Feature Post: An Exploration of the Animated Film, Nate & John

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To say that I am enthralled by the movie would be an understatement! Part of what made me love this short, animated movie is my love for animation. I always enjoy watching animated movies. I would honestly say that the awards won by this movie, Nate & John, is well deserving. Now you might be wondering what this is all about.

The Story of Nate & John

John is dragged into the shop by his father who wanted to have something done about his son’s hippie haircut. Nate is a young, black apprentice at a local barber shop. This was in the 60’s, Nate and John’s first meeting. John, a surly teen hippy, reluctantly lets Nate cut his hair.

Taking the challenge, Nate finds a cut that will appease both father and son. From this ordinary beginning, a slow profound friendship blossoms between the two men over decades’ worth of trips to Nate’s barber chair.

Now a regular, John returns the favour by introducing Nate to a beautiful woman standing just outside the window. As Nate and John grow old, they are there to support each other through all of life’s important milestones and hurdles.

Until one day, when Nate misses their usual appointment for the first time ever. As John discovers Nate in a hospital bed, he also learns the scale of Nate’s impact on the community.

The animated movie is written by David Bickel and Michael Bickel, and directed by Jumai Yusuf.

Accolades for Nate & John

Nate & John is a winner of the 1st ever Gold House Cultural Impact Award at the American Pavilion Emerging Filmmaker Showcase. It was also selected for the World Premiere at the 2024 Tribeca Film Festival and American Pavilion Emerging Filmmaker Showcase at Cannes 2024.

In addition to these prestigious recognitions, Nate & John has been well received by many people all over the world. It makes sense to say that the story of Nate and John won the heart of many.

About the Director — Jumai Yusuf

Jumai Yusuf is a director, writer, producer, and a Muslim, Nigerian immigrant who is passionate about telling BIPOC genre stories. Her screenwriting has been supported by MPAC Hollywood, the Black List, and the Sundance Institute. She has a B.A. in Neurobiology from Harvard and an MFA from USC School of Cinematic Arts.

As a director, Jumai hopes to combine her love of science and art through film. She is passionate about genre filmmaking (sci-fi, fantasy, horror), and since she is a Muslim, Nigerian immigrant, she always strives to bring the stories and characters of underrepresented minorities to the screen. Her main interests are writing and animation. She is a fellow in the inaugural Sundance Institute x Walt Disney Muslim Artist Fellowship program. In 2022, her script “Cocoa Doll” was selected for the Black List’s Muslim List and the WScripted Cannes Screenplay List.

In 2020, Jumai produced two animated short films. SIMULACRA, a live-action / 3D animation hybrid, won the Student Academy Award in the Alternative/Experimental category. Izzy’s Demons, a hand-drawn 2D animated film, was shortlisted for the student BAFTAs. She was selected for the inaugural Television Screenwriting Lab for Black Muslim Writers run by MPAC and The Blackhouse with her animated TV series Layla and the Starship Afrotopia.

Kingsley Osajie

Kingsley Osajie

Kingsley Osajie is an Emissary of Light and a STRONG advocate for altruism, service to humanity, and compassion. He is a creative and artistic person. A heart-based, talented, outstanding, prolific writer. A media, ICT, and growth enthusiast. He writes in many categories. Kingsley is a published author of 6 books, and he is currently working on his 7th book. He has published a book about Black Lives Matter, Law of Attraction, etc. Kingsley’s books can be found on his online book store on Selar: https://selar.co/m/KayceeGold. When not writing, Kingsley likes to spend time in nature and sightseeing. He loves swimming, hiking, voyaging, ping-pong, gymnastics, watching WWE, documentaries of wildlife, music and watching nice movies. Kingsley is a Life, Spirituality, Culture, Inspirational, Personal Development, and Wellness blogger at www.kingsley-osajie.com.