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2024 ESSENCE Hollywood House Returns for Its Fifth Year Featuring Da’Vine Joy Randolph, Da’Vinchi, Phylicia Pearl Mpasi, Skye Townsend & More!

Photo Credit: Paras Griffin/Getty Images for ESSENCE)


2024 ESSENCE Hollywood House Returns for Its Fifth Year Featuring Da’Vine Joy Randolph, Da’Vinchi, Phylicia Pearl Mpasi, Skye Townsend & More!

Los Angeles, California – March 8,2024 ESSENCE Hollywood House returned to Los Angeles for its fifth annual event featuring some of the industry’s most notable names and executives from film and television. Hosted by Skye Townsend, the event focused on equipping the community with the tools and resources needed to tackle some of the industry’s biggest challenges. 

The day provided attendees a range of ways to enter into the entertainment industry including a free mini-makeover and headshot session, a 30-second elevator pitch booth, a mock film set and much more. Panel discussions, fireside chats and speed mentoring sessions focused on key topics for film and television enthusiasts and professionals including: 

  • Fireside Chat with Da’Vine Joy Randolph: A peek inside the highs and lows of the entertainment industry and how to stay authentically true to yourself with Oscar-nominee and Golden Globe, SAG, and BAFTA award winner Da’Vine Joy Randolph (The Holdovers) and former ESSENCE editor & author Mikki Taylor. 
  • Partner in Prime: A talk moderated byNandi Howard (Vice President of Content & Senior Content Director, Essence Ventures) with Grace Africa (2022 TikTok Trailblazer) and Elsa Majimbo (Comedian) on how sisterhood plays an important role in their lives and success in the entertainment industry. 
  • Fashion x Film: Careers in Fashion Design: A look inside the creative process that drives the art of costume design withDominique Dawson (Actressm Origin) and Tanja Caldwell (Usher’s 2024 Super Bowl halftime performance). 
  • Black on Screen: A Global Dialogue: A conversation about maintaining authenticity both in front of and behind the camera with Barkue Tubman-Zawolo(Chief of Staff, Diasporic & Talent Engagement, ESSENCE Ventures),Phylicia Pearl Mpasi (Actress, The Color Purple), Osas Ighodaro (Actress, Man of God), and Ozi Menakaya (Film & TV Agent at Creative Artists Agency). 
  • Slated to Shine: Fresh Faces of Black Hollywood: The truth about the life and times of being  young, Black, and gifted in Hollywood Today with Co-Fonder of ESSENCE Girls United Rechelle DennisDa’Vinchi (STARZ BMF) and Layla DeLeon Hayes (The Angry Black Girl andHer Monster).
  • Producers Lane: The Ins and Outs of Production at Every Level: A deep dive into the world of production and the work behind every title with Olivia Charmaine (Morris) Bernardez (Netflix animated feature films) and Korin D. Williams(Kronicle Media) . 
  • Cast Talkback Diarra From Detroit:  Stephanie Dunivan (Vice President of Branded Content & Video, ESSENCE Ventures) leads a profound discussion withDiarra Kilpatrick (BET’s Diarra From Detroit), DomiNque Perry (Actress, Insecure), and Claudia Logan (Actress, The Equalizer) offering a sneak peak of their upcoming BET+ series, Diarra From Detroit, debuting on March 21st.

Other notable celebrities, influencers and special guests in attendance included, but not limited to: 

  • Marley Dias (Author, Marley Dias Gets it Done And So Can You)
  • Official Minks (Influencer, Actor)
  • Erika Bryant (Showrunner, Secrets & Sisterhood: The Sozahdahs
  • Courtney Burrell (Tyler Perry’s A Madea Family Funeral)
  • Zane Hubbard (Emmy-winning Producer, Director, and Writer)

To catch all of the exciting moments and highlights from this year’s event, please check out the video-on-demand of the 2024 ESSENCE Hollywood House on HERE

Celebrity photographer and disabled Vietnam veteran Jerome Dorn embodies the very definition of resilience. Born in Philadelphia, the fifth of seven children, Dorn stayed focused throughout his youth, eventually obtaining his degree in Criminal Justice. Dorn has worked with the Philadelphia Police Department, Department of Justice, World Wide Detective Agency, and several other high profile security groups. Throughout his successful career, Dorn wrestled with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, an aftereffect of his military service. Battling the pain and debilitating effect of PTSD, Dorn found comfort behind the camera. Photography proved to be not only therapeutic, but life changing as well. Dorn picked up his first camera in 1970 while serving in Vietnam and knew instantly that behind the lens was where he belonged. His shooting style and photographs were special, generating a buzz in the industry. In 1985, he began his career in photojournalism, working in a variety of genres. Dorn’s credentials include fashion, lifestyle photography, photojournalism, and celebrity/red carpet coverage. Working with MSNBC, Jet Magazine, and major publications in Philadelphia and around the country, Dorn has had the honor of capturing the images of hundreds of notable celebrities and politicians including President Barack Obama, George Bush Jr, Bill and Hillary Clinton, Maya Angelou, Jesse Jackson, Rihanna, Snoop Dog, Will Smith, and Tyler Perry. Photography has sent Dorn around the globe, inspiring his passion for civil activism. In 1995, Dorn assembled and led a group of forty-two men to the Million Man March. Together, they spent five days walking from Philadelphia to Washington DC. In his travels, Dorn observed a common theme amongst the youth of the world. Many of the children he encountered seemed lost. Understanding that opportunities for at-risk youth are minimal, Dorn was inspired to make a difference. Established by Dorn in 2011, InDaHouseMedia was built on the idea that there is room in the house for everyone. With InDaHouseMedia, Dorn’s mission is to provide the future generation with positive direction through sports, music, and photography.

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