Black Film Fest founder highlighted on MSR video series

The MSR recently unveiled a new video series “What’s Happening, MN?” (WHM) that aims to highlight and amplify the voices and stories of some of the Twin Cities’ brightest creatives.

For the premiere episode of WHM, host Tiffany Johnson welcomed guest Natalie Morrow, CEO and owner of the Morrow Group, the Twin Cities Black Film Festival, and Black Fashion Week Minnesota.

From her more than 20 years of experience, Natalie shared the inspiration behind her work and practical steps and tips for being a successful creative and entrepreneur. She shared the lessons she learned from the pandemic, highlights from this year’s Black Fashion Week Minnesota, and what to look forward to for the 2021 Twin Cities Black Film Festival (TCBFF).

This year, the TCBFF runs October 21-24, 2021. “We have about 42 films,” Morrow shared. “We have two or three about mental health. We have a couple of Black Lives Matter documentaries about different things that have taken place. We really try to pick a little bit of everything for people to see.”

Morrow advised other creatives to “be focused on what is your final goal” and not get distracted by pitfalls along the way. She also encouraged budding creators not to turn down jobs because of their lack of experience. “Be honest and be upfront with whoever it is you’re working with and still do it,” Morrow said. “The best way is to have the experience and you can’t learn if you don’t have experience.”

Looking ahead, Morrow said, “One of the ways that I’m trying to continue doing what I’m doing is, I’d like a movie theater—the first Black-owned movie theater in Minnesota. It would be like a boutique theater where they have 60-75 seats. But within that, there would be other things.

“I’d like a coffee shop, a fashion house, and a space to educate,” Morrow added. “It would be a space for people to rent out and do events. It would be less than what other people are charging so that it’s affordable for us. I think these are ways for us to get ahead of the game and own our blocks, and own our businesses and own our communities.”

The 2021 Twin Cities Black Film Festival runs from October 21-24, 2021, at the Radisson Red Hotel located at 609 S. 3rd St. in downtown Minneapolis. For more info, visit

To watch “What’s Happening, MN?” visit or @MNSpoksmanRecorder on YouTube or Facebook.