After decades on the big screen, Meagan Good is making a name for herself behind the camera with her latest project, “If Not Now, When?”
The film—which is now available in theaters, on digital, and on-demand—marks Good’s co-directorial debut alongside actress Tamara LaSeon Bass. In addition to directing the film, Good and Bass also co-star in the melodrama, which highlights a lifelong friendship between four Black women as they endure heartache and crisis.
A Leap of Faith
Good, who plays a mother who struggles with opioid addiction and is subsequently forced into rehab by her girlfriends, tells BLACK ENTERPRISE that she and Bass did not intend on directing the film. Rather, she says she was led into the director’s seat by divine intervention after the original director backed out while they were waiting for funding to support the making of the indie film.
“Initially, we weren’t going to direct it. We had another director,” said the “Think Like A Man” star. Rather than finding a replacement, Good and Bass mulled over the idea of directing “If Not Not, When?” themselves.
“I prayed about it for two months and then I heard God and felt God three times to say to do it. And so, I was like, ‘Alright, Lord, I’m going to go meet up with Tam, who’s my co-director, and I’m going to tell her in obedience that we can direct this together.”
Despite feeling moved by God to take on a director role, Good admits that she still didn’t feel 100% at peace with the decision and asked God for an “undeniable sign” of confirmation.
“So, I go to the meeting and I say, ‘hey, Tam, God said that let’s do this.’ And eight minutes later, the bank called and said, the money landed, eight minutes later after waiting eight months for it,” says the actress. “So, I was like, ‘all right, Lord,’ and everything about it was just like a faith walk and really a dream come true.”
Diversity in Hollywood
“If Not Now, When?” comes as Hollywood continues to address the lack of representation in the industry and struggles to tell stories that speak to the nuance of Black womanhood. Along with addiction and sisterhood, the movie tackles sickness, health, infidelity, infertility, and parenting.
“These are the kind of movies I grew up watching, like ‘Waiting to Exhale’ or like in the action space of ‘Set It Off’ or ‘The Women of Brewster Place.’ These projects really shaped the way that I saw the world and really let me see who I am and what I’m capable of being,” said the 39-year-old actress, who recently starred in the 2019 Sony adventure fantasy film “Monster Hunter.” Other acting credits under her belt include “Friday,” “Anchorman 2,” and Nickelodeon’s “Cousin Skeeter.”
“We do have a lot of content, but when it comes to these types of stories [about Black women], a lot of times its comedies, and they don’t always show us as complex as we are,” added Good. “A lot of the feedback that we got as we were trying to make this film was ‘well, I don’t know if anyone really wants to see a Black female drama.”
In spite of naysayers, Good and Bass persevered not only for themselves but to make a statement in Hollywood at large.
“It is about breaking glass ceilings. It is about inspiring each other and letting each other know that we’re worthy and if we just put our minds to it, and focus our energy on God, and do the work, we can really, really do anything.”
“If Not Now, When?” hits theaters and is available on digital and demand Friday, January 8.
Watch Meagan Good’s full interview on The New Norm With Selena Hill below.