As a society we’ve only recently begun to see widespread support for mental health awareness. Currently mental illness is still regarded as taboo in discussion and represented even less in the media and communities of color. Using satire allows us to normalize these issues in a digestible way.
Keep it Colorful
Inclusion Statement#FML explores the heights and depths of an often forgotten disability: mental illness. Nicole Lockley, lead actress and writer, is leading this primarily black cast and crew; providing a voice for those that survive additional struggles such as alcoholism, domestic violence and molestation.
About The Project
In an age where depictions of acceptance for black queens and likes dictate status, a social media influencer aims to teach society a lesson about mental illness. In turn she faces demons that filters and photoshop can’t hide.
After giving the world a glimpse of the vulnerable girl under the waist trainer, Nikki is confronted with the disheartening desensitization to suicide. In an attempt to bring light to the impact of mental illness, she launches a social media campaign promoting a suicide, her own.
In season one, Nikki’s boyfriend Wade fails to maintain their relationship after she’s accepted his secret child. Reeling from rejection, Nikki must also cope after a close friend is murdered, making the promise of her campaign all the more likely.
As the date of the deed approaches, Nikki’s journey through the heights and gallows of her mind begin to inspire reluctance. By the end of the first season Nikki survives her attempt, leaving her with a new lease on life and residual hatred from cyber trolls.
Seemingly on a track to healing in season two, the real life implications of virtual animosity catch up with Nikki when she is kidnapped. Her captor Zack, a troubled student, believes Nikki’s survival was a fluke and begins his own suicide-murder campaign with Nikki at the helm.
The former tool of her demise proves integral when her best friend, her ex, and his friend must use half-baked clues from social media and the dark web to save her.
Over the course of five morbid seasons, we bare witness to the high stake lessons in self love and validation that each of these lost souls must endure to learn to love the life they live IRL.
Meet The Creator
If you’ve got your finger on the pulse of Atlanta’s independent film industry, you may have heard of Actress Nicole L. If you haven’t yet heard that name, you soon will if it’s up to her.
This actress (who refuses to be called an aspiring actress) is surely a force to be reckoned with. She’s been cast in four different web series, a play, and produced an original short film all- all in 2018. To say she is driven is an understatement.
“I’ve been an actress as long as I can remember,” the 29-year-old married mom of one said. “I couldn’t imagine pursuing any other career.”
Nicole Lockley-Obi, a Morton, Pennsylvania native (a small suburb southeast of Philadelphia) started her career by performing in church and school plays. She continued performing in school plays and appeared in her first commercial at 14 for an anti-smoking campaign called ‘Busted!’.
Although performing arts was an obvious passion of hers, in 7th grade she discovered another talent which would later inform her college education choice. During this time, she also discovered another side of herself and began telling stories through the eyes of a feisty, 90-something-year-old woman.
“I started doing stand-up comedy as Hannah Mae in 8th grade. I dedicated the role to my great-grandmother that passed that year. I wore her clothes, her wig, her jewelry, and her walker,” she explained. “It was Madea before Madea because I started that in 2003.”
In 2006, Obi was accepted on the spot at an Open House of her first choice, college pick, Lincoln University. In August 2007, she started her journey at the first Historical Black College/University which she credits with shaping her into the woman she is today.
“I met this guy at Spring Fling, the last month before I graduated from college, through a mutual friend. He was just supposed to be a one-night hookup, but 7 years later I’m blessed to still be with him, married for 2 years with a 2-year-old son,” she said.
She says she owes a world of gratitude to her mother and grandparents who “ran up and down the road” getting her all the places she wanted to go and always supporting any endeavors she had.
“My mother always gave me the encouragement to do whatever I wanted, and my grandparent played a huge part in raising me. My grandmother passed in August and I feel like I lost a piece of me,” she said. “However, I have no regrets because when I found out she had cancer I thanked her for everything she ever did for me every chance I got, to the point that she told me to stop because she got it.”
Through all her trials and tribulations, the one thing that has remained constant is her love for acting.
Moving to Atlanta in March of 2014 to pursue acting full time, Obi and her husband left everything behind including her public relations company and career as a journalist. Getting a very featured role in BET’s Being Mary Jane in Season 2 Episode 1 that April, and signing with an agent in November 2014, she had extremely high hopes for her career aspiration.
Since 2014, she’s been involved in a number of plays, short films, and other independent projects but she says an uptick in her career is in the near future.
“I’m obviously nowhere near where I want to be concerning my career. But 2018 has been an amazing year so far, and I have faith that this is my year,” she said. “And even if it’s not, I’m not stopping until I get where I want to be.
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About This Team
Nicole began acting at a very young age in church and school plays. Appearing in several stage plays and short films, she put acting on a brief hold to focus on her education. She graduated from Lincoln University Magna Cum Laude with a double major in Print and Broadcast Journalism in 2011. After briefly working as a news reporter in Philadelphia and running her own Public Relations company, she moved to Atlanta in 2014 to pursue acting full time.
Nicole is always looking for new and exciting acting opportunities in addition to producing her on material including the film Our Brothers Lives Matter which premiered in 2015; she is currently working on several other original projects.
Reese Haines has been in the entertainment industry for a little over 12 years; however, he has always been interested in entertaining people since the age of 6. His interest at such a young age made him want to test the ability of his talent, which led to his involvement in many school plays and musicals in middle and high school. His first project was a film titled “In His Image” in which he portrayed a man who watched his younger sister getting molested and raped by their father, only to follow in his footsteps and do the same to his daughter. This project was the first of many successful ventures, such as working with names like singers Selena Johnson and David and Tamela Mann, to directing his first miniseries this year, titled “Choosing Chastity.” His aspiration to be more involved in the entertainment business has led to him being the multitalented actor, producer, and director that he is today.
Reshina Bryant was born in Tokyo, Japan and developed a love for
traveling at a young age. Seeing the world has given her the desire to
share her point of view with a creative twist. This writer has a story
to tell with a powerful message of how love and laughter conquers all!
Reshina Bryant is a producer, writer and radio personality. In 2015
she wrote and directed a stage play " Did You See Me Do It?" With
over ten years in theater she has stepped into film where she
considers herself to be telling the same story a different way!
Social Media Manager
Rocky Mohammed is first and foremost an actor but as she has been immersed in film/tv she has also found herself falling in love with so many other facets of the entertainment industry. At the forefront of those other passions has been her desire to work in spaces that allow her to help fuel and propel projects that provide opportunities to other artists. The opportunity to work on #FML has provided a space for her to collaborate with other creatives on an amazing project that she truly believes in.
Penning her first script in 2009 and beginning development for her first episodic project in 2014, Arameta Williams was inspired to continue screenwriting after hearing Wendy Eley Jackson speak a few years later.
Today, between loglines, Williams can be found dedicating her skills as a both a project and brand manager to support new media marketing campaigns. Williams is also a co-founder of the Atlanta-based organization FullCircle Creative which facilitates quarterly project development initiatives and online learning to exact local standards in above the line production.