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A Must See

Life Essentials with Ruby Dee Documentary To Air On Centric

Life’s Essentials with Ruby Dee finally has a release date, this Sunday, January 17, at 3:00 p.m. EST on Centric. And what a fitting time for it be released, as this past year has been a constant battle with racial injustices in our country currently.

This documentary reminds us of a time when artists used their platforms for more than endorsements, but spoke up about real issues that plagued their communities. When caring about your community was more important than appealing to the white gaze or worrying about how to be politically correct to maintain their “popularity” , Ruby Dee (A Raisin In The Sun) and Ossie Davis weren’t afraid to speak up and out.

Two years before Ruby passed in 2014, her grandson,  Muta’ Ali Muhammad announced a kickstarter campaign to help produce and release a documentary about his grandparents’ lives, activism, and love.

The press release describes the film;

For more than a half century, audiences have been mesmerized by the love story between Hollywood legends Ossie Davis & Ruby Dee. Now, their grandson Muta’Ali unearths the foundation of this unbreakable bond in the documentary “Life’s Essentials with Ruby Dee,” which premieres on Centric TV Sunday, January 17, 2016 at 3 pm. Through intimate conversations with the award-winning actress, playwright and activist, Muta’Ali not only discovers intimate details about his grandparents’ relationship, but also questions his ability to carry on the very dynasty that gave him life. In the film, the director breaks the wall between himself and his subject to ask heartfelt questions of his grandmother. “How do you stay faithful? And if I can’t see myself doing that, how can I honestly get married knowing that I could eventually break the heart of the woman I love?”

“I can’t say I didn’t do anything to make Ossie unhappy…” Ms. Dee states as she carefully reveals the core commitment made between her and Mr. Davis. Her answer only sparked more questions for Muta’Ali, provoking him to dig deeper into the family archives and the history that chronicles their remarkable journey as trailblazers in the arts community and activists in the Civil Rights Movement. Muta’Ali also shares exclusive video footage, family photos and memorabilia. In addition, a host of celebrity friends like Alan Alda, Angela Bassett, Harry Belafonte, Danny Glover, Hill Harper, Samuel Jackson, Spike Lee, S. Epatha Merkerson, Phylicia Rashad, Glynn Turman, Dr. Cornel West, Sonia Sanchez and Malik Yoba share eyewitness accounts of this American legacy.

Check out the trailer for the feature-length documentary below and be sure to check your local listings to catch Life’s Essentials with Ruby Dee this Sunday, January 17, at 3:00 p.m. EST on Centric!


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