Talk about the “Reel” Deal! Karena Evans is a 24 year-old Toronto native quickly becoming one of entertainment’s most sought-after directors. In 2018, she flew into the spotlight for directing the music video for Drake’s 2018 hits “Nice for What” and “I’m Upset” and SZA’s “Garden (Say It Like Dat).”
She was named Video Director of The Year at the 2018 Hip-Hop Awards and 2019 BET Awards for her cinematic and story-focused directorial style. She was also honored with the Prism Prize Lipsett Award for her visual storytelling, making her the first woman to ever receive the award.
Evans is also an actress, beginning her career in 2016 with a role in WhiteWoods. She starred in two feature films, “Every Day” (Dir. Michael Sucsy) and “Firecrackers” (Dir. Jasmin Mozaffari). “Firecrackers” premiered at the 2018 Toronto International Film Festival. That same year, she also had a recurring role in the Canadian TV drama, “Mary Kills People.”
When asked about black female directors, she said “I think that the first thing to realize is that there are in fact a lot of female directors. There are a lot of women of color who are here in present. The unfortunate part is that we were not always given a place.. .It just made me want to work 10 times harder to prove that there is nothing different between me and my male counterparts… If I can in some way inspire another young girl to also believe in herself, then I’m doing a good job.”
With Karena taking the directing world by storm, she’s a name you’ll want to remember! Check out Karina’s impressive portfolio here!