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Meet Kingslee Purcell of Blackout Cinema in East Hollywood

Today we’d like to introduce you to Kingslee Purcell.

Kingslee, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I hail from the mountains of North Carolina. I moved to LA as an actor and transitioned into filmmaking. I love movies. My most ideal day is going to a film festival and watching films by emerging talent and being transported into new worlds. It is natural that I launched a movie house where I could indulge my passion. I am the founder and owner of Blackout Cinema, a revival pop up movie house founded in 2014.

Has it been a smooth road?
It has not been a smooth road as there are many moments where you have dozens of RSVPs and only a handful of people show up. You had a chest full of optimism and when the event starts you feel deflated. There are also the doubters who question why do we focus on films by people of color. Well, when you look at the film roster at any revival movie house they typically do not reflect the tapestry of cultures in America. It is important for everyone to feel represented.

So, as you know, we’re impressed with Blackout Cinema – tell our readers more, for example what you’re most proud of and what sets you apart from others.
We are actively building community/shrinking this big city of Los Angeles through retro movies. We use these movies as a platform to bridge divides and to establish commonality.

I am the founder and owner of Blackout Cinema, a revival pop up movie house founded in 2014. Our mission is to build community in this big city through movies featuring people of color. The rub is after the movie we keep the dialogue going and talk about the movie’s spiritual and social significance. We’re more than a movie but an intimate experience.

Our membership on Facebook and Meetup has swelled to a combine 10,000 members as people enjoy being transported to 1984 and singing along to Purple Rain or 1991 and dressing up for House Party. We’ve also launched a short film series. Our initial series was a “woke” short fest where we screened five films dealing with issues in black and brown communities. We followed up that up with a love in color showcase where five filmmakers screened their short films on love in black and brown communities. Our next festival is Sci-Fi In Color, showcasing men and women of color telling stories in the sci-fi genre.

Let’s touch on your thoughts about our city – what do you like the most and least?
I absolutely love Los Angeles’ diversity and opportunity. This city continues to water my dreams. What I like least about our city is that it has no real memory of what makes it too special. Down goes the historic building and up the latest condo.

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Getting in touch: VoyageLA is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

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