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OITNB'S XENIA LEBLANC AND DARRYL WESLEY TALK "GRITTY & PRETTY WITH TANISHA LAVERNE GRANT (2141 hits)

Los Angeles — Xenia Leblanc, the actress that brought to life Young Red’s character in Netflix’s hit series Orange Is the New Black, is premiered her new series, Gritty & Pretty, at Dances with Films on Saturday, Sept. 5 with a second screening on Sunday, Sept. 6. Leblanc's series was accepted into the festival's Dances with Pilots slate.

A female-driven comedy centered around boxing gym owner Kira Waikovsky (Xenia Leblanc) and Lauren Barton (Kelly Russo), Gritty & Pretty tackles female empowerment and friendships with a punch. LeBlanc wrote, directed and stars in the five-episode series, whose pilot episode will premiere at the festival. A Q&A with the filmmakers will follow. You can watch the trailer here.

“I wanted to create a show that highlights female friendships and empowers up-and-coming female filmmakers to take charge and create the content they want to see on their screens. The sarcastic nature of my Russian upbringing has taught me to find humor in everything and that’s why I gravitate towards comedy. Today, more than ever, actors must learn how to amplify their own unique voice and adapt all the tools available to tell their story. I hope that Gritty & Pretty inspires people to pursue their dreams while embracing their authentic selves,” said Leblanc, who recently won this year’s Film Riot’s Stay At Home Film Challenge during quarantine.

 

The series took seven days to film and an $11,000 budget, a testament to the type of guerilla filmmaking that Dances with Films seeks to highlight.

 

Dances with Films began in 1998 as a film festival dedicated to finding tomorrow’s talent today and continues to carry on this mission. With many world and West Coast premieres, Dances with Films is a coveted first stop on the festival circuit.  

About Xenia Leblanc
Actress, comedian and filmmaker Xenia Leblanc graduated from Queen Mary University of London with a BA Degree in Film Studies and moved to Los Angeles to begin intensive acting training at Playhouse West School and Repertory Theatre. Her big break came when she landed the role of Young Red on the critically acclaimed Netflix Original Series Orange Is the New Black, followed by an opportunity to work on the WB blockbuster series Justice League.

In addition to acting, Leblanc has had numerous opportunities to work on the production side of filmmaking, including script-supervising the first Russian/American 3D film. Being an active member of the Elizabeth Banks's WHOHAHA platform, LeBlanc constantly writes, edits and produces independent films and sketches, which have appeared at the NYC Independent Film Festival. Her work has also won an award at the MyRodeReel Film Competition. Her short film Covert Message was a winner at this year’s Film Riot’s Stay At Home Film Challenge, shot entirely during quarantine.

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Posted By: Tanisha LaVerne Grant
Tuesday, September 15th 2020 at 11:09PM
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