The Reel Black List: Annette Galloway, Filmmaker

Annette Galloway

Annette Galloway

Annette Galloway is an admirable and accomplished filmmaker who has achieved success and notoriety in her profession.

As a writer, producer, and director, she certainly possesses the ambition and determination to continuously create a memorable repertoire of masterpieces that showcase what she is passionate about.

Along with her pioneering spirit and a love for filmography — she has the unique ability to key into the depths of human nature and write stories that are relatable to people from all cultures and walks of life. She uses her life experience and wisdom to guide her creativity in order to manifest the vision within the seeds she has sown into her career.

It is an unquestionable truth that Annette is a multifaceted woman. She began her career in the entertainment industry as an actress where she worked in a variety of films such as Hoodlums, Losing Isaiah and Chain Reaction, just to name a few. These productions, plus many more, afforded her the opportunity to observe and learn while working closely with some of the industry’s finest.

She went on to star in several independent films and stage plays around Chicago before deciding to take more control over her career. Once she began to steer her own ship, she became even more passionate about her craft. With this new found freedom, she spent quality time behind the scenes writing, directing and producing films under her very own company, Diverciti Productions.

It is quite evident that this lovely lady has gained attention and respect from her peers. In the fullest sense, Annette is no stranger to following her purpose and living her life with intention.

Most recently, she has written, produced and directed her biggest project to date, her second feature film entitled, Just A Friend. The romantic-dramedy successfully premiered in Chicago in February. It is in every way appropriate that the movie has gained a substantial fan base on social media, as there are frequent and lively discussions related to the hot topic of women and men “just” being friends.

Not only does the official fan page, Just a Friend The Movie, boast a distinguishing five-star viewer rating, the film is currently ranking as a semi-finalist in the 2018 Los Angeles International Film Festival Awards (LAIFFA)

With her goal orientated and success-driven personality, she is currently enrolled in an online filmmaking master’s class taught by the legendary Spike Lee.

Even with her abundant arsenal of energy, Annette is fully aware of the importance behind taking a break and simply relaxing. She finds joy in fine dining, live theatre, traveling, reading a variety of metaphysical and psychological books, and of course, engaging in soul stirring conversations with friends.



What was your first break?

I believe my first break came when I had the opportunity to pursue my deepest dream of becoming an actress when I was awarded a full scholarship to the theater, film and dance department at the University of Toledo. Which clearly paved the way to where I am today writing, producing and directing my own films.

Worst thing that ever happened to you to remind you that you are Black?

Nothing has to remind me that I’m black.

But, I do recall a time during my college years when a visiting professor from New York obviously felt it was his job to remind me that I was black as he pointed out in a class full of my white peers the type of roles I should be studying — I wanted to play roles such as Lady Bracknell from The Importance of Being Earnest, and he pointed out I should be focusing on roles such as Harriet Tubman played by Cicely Tyson — My thought was why can’t I do both? Although, I am aware of color and cultural differences that is not how I choose to define myself, even back then being the only black female in the theater department, I never expected to be treated any worse or any better than my peers based on the color of my skin.

Best thing to ever happen to you to remind you that you are Black?

I have had many great things happen in my life, but I can’t necessarily say they happened because I am black. There is only one event I can recall in my life that had a direct correlation with me being black. In high school I was nominated by my peers to run for queen of the Afro American Ball. The Afro Ball, was a city wide function in my hometown that all of the high schools participated in, it was a very big event. A time when all of the black students came together in a huge ballroom for dinner and dancing outside of school in their most stunning formalwear, the girls in elegant evening gowns and the boys in their tuxedos, each school elected a Queen and King along with the court of runner ups who were crowned and represented their school at the ball. I was voted the Queen from my school of the Afro American Ball. Had I not been black, I would have never experienced that amazing moment in time.

Work you are most proud of?

I am most proud of my recently completed feature film, Just A Friend.

How has the business changed since you broke in?

The onset of reality TV has really changed the direction of media. I grew up in an era of scripted television with trained actors portraying characters. Now, I see a bunch of characters imitating life allowing us to peek into their fabricated lives. I enjoy and am entertained by it all!

Trapped on an island, what are the creative essentials you must have?

The only creative essential I must have is a sound mind in order to create and enjoy my own imagination endlessly.

If you had a time machine, what would you say to your past self?

Be careful of distractions whether they come in the form of people, jobs, food any vices that are placed in your path to detour you from your destiny. Help yourself first and then you will be better equipped to help others. You must be an active participant in your own life, don’t just go along to get along. Last but not least, understand that people are entitled to their opinions about you, good or bad, but that doesn’t mean you have to be that which they define.

If you could have a one-on-one with anyone who would it be? And why?

My one on one would have been with Prince the performer. I was so intrigued by him. He had a presence and a certain je ne sais quoi that I admired. I enjoyed watching him evolve over the decades from this seemingly fearless sexual deviant to a man of great faith. He had a certain mystery, the ability to always leave one wanting more. His genius inspired me, touched my spirit as a young girl and transcended into my adult life, even to the point of finding myself bonding with others through his music.

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