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    PRESS

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    Kemba

    Sundance 2024

    Elvire Emanuelle's new feature film KEMBA was featured at the 2024 Sundance Film Festival with a special impactful filmmaking panel and on CNN. KEMBA, based on the significant true story of Kemba Smith, is directed by SXSW and Student Academy awarded Director, Kelley Kali, (LALO'S HOUSE, I'M FINE (THANKS FOR ASKING)). It is releasing in February 2024.

     

     

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  • KEMBA Trailer

    RELEASING FEBRUARY 2024

    FEATURED IN SUNDANCE SPECIAL PANEL

  • CNN Live

  • WORK COLLECTIVE

  • DEADLINE REVIEW 

  • Deadline

    "A star is born performance... this movie belongs to Emanuelle, who is clearly a star in the making. Her athletic prowess is impressive, but not nearly as much as what she is able to bring to the heartbreaking world of Monique. "

     

    Los Angeles Times

    "it all works because of Emanuelle. The actress is a tightly wound bundle of raw nerves, exposing each dimension of the teen’s emotions as she moves from sullen to fierce to vulnerable. "

     

    Refinery 29

    "Once in a while, a movie comes along with a breakout star so impressive, you just know they're going to make waves. Mark my words, this year that movie is First Match, and that star is newcomer

     

    Variety

    "a defiance the excellent Emanuelle channels even in the way she walks. ...Emanuelle manages to make us care about this bullying girl without pleading for sympathy. The tougher her character acts, the more we appreciate her show of bravado."

    New York Times

    “…played with vivid ferocity ...Emanuelle’s performance as Mo is certainly spectacular...”

     

    Vice

    "Emanuelle’s nuanced performance plays Mo’s tenacity with the pulse of desperation, an itching desire to be loved thrumming beneath the surface of her every impulse and decision."

     

    Hollywood Reporter

    "Emanuelle’s shifts in body language and demeanor make Mo’s navigation of all this compelling."

     

    IGN

    "Elvire Emanuelle breathes life into this character"

     

    IndieWire

    "raw and beautifully well-realized,"

     

    Daily Journal

    "Emanuelle gives a stunning performance of what it means to stay strong and persistent when the world around hands you nothing but hardships."

     

    RogerEbert.com

    "Emanuelle’s excellent performance, leads to sympathy for Monique’s terrible choices."

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    MEDIA

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    KEMBA

    Featured at Sundance 2024 and Releasing February 2024

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    First Match

    Netflix Original x SXSW

    FIRST MATCH wins the South by Southwest the Audience Choice Award and Gamechanger Award gaining audience and critical acclaim. FIRST MATCH is directed by award-winning director, Olivia Newman (WHERE THE CRAWDADS SING).

     

    Watch FIRST MATCH

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    FIRST MATCH

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    FIRST MATCH TRAILER

     

     

    SXSW DEADLINE INTERVIEW

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    ECLIPSED 

     

    By Danai Gurira - Performed at The Women's Theatre Project

    "Best Supporting Actress in a Dramatic Play" Winner - New Times

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    AWARDS

    FIRST MATCH

    Win

    Audience Choice Award

    Narrative Feature -

    South by Southwest 2018

     

    Win

    Gamechanger Award

    Narrative Feature -

    South by Southwest 2018

     

    Nomination

    Grand Jury Award

    Narrative Feature -

    South by Southwest 2018

     

     

    ECLIPSED

    Win 

    Best Supporting Actress Award 2012

    Dramatic Play - New Times

     

  • MORE PRESS

  • Entertainment Voice

    "Featuring a star-making performance by Elvire Emanuelle as Monique ...Emanuelle exhibits the same sense of filmic fierceness all throughout “First Match” that’s been projected by the likes of Charlize Theron in “Fury Road” and “Atomic Blonde,” and Taraji P. Henson in “Smokin’ Aces” and “Proud Mary” — it wouldn’t be surprising to see her land an action heroine role in the near future."

     

    Glide 

    "It’s rare that a sports drama can affect me in any meaningful way. ...The dichotomy of choices is presented enthrallingly through Monique, herself a fascinating, multi-faceted character played beautifully by Emanuelle."

     

    USA Today

    USA Today | Inclusion riders make 'First Match' a game-changing Netflix film

     

    IndieWire

    "raw and beautifully well-realized,"

     

    Refinery 29

    "Some movies just sneak up on you. You think you’re settling in for a chill hour and a half of distraction, and you end up talking of nothing else for a week. First Match is like that." 

    Refinery 29

    "Newcomer Emanuelle gives a deeply personal performance..."

     

    Deadline

    "rising star Elvire Emanuelle plays Monique"

    First Match’ Filmmaker & Cast Champion Strong Representation Of Women In Coming-Of-Age Wrestling Film — SXSW

     

    IndieWire

    "First Match is another in a long and impressive list of breakout independent features that were initially developed as short films."

     

    Daily Dot

    "Elvire Emanuelle anchors ‘First Match,’ one of Netflix’s best new films"

     

     

    Filmmaker

    The 50 Most Anticipated American Films of 2018

     

    People

    First Match is chosen as "What to Watch" in the April 2018 issue.

     

    Entertainment Weekly 

    First Match is chosen as a "Top Pick" in the March 28, 2018 issue.

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