Actress Nia Long stopped by The Joe Madison Morning Show on SiriusXM today to promote her new film, “Fatal Affair”, co-starring Omar Epps and Stephen Bishop which premieres July 16th on Netflix. Long also produced the romantic thriller.
The actress talked about her character Ellie, an empty nester in a hollow marriage who decided to open her own law practice. When an old friend drifts into her life, he at first seems to be the fuel she needs to add some passion and fire back inro her staid life. However, he turns out to be much more trouble than her character bargained for. “ It sort of turns into a very uncomfortable situation for her,” Long explained.
For Long, melodrama aside, “Fatal Affair” brought up some serious issues. “We’re living in an important time where we have to have these conversations about mental health. I take things very seriously. I think a lot of people are suffering right now with mental health, with being forced to stay home and not knowing what the future holds.”
Long expressed her opinion that mental illness is still stigmatized in the Black community. “ people are judged for reaching out and getting mental health to say that, ‘Oh, well, you’re crazy, or something’s wrong with you?; And the reality is life is throwing so much at us right now, and we don’t always have the tools to find ourselves in the midst of the trauma.”
The actress also acknowledged that Hollywood has stepped up to the plate in terms of representation of Black women in the past few weeks, very likely in response to the resurgent Black Lives Matter movement in the wake of George Floyd’s murder. She did question the true motivations of the decision-makers who made such sudden and dramatic pivots toward inclusion. I feel a way about that. Why weren’t you doing that before? What made you change? Are you guilty? Did you feel like it wasn’t necessary to represent the very women who buy your clothes and your products that you’re selling? What made you change?“
Referencing her recent biopic, “The Banker” about the life of twentieth century businessman Bernard Garrett, Long indicated that she thought the ultimate answer for the Black community was to look within, once again. “ ‘The Banker ‘is all about this generational wealth, building within our own communities. When you look back at our history and you look at Black Wall Street, we had it right back then. We had it right to go within our neighborhoods, to hire our own, to build and pour back into our communities. That is what we did, and so we have to start going back to that.”
The fact that the police officers who killed Breonna Taylor have still not been charged is something that Long indicated weighs heavily on her mind. “ It’s completely unacceptable,” she said. “It breaks my heart. Breonna Taylor was an upstanding accomplished citizen. And she’s a black woman. I’m disappointed. I’m angry. I think it’s unfair, and I don’t think that we can let up and let the conversation dissipate until we see some real action.”
“The Joe Madison Show” (weekdays from 6-10am on Urban View channel 126).