“This Is A Love Letter To Us” Ava DuVernay, Oprah, And Storm Reid Grace February Issue of Essence To Talk “A Wrinkle In Time”

Now that Essence is black-owned again, I get extra giddy when I see news about the magazine. The publication announced that Oprah, Ava DuVernay, and Storm Reid will be gracing its February issue to promote the film A Wrinkle In Time. And guess what? The issue is available today!

We’ve heard so much about how historical the making of Wrinkle was, in particular, that for the first time, a major motion picture studio hired a woman of color to direct a film with a $100 million budget. In the Essence article, DuVernay reflected on being “the first,” saying:

“When I’m introduced as the first this, first that…It doesn’t mean anything to me. It’s not anything I earned. I don’t allow myself to take it in like it’s real. I’m trying to have all of us up in there and more. I don’t want to be someplace by myself. I don’t want to be on a pedestal as the first this and that. That’s so wack; that is the old way of thinking.”

And this is why we love her! In addition to delivering what I am sure will be a “new classic,” the 45-year-old makes it very clear that the message of Wrinkle is for us Black girls and women. She said, “I so want Black women to love it and Black girls to love it. I want everybody to love it, but this is a love letter to us.” Essence used that quote on its Twitter page to make that message plain as day as well:

Looking like an ad for  cross-generational beauty, Oprah, DuVernay, and Reid were asked in a “Behind The Cover” segment what impact they think the film will have on pop culture. The star of the film, 14-year-old Reid said, “I think it will inspire a lot of young women, a lot of young, African-American women because there’s so much diversity and inclusion in the film, so it’s just kind of like a learning lesson like we can all come together, we can all be one, we can all make something happen, and we can change the world.”

Oprah, bringing extra wisdom and depth to her belief in what the film will do for viewers said, “I believe in the film so much because it represents so much of my own personal mantra, belief system, what I know to be true. So, to be able to leave this message that we are all, if we choose to be, carriers of the light, this film will have the impact because they will get to see, particularly through Storm’s character, that it is possible even when you’re confused…when you feel awkward that the light is in you, and so that moment when my character says to [Storm’s] character, ‘Be a warrior.’ [Storm says], ‘I’ll try.’”

All in all, Wrinkle is a film that will reflect us because that is what truly inspired DuVernay while she was making it. We were its muses, and again, DuVernay wants us all to have that as our takeaway when we check it out, stating, “This is me trying to make us in a way we haven’t been rendered in film before—as a firmly centered hero in a fantasy about other worlds and as the saviors of the whole universe. Looking at everything we think we’re not, and at the end of the movie we are all of everything.” The film hits theaters March 9.