Author to Watch: Kimiko Matsuda-Lawrence of “Twenties”


Kimiko Matsuda-Lawrence makes use of writing as a method of world-building. Raised in each Washington, D.C. and Honolulu, Hawai’i in “a household of activists, essential race theorists, and freedom fighters,” the author, director, and producer grew up with no scarcity of storytelling inspiration.

She obtained her begin in theater, working alongside notable figures together with Anna Deavere Smith, Diane Paulus, and Kerry Washington. After writing and performing performs reminiscent of “Holding: A Queer Black Love Story,” “Black Magic,” and “I, Too, Am Harvard,” Matsuda-Lawrence shifted to on-screen initiatives.

Very like her performs, Matsuda-Lawrence’s work explores the nuances of Black love, friendships, private progress, and on a regular basis struggles. She expertly combines comedy with an earnest intent, creating a real and relatable viewing expertise for her viewers. In 2020, she landed her first main TV credit score as story editor and author for Season 2 of Lena Waithe’s “Boomerang.” Persevering with her work with Waithe, Matsuda-Lawrence got here on board for “Twenties,” in 2020 and 2021. The BET present facilities on three girls who’re navigating careers and relationships in Los Angeles.

Matsuda-Lawrence just lately took on her first venture as an government producer, Megan Trufant Tillman’s quick movie “Little Trumpet.” Set within the seventh Ward of New Orleans, the 30-minute drama explores the lifetime of a nine-year-old boy who desperately needs his brother to show him to play the trumpet. The 2022 quick explores themes of loss, isolation, and childhood innocence whereas rising up in a traditionally violent space, sparking conversations about childhood trauma and the resilience of Black communities in New Orleans. “Little Trumpet” made its means across the competition circuit up to now few months, touchdown the Louisiana Brief Jury Award on the New Orleans Movie Competition in November in addition to Finest Narrative Brief at Brooklyn’s Bushwhack Movie Competition.

Along with writing for the display screen and stage, Matsuda-Lawrence additionally pens essays, a lot of which have been revealed by Time Journal, MTV Books, and Simon & Schuster, amongst others. In “On Being Black and Asian in America,” she explores her experiences as a biracial girl. From moments of checking a field to point identification to coping with self-perception by way of her white friends, Matsuda-Lawrence reckons with what it means to be Black and Asian within the U.S. with candor. One part examines the dearth of progress for Black individuals in America: “It’s been 400 years, and we’re nonetheless ready, at all times ready — for a rustic that may by no means shield us,” she observes. 

Watch “Twenties” on BET and study extra about Kimiko Matsuda-Lawrence on her web site.



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