How fast time flies; I feel like it was just yesterday when I was LA for this year's Pan African Film Festival; but the festival was in February, as it is just about every year.
And with February 2013 looming, the festival has begun putting together its program for next year, as you'd expect at this junxure.
Set to be feted during the festival's 2013 event are actors Omari Hardwick and Nicole Beharie – two S&A favorites – who will both be honored with the festival's annual Rising Stars award, I've learned exclusively.
Omari Hardwick has been tapped for the Canada Lee Award and Nicole Beharie for the Beah Richards Award. Obviously PAFF’s Rising Star awards are named after actors Canada Lee and Oscar-nominee Beah Richards, who pioneered roles for African Americans in cinema, television and stage, and sparked civil rights activism in their work, respectively.
Currently, Hardwick is enjoying success in Ava DuVernay’s critically-acclaimed sophomore fictional drama Middle of Nowhere. You can also catch him in DuVernay’s directorial debut, I Will Follow, airing on BET.
Last year, Beharie received a boost in her notoriety in Steve McQueen’s Shame, opposite Michael Fassbender. And as we recently announced, she joined Olivia Wilde and Hailee Steifield in the Civil War drama, The Keeping Room, and will next be seen on the big screen playing Jackie Robinson's wife opposite Chadwick Boseman in 42.
She made her critically-acclaimed acting debut in American Violet, opposite Alfre Woodard, Tim Blake and Will Patton.
This year's Rising Star awards went to Meagan Good and David Oyelowo.
The Pan African Film Festival is gearing up for its 21st anniversary on February 7-18, 2013 at the new Rave Cinemas Baldwin Hills 15, at the Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza, in Los Angeles.
PAFF is one of the nation’s largest and most prestigious Black film festivals. Over the years, it has showcased films from all parts of the world, representing such countries as Angola, Austria, England, Bermuda, Canada, Egypt, Ethiopia, Brazil, Kenya, Mexico, South Africa, Nigeria, and of course, the United States. With the pulse on the international film market, PAFF has opened the minds of its audiences, and transported them to lands far away and back home again.
Currently, PAFF is accepting submissions of independent features, shorts, narratives and documentary films made by or about people of African descent.
For information about the festival, submission procedures, fees and registration, visit www.paff.org or call 310-337-4737.
Late submissions will be accepted until November 21, 2012.
Official selection announcements will be made beginning December 15, 2012, and of course we'll have them for you right here!
Congrats to Omari and Nicole for their 2013 honors.