Naomi Ackie, the British star of Whitney Houston: I Wanna Dance with Somebody, talks to Anna Smith about preparing for her portrayal of the musical icon. Ackie has been longlisted for a BAFTA Film Award for Leading Actress for her extraordinary performance. She explains how important it was to her that the audience was being shown a side of Houston that perhaps they hadn’t seen before, particularly with her same-sex relationship with her girl friend Robyn Crawford. They also discuss the importance of having a female director, Kasi Lemmons, at the helm with the involvement of Whitney Houston’s long-time producer Clive Davis, who is played by Stanley Tucci.
Anna is also joined by Vanja Kaludjercic, the director of the International Film Festival Rotterdam, giving insight into the 2023 programme and what it is that makes this film festival special. Vanja and Anna talk diversity, inclusion and internationalism within film and film festivals, and Vanja also picks out a few of this year’s highlights. Vanja also talks about why she has invited Girls On Film to return for the third time in January 2023 to record a live podcast episode – check back soon for that episode.