Chicago-born Clarence “Coodie” Simmons always knew that Kanye was special. It was just a feeling. Simmons also felt that he wanted to be the one to film West over the course of two decades. Now that feeling has garnered him and his creative partner, New Orleans native Chike Ozah (far left), a reported $30 million deal with Netflix for the film footage chronicling Kanye West’s life. Slated to debut in 2022, the multipart documentary will consist of rare footage. The duo’s production company, Creative Control, has directed three of West’s first music videos: “Through the Wire,” “Two Words,” and “Jesus Walks.” Shortly after coming to New York City, Simmons (left) connected with Ozah at MTV when Simmons took some footage to the studio for a show about emerging artists, including Kanye. Ozah had the know-how to implement motion graphics and use mixed media in videos to make his stand out from the pack. The team has also directed and produced ESPN’s film Benji (2012) and Netflix’s A Kid From Coney Island (2019).
Roach has created showstopping looks for some of the biggest names in Hollywood, including Zendaya, Lewis Hamilton, Tiffany Haddish, and Ariana Grande. By setting trends and putting emerging designers in the spotlight, especially those from the African diaspora, he is constantly redefining the role of a celebrity stylist. The outspoken and authentic personality also continues to break cultural boundaries and make strides for people of color in fashion and entertainment by calling out the injustices and challenges that BIPOC face within those industries. While he is best known for his work on the red carpet, Roach dabbled in costume design for the film Malcolm & Marie. He also served as the creative director for the Tommy x Zendaya collection by the actress and Tommy Hilfiger, which premiered at Paris Fashion Week in March 2019. The image architect is currently front and center as a judge on HBO Max’s Legendary, a voguing competition series that explores the world of ball culture.
Demetria L. Lucas is an award-winning author, blogger, life coach, and public speaker. Her love of the Black relationship genre started when she picked up her mother’s copy of Terry McMillan’s Waiting to Exhale. That book changed her life and her perspective on love and relationships. It made her want to write about relatable characters who talked about the same things she and her friends did. After that, her life in the love lane began to take flight. The foundation of her success began with her award-winning blog, A Belle in Brooklyn, then a column at Honey magazine, followed by a relationships editor position at Essence until 2011. Her Ratchet & Respectable podcast launched in 2019. She is also the author of books A Belle in Brooklyn: The Go-To Girl for Advice on Living Your Best Single Life and Don’t Waste Your Pretty: The Go-To Guide for Making Smarter Decisions in Life & Love. Don’t Waste Your Pretty was adapted into a TV One movie. She has been a guest speaker at numerous Ivy League universities.
The American television writer, director, and producer is best known as the showrunner for the supernatural series Lovecraft Country on HBO and as the creator and executive producer of the historical drama Underground. Her masterful work offers visually compelling, soul-stirring narratives that reimagine the Black experience. Green is reuniting with her Lovecraft Country collaborator Jurnee Smollett for a DC movie project featuring heroine Black Canary. The project, which is in early development at HBO Max, is a spin-off from the Warner Bros. 2020 DC movie Birds of Prey. Smollett assumes the role of Canary, and Green is set to write the script.