Nneka Onuorah, like so many other Black LGBTQ creatives, needs to be heard. Thankfully, her voice echoes throughout the entertainment industry and it calls for everyone to be their true selves.

The award-winning documentarian, filmmaker, and TV producer is making a name for herself by doing just that and highlighting the authenticity of others.

“I actually am a filmmaker who likes to tell stories. Even though it might be about this particular community, another community who has nothing to do with that community can relate and understand and can almost have a voyeuristic point of view into a world. So I love that,” Onuorah tells Queerty.

The New York native got her start with BET’s Black Girls Rock!, where she was an associate producer for multiple years developing a show that highlighted the brilliance and excellence of Black women and girls. 

 

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“You know, as a director, I always centralize my stuff in freedom. I feel like commercially, people always want to hear stories about how downtrodden things are, how bad, how sad. But I focus on diversifying the voice of the voiceless,” Onuorah says. 

That focus on freedom maintains a consistent presence in her work, as shown within her 2015 debut documentary Same Difference. The film highlights the life experiences and internalized homophobia of Black lesbians.

The documentary was nominated for a GLAAD award and became the platform needed for Onuorah to expand her creative reach. 

Her follow up work continues to promote Black queer stories. Onuorah produced the 2015 episode “I’m Genderqueer” for the MTV docu series True Life, produced Viceland’s docuseries in 2018 on New York City’s ballroom culture called My House, and in 2021 produced and directed the GLAAD award nominated HBO Max documentary The Legend of the Underground about the lives of queer Nigerians fighting against pressure to conform from society and from their government. 

 

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And as the upcoming filmmaker continues to diversify her storytelling, the world gains access to Onuorah’s promise to bring authentic storytelling to the screen. 

“Film is just a Ministry in which I get to tell a story,” Onuorah tells Queerty. “[It’s] where I get to connect people who know nothing about each other to get more empathy and more understanding and more truth of who people are from what it.”

 

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Now, the up-and-coming filmmaker can add directing Netflix’s The G Word with Adam Conover, directing episodes of Lizzo’s Watch Out for the Big Grrls on Amazon Prime, and working on Megan Thee Stallion’s documentary to her resume.

All in a day’s work, right?

 

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Onuorah has no plans on stopping her ascent into the upper echelons of the entertainment industry, but she also has no intention on losing her authenticity.

“I think the common calling card within my work is loving oneself,” she says. “Self love. Self love is the key to life.”

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We’re proud of Onuorah for using her voice and talents to amplify other LGBTQ people. There are stories to be told and she’s determined to ensure that they have their moment in the spotlight. In her world, authenticity is everything and it’s a world we should all want to live in. 

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