The one and only TS Madison is a quintuple threat. She first hit it big with her “Wait a Minute” web series. She followed that with a hair accessory line, a book release, then her fabulous The New Supreme EP. Now, she’s taking to the big screen in Steven L. Coard’s new film, The Lady in the Locket.
In the new LGBT comedy, Qeescey Green (played by Shawn Singleton) is dumped by his male lover on his 35th birthday. Distraught and fed up, Qeescey makes a birthday wish to never fall in love again. Later that day, a mysterious box appears at his doorstep. Inside is a locket. Once Qeescey takes hold of the locket, he is transported into it where he meets Lareema, the Lady in the Locket (played by TS Madison), who gives Qeescey a test of love.
“I drew inspiration from the Sarah Michelle Gellar film, Simply Irresistible,” reveals Steven L. Coard from the Jersey City studios of Color of Love Production. “I wanted to create a similar film with an African American LGBTQIA cast.”
He says he chose Shawn Singleton for the lead role because of his comedic timing and “I needed someone who could play off TS Madison’s high energy.”
The story told in The Lady in the Locket is one many black gay men who are over 35 and still single can relate to, says Coard. He believes most have become jaded at the idea and prospect of finding true love. He also sees it as a double-edged sword. The same guys being dumped are often those who are only attracted to other men for their outside appearance and are unwilling to take the time to see past a man’s flaws.
In the film, Qeescey Green’s flaw is his job as a phone sex operator. Qeescey enjoys the job; has been at it for a long time, and especially loves working alongside his fun-loving best friend, Yadiris Ramirez (played by Magda Suriel). His ex Travis, however, likens the job to prostitution and uses religion — an undeniably strong influence in the African American community — as his justification to end the relationship.
“Travis is like many gay black men who are afraid to commit to anyone who walks outside of what is considered ‘the norm,’” says Coard.
Coard’s message to viewers is to be unapologetically you and stop trying to be like everyone else. “Find that person that appreciates your so-called flaws,” he says.
The Lady in the Locket was shot last month, over three days, in Jersey City, NJ. It is being distributed by Color of Love Production Studios, an award-winning production company that specializes in creating stories about the LGBTQ community of color.
The studio is affiliated with The Color of Love Production School for Film, Television, Theatre, and casts many of its actors, including Shawn Singleton, from the school.
“It’s a chance for students to get experience working alongside big name talent like Madison,” says Coard, adding, “It’s an exciting time for people of diversity to be working in film. We are hard at work, making memorable ‘diverse’ characters like Qeescey and Lareema that have mainstream appeal.”
“The Lady in the Locket” is out now. The Color of Love Production School for Film, Television, and Theatre is also enrolling students. Visit it’s website.