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‘This is Our Screening Room’: Ava DuVernay Opens a Theater in Los Angeles to Help Women and People of Color Show Their Films

Ava DuVernay wants to pay her success forward by providing a space for other women and people of color to show their films, documentaries and other visual projects.

The famed director completed what’s called The Amanda Theater in June, and its named after her late aunt Denise Amanda Sexton.

Ava DuVernay opened her own theater in Los Angeles so women and people of color can have an easier time showing their films. (Photo: Paras Griffin / Getty Images Entertainment via Getty Images)

Currently, the theater is hosting the very first Array 360, a screening series that places a spotlight on films made by women and people of color.

It sits on a 14,000-square-foot gated campus in Los Angeles’ Filipinotown, which opened last year. And besides the screening facility, the property has a post-production area, along with other places for film use.

And one noticeable aspect of the theater is its unique turquoise seating, which of course is different from the traditional burgundy seats that many theaters go with.

“You walk in and the color hits you,” DuVernay told the Los Angeles Times. “We wanted to be a little rebellious. Look, we’re black ladies. This is our screening room. We want hot pink chairs? We’re going to have them.”

Array 360 runs from September 27 through November 2 on the weekends, and it will be an annual event. And Duvernay said it will always be a place where women and people of color won’t have to beg to have their work shown.

Plus the theater marks the first time the public will be allowed on the Los Angeles campus, which DuVernay said she’s excited about.

“Array 360 is the opening of the door and the first invitation for people in the community to come in,” she stated. “It is the entry for films to be shown from other community stakeholders, where you don’t have to beg, borrow, plead or have a big studio to show your work.”

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