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JACKSON, MISS. – September 14, 2022 – John Reyer Afamasaga, Writer and Creative Producer of Oxford, Mississippi, has been awarded a $4,250.00 grant from the Mississippi Arts Commission. This grant is a portion of the more than $1.4 million in grants MAC awarded in the Fiscal Year 2022 and will be used in developing the Door Ajar feature film. The grants are made possible by continued funding from the Mississippi State Legislature and the National Endowment for the Arts.  

 “The state’s arts community has displayed such resiliency during tumultuous times, and we are very pleased to provide grants to these worthy artists,” said Sarah Story, executive director of MAC. “Mississippi’s artistic legacy was built through the talents of its exceptionally creative citizens. These funds help support the next generation of amazing artists and ensure that the story of artistic excellence in our state lives on.”

 Door Ajar is a feature film about the life of M.B. Mayfield, an artist from Ecru who learned to paint at the University of Mississippi while working there as a janitor in 1949 during Jim Crow. He did it through a door ajar while sitting in a janitor’s closet, no less. 

 Afamasaga has already produced a documentary about Mayfield, which won Best Mississippi feature at the 2019 Oxford Film Festival. 

 Investors for the multimillion-dollar production to be shot in and around Oxford are being courted. An internationally recognized cast involving at least two A-Listers will be assembled around a director whose vision is true to the Black Experience. 

 The Mississippi Arts Commission is a state agency serving more than two million people through grants and special initiatives that enhance communities, assist artists and arts organizations, promote arts education and celebrate Mississippi’s cultural heritage. MAC is funded by the Mississippi Legislature, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Mississippi Endowment for the Arts at the Community Foundation for Mississippi, and other private sources. For more information, visit

 For more information about Door Ajar, the feature film please contact John Reyer Afamasaga: 

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