 18 Black Olympians of the 1936 Games, “Olympic Pride, American Prejudice” from Director Deborah Riley Draper (Versailles “73: American Runway Revolution) and Narrator/Executive Producer Blair Underwood.
PLEASE COME JOIN LIFE OF RILEY Tuesday, August 9th for the 7p SCREENING. On this night, you get a BONUS with your purchased ticket: a post-show interview that I will conduct via Skype with Writer/Director Deborah Riley Draper. Ticket info: https://www.cinemavillage.com/Now-Playing/olympic-pride-american-prejudice.html
Riley Draper is not a relative, but a Savannah home-girl who also graduated from the same high school as me: Windsor Forest High School. In fact, my dear friend from high school and my Spelman sister Tandi Reddick – Associate Producer on this project – is the one who hipped me to this masterpiece: www.tandireddick.com! So, I just had to help get the word out on it!
Moreover, in my role as Brand Ambassador at Miss Jessie’s, Co-Founder, CEO, and Creative Director Miko Branch is donating bags for the NYC Theatrical Release’s Opening Night(s) this Friday, August 5th and Saturday, August 6th (Deborah and Blair are scheduled to be in attendance). Ticket info: https://www.cinemavillage.com/Now-Playing/olympic-pride-american-prejudice.html
The film enjoyed a sold-out world premiere as an official selection in the documentary category at the Los Angeles Film Festival and is also an official selection at the 2016 Traverse City Film Festival. The film will open in 10 additional cities in September.
Olympic Pride, American Prejudice follows 18 African Americans, 16 men and two women, who defied Jim Crow and Adolf Hitler to win hearts and medals at the 1936 Summer Olympic Games. While the world is familiar with Jesse Owens' story, this film tells the largely unknown story of the 17 other black Olympians. Though their untold stories faded into obscurity, their presence on the world stage in 1936 remains a seminal precursor to the modern American Civil Rights Movement and the struggle for equality in sports.
"Olympic Pride, American Prejudice is a deeply inspiring and emotional film that examines race, sports and implicit bias during the 1930s through the eyes and voices of 18 young Black Olympians, who laid the groundwork for so many movements,” said Deborah Riley Draper, writer/director. “Their experiences are as relevant today as they were 80 years ago.”
The film weaves rarely seen archival footage and photos with interviews of Carl Lewis, Isiah Thomas, Anita DeFrantz, Ambassador Andrew Young and Lonnie Bunch III, among others, including the families of the 1936 Black Olympians, German 1936 Olympics spectators and sports historians.
“Olympic Pride, American Prejudice is a film for all ages and for the ages,” says Blair Underwood, the film’s narrator and executive producer. “Generations to come will be inspired by the perseverance, courage and patriotism of these 18 African American athletes who faced Jim Crow America and Nazi Germany during Berlin’s 1936 Olympics. I am honored and proud to play but a small role in singing their praises.”
View the Trailer for the film at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=97Icc35DJPM
79 minutes * unrated * USA/Germany* 2016 * www.1936olympicsmovie.com
22 East 12th St.
New York, NY 10003
Monica Film Center
1332 2nd St.
Santa Monica, CA 90401
Ticket info: http://www.laemmle.com/films/41067
ABOUT COFFEE BLUFF PICTURES: Coffee Bluff Pictures is an Atlanta-based independent film venture created to develop, produce and distribute compelling stories that shed light on the life and stories of the under-represented.
ABOUT DEBORAH RILEY DRAPER
Deborah Riley Draper is a filmmaker, advertising executive and a Film Independent Documentary Lab Fellow. Riley Draper was named to Variety Magazine’s “2016 Top Ten Documakers to Watch.” Her debut film, “Versailles ‘73: American Runway Revolution,” received acclaim from critics and fans alike, including The New York Times, LA Times and Harper’s Bazaar. She is a member of Film Fatales and resides in Atlanta, Ga.
OPAP film website: www.1936OlympicsMovie.com