For those of you in New York City, here’s a film festival event to add to your November calendar… full details via press release below:
The African-American Women in Cinema announced today the FULL LINE-UP of this year’s 17th Annual AFRICAN-AMERICAN WOMEN IN CINEMA FILM FESTIVAL (November 19th – 22nd), which features an opening night premiere and reception, keynote panels, additional premiere screenings, a youth filmmaking event, and a short films program. The films chosen for this year’s festival are judged by a jury committee made up of prominent industry leaders, who adhere to the organization’s mission statement of promoting films from African American, Latina, Native American and the Asian diaspora. AAWIC is the only film festival in New York City with such a wide multicultural reach.
The Opening Night selection is the New York premiere of Princess Monique’s SEASON OF LOVE. Starring Gladys Knight, Taraji P. Henson, Method Man and LeToya Luckett, the film follows one couple’s romantic ups and downs, as they struggle to determine the things that matter most in life. The film also features Ana Isabella, a rising star from Puerto Rico. The film is a Lifetime Studios production and will premiere on Lifetime on November 23rd.
AAWIC is also pleased to announce the premiere event entitled INTERNATIONAL DAY presented by UNESCO NYS and African Women For Good Governance on November 22nd. There will be a panel discussion called Discussing the African Film Industry moderated by Winsome Sinclair (prominent casting director). Following the discussion there will be a special presentation organized by African Women For Good Governance and later a film screening hosted by producer Mohamed Dione.
The festival will close with an awards VIP reception that will take place at the United Nations and the Nigerian Embassy, respectively. The President of African Women For Good Governance and Ambassador of UNESCO, Sire Dione Conde, expressed her excitement for the festival, stating, “We are pleased to be a part of such a prestigious festival that celebrates women in the industry and are very happy to present the first ever International Day! We look forward to making history together.”
Below are the full program details:
Opening Night Selection
SEASON OF LOVE
Director: Princess Monique
Closing Night Selection 1 (hosted by 103.9 FM)
THE GRAND GESTURE
Director: Dana Verde
Closing Night Selection 2 (hosted by 103.9 FM)
Director: Nelcie Souffrant
Closing Night Selection 3 (hosted by 103.9 FM)
On My Own
Director: Rachel Miller-Bradshaw
Afraid of Dark
Director: Mya B.
Christmas Wedding Baby
Director: Kiara Jones
Director: Valerie Red-Horse
Hate Crimes in the Heartland
Director: Rachel Lyon
Our Closing Night Screenings are hosted by 103.9 FM and are composed of both short and feature-length films. There is a Q&A session with the filmmakers following the screening of CHRISTMAS WEDDING BABY and NATURALLY NATIVE.
Director: Jamie Burton-Oare
Synopsis: Two kids, who grew up in the same neighborhood where one bullied the other, have children later in life. Their children are now in the same situation as their parents, but the outcome is different.
Director: Sandra Nixon
Synopsis: Have you ever wonder what the nail technicians are talking about, while you were getting your manicure & pedicure? This short comedy depicts how a normal day at a nail salon turns out to be an amusing experience….when you get past the language barrier.
Lift Every Voice
Director: Monet Gray
Synopsis: This film examines how one teacher’s unconventional method of incorporating RAP and HIP-HOP music into her lessons was able to get her public school students motivated and interested in their education.
Buenos Aires Rap
Director: Diane Ghogomu
Synopsis: In a cosmopolitan city where class and color segregation are the norms, a group of minority kids are brought together through a shared love of music transcending that of political and economical deviations.
Director: Ah-Keisha McCants
Synopsis: Film follows eight-year-old twin boys from the New Jersey suburbs, who appear to be raising themselves in the absence of their parents. They both yearn for an escape, but it soon becomes apparent that “nobody and nothing is what it seems”.
Director: Tanesa Kassa
Synopsis: Monica Jones, a secretary at a law firm attending law school, is dedicated to her relationship with blue-collared and workaholic boyfriend, Darius Smith. The same can’t be said of Darius whose busy schedule has turned the relationship dull. This is their commitment story.
Director: Ashley Ellis
Synopsis: After the funeral for Eric Ross, family and friends gather at the home of his mother to find comfort and answers. While his mother tries her best to hold on to the gleaming image she had of her son, the elusive answers to the cause of his mysterious death are finally brought to light in an explosive confrontation with someone from their past.
Each year, AAWIC invites key industry players to participate in provocative panel discussions on the nature of the business and the course of African-American cinema in mainstream media. This year, no less, AAWIC offers an array of stimulating film conversations that make up the PANELS PROGRAM.
Diversity in the Guilds
Discussion will be around the various diversity initiatives of each organization and how attendees can benefit from joining them.
Female Documentary Filmmakers – Keynote Panel
Choose To Live!
Presented by the American Diabetes Association
NY Loves Film Roundtable Discussion
Given by NYS Governor’s Office for Motion Picture & Television Development Empire State Development
Presentation: SKY Financial Group LLC|SKY Brokerage LLC
Meet the Distributors!
Let’s Talk Finance!
How to Get Your Kids in Show Business
Screening of Our Youth: Presented by DCTV
The annual film festival highlights the best in African American cinema, featuring works from independent filmmakers as well as fresh new talent. AAWIC founder and executive producer, Terra Renee, exclaims, “I am very pleased about this year’s event. Our goal has always been to take this festival to the next level. I believe this year will set the stage and we will make history.” This year, the festival producer is Lamonia Brown, a prominent industry veteran.
Advance all-access passes are currently available through online purchase via aawic.org. There will also be an opportunity to purchase single screening and panel discussion tickets. More ticket information for the 17th African-American Women in Cinema Film Festival is available at aawic.org/purchase-tickets.
AFRICAN AMERICAN WOMEN IN CINEMA
The African American Women in Cinema Film Festival is one of the largest female film events in the country. For the past decade, the AAWIC organization has served as a continuous support for the vibrant work of women filmmakers. The organization is dedicated to providing a platform and showcase for aligning experienced and novice filmmakers, directors, producers, screenwriters and/or actors. Its mission is to expand, explore and create business opportunities for minority women filmmakers throughout the entertainment industry. It is the goal of AAWIC to give artistic women a path to fulfilling their dreams through showcasing their talents, exposure to peers’ interaction, and mentoring by established professionals.
This year, AAWIC receives generous support from Raymour & Flanigan, 103.9 FM, Greater New York Chamber of Commerce, New York Women in Film & Television, National Urban League, Demetrix, DCTV, Sky Financial, Tinkerer Studios, Rx Pharmacy, and Media Services. For more information, visit www.aawic.org and follow @aawic on Twitter.