CREDIT: Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP
THIS JUST IN: “Dear white people: the minimum requirement of black friends needed to not seem racist has just been raised to two. Sorry, but your weed man, Tyrone, does not count.”
For the uninitiated, Dear White People is the debut film of writer-director Justin Simien. What started as a concept trailer inspired by Simien’s time at Chapman University led to a Twitter account, @DearWhitePeople and ultimately a full-length feature. The movie takes place at a fictional Ivy League school, Winchester University, where a militant biracial film student hosts a radio show, “Dear White People,” that sounds like a kind of cousin of “Raceteenth or Various Observations About American Blacks (Those Formerly Known As Negroes) By A Non-American Black,” the blog Ifemelu writes in Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s novel Americanah. Other PSAs from “Dear White People” include “Please stop touching my hair. Does this look like a petting zoo to you?” and “Dating a black person to piss off your parents is a form of racism.”
Simien’s satire won this year’s Special Jury Award for Breakthrough Talent at the Sundance Film Festival. Simien reportedly introduced his film to viewers at Sundance by saying “For all the white people in the audience, on behalf of all the black people in the world, you most definitely have permission to laugh.”
Dear White People comes to theaters October 17. Mark your calendars, everyone.
In related news, Jessica Williams had this great bit on The Daily Show last night about the military’s restrictions on black hair:
The regulations, which forbid natural hair, twists, headbands, dreadlocks, or multiple braids larger than a quarter-inch in width, have actually been in place since March 31.