Photo credit: Dorothy Hong/ Team Epiphany

HBO premiered the highly anticipated second season of “INSECURE” for VIP guests and media during a private brunch at the Ace Hotel during ESSENCE Fest 2017 weekend. Following the screening, guests enjoyed a panel discussion moderated by “Insecure’s” podcast hosts Crissle West and Francheska Medina, and featured the show creator Issa Rae, executive producers Prentice Penny and Melina Matsoukas, and cast members Yvone Orji and Jay Ellis.  

Notable guests, such as Solange and designer Melody Eshani, and attendees mixed and mingled over mimosas and cocktails, while listening to beats by DJ Jasmine Solano. Guests enjoyed their drinks and food in an open indoor-outdoor space, as they awaited the doors of the screening room to open.

Season two kicked off as Issa (Rae) and Molly (Orji) navigate post breakups and microaggressions at work. Issa continues to hope for success with her tutoring program for at-risk teens at a local high school and reconciliation with her ex-boyfriend, Lawrence (Ellis). The audience was filled with anticipation as they viewed the episode, hoping for a reconnection between the exes..  

Jay Ellis and Yvone Orji/ Photo Credit: Dorothy Hong/ Team Epiphany

Following the showing, the cast and executive producers discussed the public reaction, support, and the success of a Black show in a White-saturated industry. “We thought we had something special and we just believed in it really hard. To see two years later and two seasons in, the support and love people have for the show just validates three people of color in the business,” said Penny.

The panel also discussed the authenticity of the show and the connection fans have to it. “We are presenting people as they are and knowing that nobody is perfect,” Rae said.

“The best part of what I get to do is knowing that people are connected to the characters and have such strong feelings. No one is down the middle, you feel one way or you feel the other way, whether you are siding with Issa or siding with Lawrence,’ Ellis added.

Viewers will be in for a treat when the show premieres. Season two of “Insecure” airs exclusively on HBO on Sunday, July 23 at 10:30 p.m. EST.

All photos are credited to Dorothy Hong/ Team Epiphany.

HBO_Insecure_NOLA_1224
HBO_Insecure_NOLA_1180
HBO_Insecure_NOLA_1162
HBO_Insecure_NOLA_1050
HBO_Insecure_NOLA_1024
HBO_Insecure_NOLA_1000
HBO_Insecure_NOLA_0974
HBO_Insecure_NOLA_0955
HBO_Insecure_NOLA_0936

Prentice Penny

HBO_Insecure_NOLA_0925
HBO_Insecure_NOLA_0912

Crissle West and Francheska Medina

HBO_Insecure_NOLA_0819
HBO_Insecure_NOLA_0739
HBO_Insecure_NOLA_0674
HBO_Insecure_NOLA_0596
HBO_Insecure_NOLA_0587
HBO_Insecure_NOLA_0577

Jay Ellis and Yvone Orji

HBO_Insecure_NOLA_0511

DJ Jasmine Solano

HBO_Insecure_NOLA_0493
HBO_Insecure_NOLA_0451
HBO_Insecure_NOLA_0439
HBO_Insecure_NOLA_0415

Issa Rae

HBO_Insecure_NOLA_0400

Melina Matsoukas and Issa Rae

HBO_Insecure_NOLA_0389

Melina Matsoukas

Nia Chantal

Journalist. Actress. Music Lover. Concert- Goer. Travel Enthusiast. Beauty Addict. Just a Southern girl living life to the fullest. Follow my life on Instagram @niachantal