Saturday, June 14, 2014

How one Moroccan woman made it in Hollywood

Sanaa Hamri Moroccan music video film director Saudi Arabia blog
I was scrolling through Buzzfeed as one does, and I came across an article listing Nicki Minaj's top music videos. Coming in at number one was her song "Super Bass" and I was surprised to see that not only was it directed by a woman, but by a woman from the Middle East.
(Of course women can be directors, but the percentage of female directors in Hollywood is rather low and the percentage of women of colour is even lower.) Minaj’s hit “Super Bass” (which has over 400 million hits on YouTube!) was directed by Sanaa Hamri, who's a Moroccan American music video and film director.

Her bio is super interesting. She was born to an American mother and a Moroccan father (the famous painter Mohammed Hamri) in the city of Tangier in Morocco. She said that in her native country, she saw men all around her in public, in cafes, in shops and on the street, and thought that she could do what they were doing as well. So she went and got a scholarship to Sarah Lawrence College in the States where she studied drama before pursuing acting. A turn as a production assistant at a post production company introduced her to Malik Sayeed, who then introduced her to Mariah Carey. It was the famous singer, songwriter who pushed her to start directing. From there it was music videos with Jay-Z, Prince, and Mary J. Blige just to name a few, to TV series like Desperate Housewives, and finally feature films like The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants and Something New. You go girl! In Mariah's words, you're so much better than these old white men…

Have you seen Hamri’s music videos, TV shows, or movies (you probably have)? What do you think? Let me know in the comments section below or on my Facebook page or on Twitter!

No comments:

Post a Comment