A new Essence Studios series distributed by BET Plus is coming our way and it’s definitely one to add to your watch list. Created and produced by Essence Studios head Sidra Smith, A Luv Tale follows the escapades and lives of a friendship between four lesbians of color in Harlem as they navigate through life, love, and sex. “You can expect some shit you ain’t seen before. Period,” Smith laughed when asked by ESSENCE what we can expect from the series,
Throughout the series, viewers will get a deeper dive into our protagonists as they maneuver through the cultural landscape of art, music, and fashion. They will also face the daily adversities that come along with being in the LGBTQ+ community: equality, diversity, inclusion, transgender issues, and love. “It’s timely for the Black community because we are finally acknowledging that we have Black gay friends and family members. People will relate because they will be able to see themselves and the circles in which they move – their friends, their family, and lovers,” Smith explained. “A Luv Tale is also real and multi-generational. Viewers will appreciate that!”
With original music by Wyclef Jean, Terri Lyne Carrington, and Ray Angry, the series stars Vanessa Williams, Sheria Irving, Rotimi, Swizz Beatz, and Leon. “You gon’ feel sexy as hell,” said Grammy-winning musician Wyclef Jean about how you’ll feel after taking a peek at the trailer, for which he scored the original theme song. “I hadn’t seen anything this sexy in a while. It reminded me of the twists and turns that take place in the neighborhood and it felt bold like Precious and Moonlight.”
Watch the official trailer below as we wait for the highly anticipated June 3rd release date:
Smith announced the initial screening of A Luv Tale back in February 2019, which was held at the Pan African Film and Arts Festival in Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza Mall. The six-episode digital program continues right from where her 1999 film of the same title left audiences last. “I hope people will see it as an opportunity to support a project that will address real issues in the LGBTQ community while bringing the entertainment and drama of shows like Insecure and Sex and the City,” said Smith according to a press release from the original announcement.
For the original production, Smith wrote, directed, and produced the movie, A Luv Tale, which starred Tichina Arnold, MC Lyte, Gina Ravera, Michele Lamar Richards, and Angela Means. The indie went on to snag several awards, including the Audience Award at the Hollywood Black Film Festival. A Luv Tale was added to Amazon Prime to stream and quickly became one of the platform’s most popular releases. “When I look at all the challenges the LGBTQ community is facing when it comes to equality, acceptance and transgender issues, I feel there’s no better time than now to see this story,” Smith said about re-debuting A Luv Tale as a series nearly 20 years after the film. “I still felt that a huge part of the queer community of color I know was still underrepresented which made me feel that there was space for it.”
A Luv Tale premieres on June 3rd on BET Plus.