Watch: Writer of ‘The Blackening’ takes over CultureCon LA

Dewayne Perkins talks with theGrio's James Gilmore about sharing writing duties on "The Blackening" and what it meant for him as a Black LGBTQ man.

Dewayne Perkins, who co-wrote the recently released horror comedy, “The Blackening,” was among those giving CultureCon LA its fire back in June. At the events-filled weekend, which led the way for eccentric takeaways, meaningful guidance and fantastic fellowship amid Black creatives, Perkins talked with theGrio’s James Gilmore about sharing writing duties on “The Blackening” and what it meant for him as a Black LGBTQ man.

The following is a transcript of that conversation.

“The Blackening” co-writer Dewayne Perkins attends CultureCon LA on June 17 at Rolling Greens On Mateo in Los Angeles. He talked with theGrio about his project. (Photo: Emma McIntyre/Getty Images)

James Gilmore: All right, so, the writer of “The Blackening.” So, we really don’t see too many stories, you know, written by us and, you know, starring us, directed by us. What made you get into this?

Dewayne Perkins: I just loved art. I was a writer in Chicago. I was doing comedy, writing sketch. Then, you know, I wrote a sketch that went viral. And Tracy Oliver saw it — and years later, “The Blackening” is in theaters right now.

Gilmore: Do you see yourself going a little deeper in this industry, maybe directing some? What do you think? Where are we going from here?

Perkins: Oh, yeah, I’m taking over Hollywood. That’s the next step. You know, I’m done writing now. People are seeing me as an actor. I’ve always been acting, but, you know, as a queer black man, the opportunities are not plentiful. So I had to, you know, write a whole-ass movie to be lead in one. But now that that’s real, I’m not stopping. Well, they opened up the door. Now, I’m letting me and all my peoples in.

Gilmore: If you see other, you know, people in the queer community that say, ‘Hey, I want to write, I want to direct,’ give them a little motivation.

Perkins: OK. I would tell them to do it. Like, writing doesn’t start until you do it. You need pen to paper, fingers to keys, and you learn the best by doing it in real time. And then never diminishing your voice because you think you’re writing what somebody wants to see because you are the only you. So, nobody can do what you can do. So, you can do that the best for sure. That’s something you can control.

Gilmore: Thank you, Dwayne. This is theGrio. We’re here. “The Blackening'” is out in theaters right now. CultureCon, everyone.

Perkins: CultureCon!

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