Essence Atkins to Make Directorial Debut on TV One Movie ‘Christmas Dilemma’

Essence Atkins at the 50th NAACP Image Awards Nominees Luncheon at the Loews Hollywood Hotel on March 9, 2019 in Los Angeles, CA — Photo by Jean_Nelson/Deposit Photos

Essence Atkins will make her directorial debut this holiday season on the TV One original movie Christmas Dilemma.

“I am blessed to have the opportunity to collaborate with TV One once again to direct my first movie,” Atkins said in a statement Thursday. “I am immeasurably grateful for the opportunity to helm a film that I can declare I’m proud of.”

Atkins has a long history with TV One, after previously starring in the cable network’s films Girlfriend’s Getaway, Coins For Christmas and Coins For Love.

“Continuing our tradition of giving deserving and prepared talent an opportunity to diversify made the decision to have Essence Atkins at the helm of this movie easy,” Robyn Green Arrington, VP  of programming and production for TV One, said in a statement.

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Christmas Dilemma (Credit: TV One)
Christmas Dilemma premieres on Sunday, Dec. 6. (Credit: TV One)

In addition to her work with TV One, Atkins had roles in the television series Ambitions and Marlon. She is also known for her work in films including Deliver Us from Eva, Dance Flick, A Haunted House, and A Haunted House 2.

Christmas Dilemma is produced for TV One by Swirl Films, and was shot in Atlanta.

The cast includes BJ Britt (Being Mary Jane, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.), Brittany Hall (Ballers, Satisfaction), Carl Anthony Payne II (Martin, 5th Ward), and Christopher B. Duncan (Black Lightning, The Jamie Foxx Show).

Britt and Hall star as a newlywed couple trying to decide which set of in-laws to spend their first Christmas with. Without their knowledge, both sets of in-laws and long-lost relatives show up at their home unexpectedly to celebrate the holidays as drama ensues.

Eric G. Tomosunas and COO Robert A. Boyd II serve as executive producers on the film. James Seppelfrick, Ron Robinson and Keith Neal are producers for Swirl Films.

Christmas Dilemma premieres Sunday, Dec. 6 on TV One at 7 P.M. ET/ 6C with an immediate encore at 9 P.M. ET/ 8C.