Adamma and Adanne Ebo, the filmmaking duo who also happen to be identical twin sisters, were hoping their directorial debut would be a star-studded affair. When it was time to cast the lead role in Honk For Jesus, Save Your Soul, "I said a 'Regina Hall-type,"' Adamma told Variety. "Because I thought, 'There’s just no way. It's my first feature. I'm lucky [that] anybody's even shown an interest in making this.'"
Well, to her shock, Hall said yes.
In Honk for Jesus, Save Your Soul, which premieres during this year's Sundance Film Festival, Hall plays first lady Trinitie, one half of a megachurch power couple attempting to rebuild after an unholy scandal. Sterling K. Brown stars as her husband, pastor Lee-Curtis Childs, who hires a documentary crew to film their comeback. (The sisters cast Brown not because of his award-nominated work on This Is Us, but from a guest appearance on Brooklyn Nine-Nine.)
"There's a ton about Southern Baptist megachurch culture that is just inherently funny. We didn't need to necessarily caricature certain things to make it that," Adanne explains.
Adamma filmed a short film of the same name as her thesis project while getting her Masters in Film at UCLA, ultimately inspiring the feature-length version that was selected for the Sundance Screenwriting Intensive in 2019. Adanne (who had majored in law) joined her sister to direct.
"There's no reason for me to have graduated film school in 2018, and by 2021, I'm making my first measure feature with Sterling K. Brown and Regina Hall. That don't make no sense," says Adamma. "We put in work along the way, [but] I attribute so much of it to a higher power."
In addition to Honk for Jesus, Save Your Soul, the Ebo sisters have a second feature in the works, as well as gigs directing on Atlanta's forthcoming fourth season and Amazon's Mr. & Mrs. Smith reboot series starring Donald Glover.
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