BET Her has greenlit Black Girl, Erupted, a feature film from Vanessa Bell Calloway and executive producer Tressa Azarel Smallwood of MegaMind Media. This is the first feature film under the BET Her Presents: The Couch franchise.
The film which explores microaggressions and mental health stars Khalilah Joi, Vanessa E Williams, Rodney Van Johnson, Eric Roberts, Janeva Stoute, B.J. Britt, Kareem Grimes, Brely Evans, and Asia’h Epperson.
Written by Tiffany Yancey, Black Girl, Erupted follows Reina (Joi), a woman working at a law firm, facing microaggressions from co-workers and her boss Mr. Horowitz (Roberts). Reina’s parents (Williams, Johnson) prefer her younger sister, Reilly (Stoute), and remind Reina not to be the “angry black woman” at work, adding pressure to her already hectic life. Reina’s mental health begins to suffer as she struggles to be perfect and uphold her family’s image.
Black Girl, Erupted is part of The Couch, a series of short films about Black women managing mental health issues. Smallwood, who has overseen the production of all the short films produced for The Couch franchise, reunites with Calloway for this feature.
Smallwood said in a statement, “It has been my honor to work with BET Her to tell stories that matter, written, produced, and directed by Black women for all women. Reuniting with Vanessa Bell Calloway to produce the first feature for The Couch franchise speaks to the BET Her commitment: to change the narrative by cultivating Black women creatives and showcasing their work.”
Launched in 2019, BET Her Presents: The Couch spotlights women-centered short films and highlights the next generation of Black women filmmakers. Previous directors include Meagan Good, Naturi Tichina Arnold, and LisaRaye Mccoy.
“We are honored to be working with the amazing Vanessa Bell Calloway again on this powerful story filled with passion, grace, and humanity,” said Lorisa Bates, VP, Content Strategy, Co-Productions & Multiplatform at BET.
Deshawn Plair, Sade Oyinade, and Kristin Iris Johnson also serve as producers on Black Girl, Erupted, and production is currently underway in Los Angeles.