Mary J. Blige, Jay Z & Roxanne Shanté Take Center Stage During the 2017 Sundance Film Festival

ABC/Fred WatkinsMary J. BligeJay Z and hip-hop pioneer Roxanne Shanté are all making their presence known on the silver screen during this year’s Sundance Film Festival. 

Mary stars as Florence Jackson in director Dee Rees‘ period dramaMudbound, which is set in the post-World War II Mississippi. The movie is based on Hillary Jordan‘s 2008 novel of the same name. 

Jay Z’s documentary Time: The Kalief Browder Story, which the rapper executive-produced, offers an in-depth look at a former Bronx high school student who was incarcerated for three years on New York City’s Rikers Island for allegedly stealing a backpack.  

After surveillance footage of Browder being assaulted by fellow inmates and an officer was shown via The New Yorker, Jay Z met with the young man. Browder committed suicide in 2015 after being released from prison.   

And Sundance audiences will be introduced to Roxanne Shanté in the biopic Roxanne, Roxanne. The film explores the artist’s life and role in a series of hip-hop rivalries, records and answer records — including her own “Roxanne’s Revenge” —  in New York City in the 1980s.

For more information about each movie, including premiere dates, check out  

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