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Meet Kay Barnes of Entangled Butterfly Entertainment in Burbank

Today we’d like to introduce you to Kay Barnes.

Kay, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I have been actively pursuing art since I was a young girl, deliberately and unceasingly writing in a journal at least once daily. I had my first work published in an anthology when I was ten years old. I willingly admit that I have been creating stories since I knew how to put ideas together in my mind and just have never stopped. There’s something about being able to express to others the humanity of what makes each of us unique that speaks to my very soul. As a young African- American girl who grew up in the less progressive areas of Alabama, I had many experiences that shaped my art. Therefore, my origin story as an artist began as an innate need to express the life that I was experiencing whether good or bad. After high school, I went off to the Army, which took me all over the world. I feel as though my life, as well as the lives of those I have come into contact with, has deeply contributed to my art and showcasing the human experience. I aspire to write, as well as, direct actors on an even larger scale than the indie films I have created thus far. Over the past four years, I have been working full time developing screenplays and honing my craft as a writer/director by working with industry professionals as well as attending The University of North Carolina School of the Arts Film School as an MFA Screenwriting student.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
*Throws head back to laugh* It has been anything EXCEPT easy. However, it has been worth it! I have had many moments of struggling with self doubt about whether I was good enough for this industry, or if people would even care about what I had to say. Yet, the moment I stopped waiting for a set at the table and decided to bring my chair instead is the moment my career started to go in a much better direction. There was one time I even had someone agree to mentor me and find that they only sought to exploit me. These are extremely hard lessons that I had to learn. But, these lessons have molded me into the hard working and driven artist that I am today. So, I’m grateful for those moments.

Please tell us about your company.
Entangled Butterfly Entertainment is an artist propelled production company that develops and produces independent film and television content across all spheres of narrative entertainment. Specifically, I am a writer/director. I am well versed in several genres. However, I thrive at doing action thrillers (which I assume comes from my 11 years in the Army), as well as psychological dramas. I regularly enlist in the talents of another extremely skilled artist from various specialties (camera, sound, etc.) to help bring stories to life. One thing that I am extremely proud of and that sets my business apart is that it is an artist propelled company, which for me is special because, although I am “the fearless leader,” it is mostly a collaborative environment where the whole creative team’s ideas or not only welcomed for input, but also highly respected.

So, what’s next? Any big plans?
My plan for the future is to tell amazing and world changing stories. I plan to shake things up a little bit maybe. Tell those types of stories that people try and tip toe around. Sometimes, people don’t know what they need until you give it to them. People need to change. Something different. I feel that I’m the person willing to do that.

Something major that I am looking forward to is being successful in the film industry WITH children. As the mother of three AMAZING children, I want to show the world that a woman can thrive in the film industry as a mother and a creative. I think that in this industry a lot of women feel that they have to choose the industry or their children. Therefore, while I do understand that there may be a give and take at times between the two, I want to be that person that proves that you can do both. If it was possible for me in the military as a female officer, then it should be possible in the world of film/television.

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Image Credit:
Headshot by Derrick Brady

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