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Producer Kimberly Steward celebrated earning an Oscar nomination on was a producer for the film “Manchester By The Sea,” is only the second black woman producer to have her film be nominated for an Academy Award for Best Picture (second to the legendary Oprah Winfrey).

“This is exciting and surreal,” Steward said of her reaction to the news. “I’m just beyond belief.”

“Manchester By The Sea” follows a young man grappling with the idea of becoming his nephew’s guardian. After reading its script, Steward, who independently financed the $8 million movie, said she and production partner Lauren Beck were instantly attracted to the movie’s story line.

“I really was able to identify with the film as an African-American woman because I saw my own extended family dynamics and have family members that have dealt with very tragic situations,” Steward said. 

“It’s really important to represent who we are in front of the camera as well as behind the camera,” she said. “We’re amongst a really incredible group of filmmakers and films this year,” Steward said.

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