By Ali Mushtaq
Los Angeles, CA (The Hollywood Times) 1/17/23 – Writer and Producer Ish Brown created Clique, a show that documents the
lives of queer people of color in New York. We sat down with the multitalented creator and talked to him about his work.
The Hollywood Times.Today (THT): Why do you think this show is innovative?
Brown: It will be innovative because black LGBTQ representation is always looked at in a downward way where it’s stigmatized. My show will show us people of color at a certain statue in their life and the jobs they say we can’t have. But also see our real-life situations on screen told the right way where they can connect to and Allies can learn from as well especially when identifying someone as trans nonbinary gay and etc. but also understand we go through similar situations no matter who we love.
THT: There has been some work in the past that explores Black gay identities, like Noah’s Ark. Where do you think Clique falls into this lineage?
Brown: Clique is like the next generation of Noah’s Ark which I pay big homage to because Noah’s ark was like my guide going up something I can watch where I can see myself in the
show. Where it’s something relatable to my lifestyle and ups and downs that can and/or cannot happen.
THT: What would you say is the main message of Clique?
Brown: Life can be easy, it can be hard, there will be challenges and triumphs, sadness and happiness with just being who you are in this judgmental city. you can experience it alone, but you can have friends your clique who stick with you through it all through the good and bad they’re always by your side. To grow as you grow to love you for who you are no matter what. Friends turned Family.
THT: What were some challenges you faced during production?
Brown: Honestly funding. Trying to film as much as I can with what I have in my pocket check by check just to try and get those great shots. Sometimes people enjoy watching shows that maybe under budget, but this is special, and I want to bring it a certain way You know you want to get that great quality where it’s appealing to the eye even if it’s just the first episode first impression is important lLOL
THT: Do you think this challenge is common for Black productions?
Brown: Yes, because we are building from the ground up especially if no one knows you or it’s your debut project. Some grant opportunities you don’t get some contests you don’t win even with doing a GoFundMe sometimes you don’t reach your goal because people want to see the proof the work first and then invest so yeah sometimes you have to make that sacrifice and put
all you got into what you love to see greater. You gotta have faith.
THT: What can you say to future Black film makers?
Brown: Don’t give up and keep going for what you want. Your dream (emphasis) I started my project in 2021 and got a buzz around with no content just a small sizzle reel and photos and got
put into GLAASs EMEI program and even got featured in an article on Hollywood reporter within the year of 2022 and this is just the beginning and that too can happen to you all as well just stay
positive be kind smile work hard and pray and have faith don’t stop the chase.