Gabourey Sidibe will host season five of AfroPoP: The Ultimate Cultural Exchange documentary series (a series of independent films showcasing contemporary life and culture from across the African diaspora) which premieres nationally on PBS' World Channel on January 22, and will run weekly, through February 5.
Focusing on human and women's rights struggles this upcoming new season, Eliaichi Kimaro's A Lot Like You (a film covered here on S&A) will open season 5 of the series.
Kimaro is a first-generation American filmmaker, with a Korean mother and a Tanzanian father, in search of her roots, tracing her father's footsteps back to Mt. Kilimanjaro, where she discovers the beauty and brutality of the life he left behind (notably the sexual violence faced by women in her family and community), and translates that into her own personal legacy.
The 80-minute film screened as a work-in-progress at the San Diego Black Film Festival earlier this year, had its official world premiere at the Seattle International Film Festival in May, and later screened at the African Diaspora International Film Festival here in NYC, where I saw it.
Sidibe's duties as host of the series will be to intro each episode, working her own thoughts and point of view about the issues that will be at the center of each film screened.
"This season of AfroPoP helps give voice to those who truly need to be heard… I'm happy to help bring these stories to the American public and raise awareness of issues of vital concern to women and men in Africa as well as all who care about human rights," Sidibe said in a statement.
Currently, you can catch the Oscar-nominated actress on the big screen (as well as new on VOD) in Victoria Mahoney's Yelling to the Sky.
She most recently joined the cast of Gregg Araki's indie drama White Bird In A Blizzard.
AfroPoP is produced by the National Black Programming Consortium (NBPC) and distributed by American Public Television (APT).