Tuesday, April 10, 2018 – A night of elegance and grace at the Reel Works Benefit Gala, honoring Danai Gurira, Phoebe Robinson, and Manish Dayal. The benefit was held at Capitale and the event raised $300,000 for the non-profit organization, which provides free filmmaking education and industry internships to underserved youth communities in New York.
The ceremony started with a cocktail hour. The venue was filled with actors, directors, executives, and students. You could feel the excitement in the air from people being star struck and others just enjoying life with an open bar. Moments later the doors open for the dinner. The red carpet was busy with honorees giving interviews, and of course, The Knockturnal was there to capture it all.
2 Dope Queens star and honoree, Phoebe Robinson, gave an emotional, funny and inspiring speech. She spoke about having confidence in the world of film, entertainment, and media. “It’s awesome to see so many young people being so encouraged and having a level of self-confidence to know their story is worth being told. So to those of you, who are just starting out in film, thank you and I’ll probably be auditioning for you in five years. So please say yes.” She even gave us an exclusive on the red carpet: “I have film coming up on Netflix, called Ibiza. It will come out during Memorial Day weekend.”
The night’s big moment was when Wakanda’s very own Danai Gurira accepted her award. Unfortunately, she was not able to be there in person, so she accepted her award via video. “As an artist, I’m deeply devoted to bringing other voices to the fore, to bringing untold stories to the stage as much as I possibly can. This award reminds me that I must continue to do so with passion, commitment, and devotion, but it also honors me in the sense that I have done something that has resonated. I’m so excited to see the stories, the works, the voices and the brilliance of the youth that are in this fantastic organization. They are indeed our future.”
The room was filled with many familiar faces such as Danielle Brooks from Orange Is The New Black and Yolanda Ross from the hit show CHI. Yolanda had some words for young actors ” Stay true to yourself.”
The Reel Works Benefit Gala raised a lot of money. We can’t wait to see who they will be honoring next year.