Monday, October 6, 2008


I can't see enough documentaries, I going to try and see as much of this film festival as possible....

W E D N E S D A Y, 8Th OCT – M O N D A Y, 13th OCT 2008
A tribute to the Harlem-born activist and documentarian, St. Clair Bourne, showcasing Bourne’s work, Black Documentary Collective films and other historic documentary and narrative films celebrating New York’s Harlem and the African Diaspora.

MAYSLES INSTITUTE 127th & Malcolm X Blvd, Harlem

Wednesday, October 8th, 7:30 pm: Parts 1 & 2 (120 min)
Thursday, October 9th, 7:30 pm: Parts 3 & 4 (120 min)
“I Remember Harlem”
Dir. William Miles, 1980, 240 minutes
This four-hour special traces Harlem's 350-year history, evoking one of America's most vibrant and volatile communities. As a visual counterpart to the oral histories in the film, Miles unearthed old photographs and motion picture films and newsreel footage, much of it rare and never before seen on television.
*Director will attend Thursday’s screening.

Thursday, October 9th, 6pm
“Classified X”
Dir. Mark Daniels 1998, 50 minutes
Writer/Performer Melvin Van Peebles narrates this film by turning his insights and acid-dripped humor on Hollywood’s misuse of its sepia citizens. Classified X examines the treatment of black characters throughout the history of American cinema: from classic footage beginning with Thomas Edison in 1903 to the present, Van Peebles traces how Hollywood has aided and abetted the negative public perception of the African-American down through the years.

Thursday, October 9th, 7:30 pm: Parts 3 & 4 (120 min)
“I Remember Harlem”
Dir. William Miles, 1960, 240 minutes
(See above description)

FRIDAY OCTOBER 10th, 5:30-10:40
MAYSLES INSTITUTE 127th & Malcolm X Blvd, Harlem

“Owning The Oasis”
Dir. Chloe Walters Wallace, 2008, 17 minutes
What does it mean to own a home on a very unusual historic street in New York’s East Harlem? Owning the Oasis is an experience of life and philosophy on the extraordinary street of Sylvan Terrace, as portrayed by filmmaker and co-owner of #19 Sylvan Terrace, Chloe Walters Wallace.

Dir. Margaret Seescape, 2007, 23 minutes
After 23 years of work as an underpaid and under-employed baker, Adrienne Braxton wants a storefront of her own. Krumbs is a short documentary about Adrienne’s dream to create a future for her family out of Krumbs, a line of baked goods that she sells in Brooklyn.

“Black Woman”
Dir. Joyia D. Bradley, 2007, 9 minutes
A stylized homage to the Blaxploitation movies of the 70’s, “Black Woman” is a humorous social satire examining the different ways in which Black women are abused, taken for granted and disrespected on a daily basis.

"The Black American Experience In Harlem"
Dir. Raymond Dorante, 2008, 6 minutes
A short profile of then 99 year old, long-time Harlem resident Elyse White,
who passed unexpectedly after filming was completed.

“One People”
Dir. Al Santana, 2007. 32 Minutes
Two sisters with opposite views about social responsibility and the role of artists, challenge each other on the purity of art and the need for art to inspire social change. Together, against the backdrop of a rapidly gentrifying Harlem community, they discover a politicized Lorraine Hansberry.

“Hats By Bunn”
Dir. Charles Martin, 2007, 30 minutes
A documentary short about the fascinating business owner, Bunn, and his rare milliner’s art, but most importantly, about the aura and resonance of his hats, every one custom made in his Harlem shop.

“Guilded Six Bits”
Dir. Booker T. Madison, 2001, 29 minutes
An adaptation of Zora Neale Hurston's classic story starring Chad Coleman as Joe Banks- a simple, hard working family man, and T'Keyah Crystal Keymáh as his loving wife Missy Mae, a small town girl with big city dreams. It’s a story of a happy couple whose life is disrupted when a fancy hustler played by Wendell Pierce comes to town enticing Missy Mae with the promise of gold.

“110 Morningside”
Dir. Nicholle LaVann, 2005, 11 minutes
The film focuses on one Harlem apartment as a cultural place that attracts, poets, musicians and wanderers. The artists of 110 Morningside represent the radical, non-commercial, creative edge. They meet intimately in a living room and express their
1st amendment rights without fear of misrepresentation, censorship or racial bias.

“Double Dutch Divas”
Dir. Nicole Franklin, 2000, 49 minutes
The Double Dutch Divas-- with names like Spirit, Smooth, Faith, Heart, Spice, Joy, Sassy and Lady Di-- are the core of a team that has mastered the art of jumping and dancing double Dutch during their twenty years together. They are a real life example of sisterhood at its best.

“Marcus Garvey-Look For Me In The Whirlwind”
Dir. Stanley Nelson, 2001, 90 Minutes
In just ten years following his emigration to the United States as a laborer in 1917, Marcus Garvey rose to lead the largest black organization in history, was taken to prison in handcuffs, and was eventually deported. Marcus Garvey is the dramatic story of the rise and fall of an African American leader who influenced politics and culture around the world.

MEDGAR EVERS COLLEGE, 1650 Bedford Ave., Brooklyn

Dir. Faith Pennick, 2008, 30 minutes excerpt
"Silent Choices" is a hybrid documentary with historical, social, religious and first person narrative about abortion and its impact on the lives of African American women.

“The Old Man And The Storm” W/T “To Have Not And To Hold”
Producer June Cross, 2008, 56 minutes
Producer June Cross follows the Gettridge family clan as they struggle to rebuild their lives in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. The film explores the limits of the free market system and traces the loss of the American Dream for a family that did everything right, now has little to show for it, yet refuses to be defeated in New Orleans.

“DISAPPEARING VOICES: The Decline of Black Radio “
Dir. U-Savior, 2008, 64 minutes
A historical overview of Black radio’s rise and demise featuring legendary Black Jocks: personalities like Frankie “Hollywood” Crocker, Hal Jackson, Eddie O’Jay, Jocko Henderson, Jack “The Rapper” Gibson, Gerry Bledsoe and "The Mad Lad" E. Rodney Jones. The film is written and narrated by veteran radio personality Bob Law.
“Then I’ll Be Free To Travel Home: The Legacy of the New York African
Burial Ground” Dir. Eric V. Tait, Jr, 2000, 86 minutes
From the 1620s to the 1860s, tracing Simon Congo and Susanna Anthony Roberts to Crispus Attucks, Colonel Tye and others, this documentary tells the heroic struggle and contributions of the Africans who rose from slavery to influence the development of this nation from it's earliest Colonial days.

Dir. Woodie King, Jr., 2007, 90 minutes
A Black "concept" essay-documentary dealing with segregation in World War II seen through the eyes of 16 participants between the ages of 70 and 90. The film features Camille Billops, Ossie Davis, James V. Hatch, Gertrude Jeannette, Don Ryder, Luther Henderson, Clara Villarosa, William Greaves, Dr. Roscoe Brown, Natsu Ifill, and others.

Dir. Pete Chatmon, 2007, 72 minutes
What the Tuskegee Airmen were to the skies, the 761st Tank Battalion was to land, and they were requested by General George S. Patton to assist with heavy fighting during the Battle of the Bulge in WWII.

“Daughters of the Wind"
Dir. Joel Zito Araujo, 2004, 85 minutes
A tale about redemption between sisters, mothers, and daughters,telling the stories of three female protagonists, traversing back and forth between contemporary time and the 1960s and ‘70s. Mr. Araújo has assembled a multigenerational cast of talented black actors to explore the obstacles facing black performers in Brazil's film and television industries.

“Twelve Disciples of Nelson Mandela”
Dir. Thomas Allan Harris, 2006, 75 minutes
As part of the first wave of black South African exiles, Harris's stepfather, B. Pule Leinaeng, and his 11 comrades left their home in Bloemfontein, South Africa in 1960. They told the world about the brutality of the apartheid system and raised support for the fledgling African National Congress and its leader, Nelson Mandela.

SUNDAY, OCTOBER 12TH, 12:00 PM – 8:00 PM
MAYSLES INSTITUTE 127th & Malcolm X Blvd, Harlem

12:00 – 1:30pm
Sam Pollard’s video tribute to St. Claire Bourne-12N00N

Panel: The Impact of St. Clair Bourne’s Life and Work-12:10pm-1:30pm
Moderator: Michelle Materre
Panelists: Pearl Bowser, William Greaves, Jacquie Jones , Bobby Shepard
(See below for Bios)

Film Screenings: 1:40 pm – 8:00 pm
“Harlem Renaissance”
Dir. Bill Greaves (2008), 20 minute Excerpt of a Work In Progress.

“Black Journal Excerpts”
St. Claire Bourne worked as producer, writer and director for Black Journal, the first one-hour monthly national Black public affairs documentary series produced by the National Educational Television network.
1. Malcolm X Liberation University, 10 minutes
The birth of a radical Black college in North Carolina
2. Soul, Sounds and Money, 25 minutes
A musical documentary featuring Smokey Robinson, Gladys Knight and The Pips, Isaac Hayes, filmed in Hollywood, New York and Memphis.
3. Black Cop , 10 minutes
A look at African-American police on the Los Angeles Police Department and their feelings about their work, their relations with the Black community and other white officers. Produced for KCET-TV.

"Statues Hardly Ever Smile"
A Chamba Production, 1970, 20 minutes
St Clair Bourne, Stan Lathan, Kent Garret and Charles Hobeson.
A group of African-American children experience African culture moving among ancient art objects and interacting through a storyteller. Shot on location in the Brooklyn Museum. Print courtesy of ADI /CEFS (African Diaspora Images formerly Chamba Educational Film Services)

“The Black And The Green”
Dir. St. Clair Bourne, 1982, 30 minutes (the actual film is 42 mins)
A narrative documentary chronicling a trip to Belfast, Northern Ireland by five Black American activists.

Making “Do the Right Thing"(pending approval)
Dir. St. Clair Bourne, 1989, 60 minutes
A narrative documentary about the making of Spike Lee's feature film Do the Right Thing in Brooklyn, NY.

"John Henrik Clarke: A Great And Mighty Walk”,
Dir. St. Clair Bourne, 1996, 95 minutes
A feature-length documentary about the life and times of the Pan-African scholar/activist. Executive produced and narrated by Wesley Snipes.

“When the Spirits Dance Mambo” (Excerpt)
Dir. Bobby Shepard, 2003, 30 minutes
When the Spirits Dance Mambo is an open invitation to feel the power of African sacred spirits from ritual to popular New York and Cuban stages. A tapestry of historical information, sites and sounds traveling from past to present documenting the continuing power of ancestral cultural traditions.

“Namibia: Independence Now!”
Producers Pearl Bowser and Alan Segal, 1985, 55 minutes
The film is shot on location under protection of SWAPO and the UN Council for Namibia documenting the Namibian government in exile, and its people in the struggle for liberation from South Africa.

Michelle Materre
Assistant Professor of Media Studies and Film at the New School University, President of Materre Media Consulting, Ms. Materre’s professional background spans years in television, film and video with a concentration on independent film. She has worked in myriad capacities in the nonprofit and commercial entertainment industry as a producer, writer, arts administrator, strategic advisor, outreach consultant, distribution/marketing specialist and educator.

Pearl Bowser, is a film scholar, author, and consultant specializing in independent African-American cinema. In 1972, she joined the Chamba production group setting-up Chamba Educational Film Services, now ADI/CEFS, collection of films, photographs, posters, oral histories and memorabilia documenting the history of African-American filmmaking. She served as festival curator for touring independent African-American cinema from 1972 - 2004, and she has served on numerous international festival juries, as well as a visiting film scholar. Her producer credits included "Midnight Ramble: Oscar Micheaux and the story of race movies", "Namibia: Independence Now!"; and, as associate producer on "Mississippi Triangle", and, "To Love, Honor, and Obey." CEFS was the first to distribute and tour films from the African Diaspora in the United States.

William Greaves, one of the most respected independents in the film and television production field, has enjoyed success within the full spectrum of the entertainment arts as, variously, a producer, director, writer, editor, cameraman, actor, dancer, drama teacher and song writer. Hailed as a "Renaissance man" and as "a thoroughly original multi-faceted American artist," Greaves has produced and directed four feature films and produced scores of documentary films and television programs. His films have won more than 70 international film festival awards, an Emmy and four Emmy nominations. Greaves, who is considered to be the dean of African-American filmmakers, has helped to launch the careers of many African-American filmmakers.

Jacquie Jones - Executive Director, National Black Programming Consortium (NBPC), is an award-winning writer, director and producer of documentary films. In addition to her filmmaking, she is a widely published critic of popular culture and was formerly the editor of the internationally respected journal, Black Film Review. Jacquie holds a BA in English from Howard University and an MA in documentary filmmaking from Stanford University.

Bobby Shepard, Producer/Cinematographer of “When The Spirits Dance Mambo” Shepard, an award-winning director of photography, has more than 200 production credits in documentary, dramatic, commercial and sports cinematography since 1975. His awards include IMPACT Repertory Theatre’s Dreamkeeper award (2003); International Black Panther Film Festival for Courage, Vision and Commitment (2000); National Black Programming Consortium’s Oscar Micheaux Award for his “passion, perseverance, vision and pioneering spirit” (1997); L.A.S.A. Award of Merit (Puerto Rico, 1997) for “Nicaragua: In the Absence of Peace”; an Emmy nomination for cinematography for “Beyond the Altar,” which won the best documentary Emmy (1985).

MONDAY, OCTOBER 13TH 2008, 12:00pm – 10:00pm
MAGIC/AMC THEATRES 124th St. & Frederick Douglass Blvd, Harlem

12:00 -1:30 pm

Panel: Pioneers Who Changed the Hollywood Stereotypes: The New York-
Hollywood Connection
Moderator: Gil Noble
Panelists: Woodie King Jr., Douglas Turner Ward, and Clyde Taylor
(See Bios Below)

Film Screenings 1:40p – 7:40pm
“The Long Night”
Dir. Woodie King, Jr., 1975, 85 minutes
Steely Brown, a young teen-ager whose father, a Vietnam vet walks out on Steely's mother. In one long night, Steely roams the streets of Harlem recalling events that led up to his father's disappearance. Produced by Woodie King, Jr. and St. Clair Bourne.
Dir. Jules Dassein, 1968, 85 minutes
A group of black militants, on the night following the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King (documentary footage included), stage a robbery of a gun and ammunition warehouse, in the course of which a guard is shot. Tank, an unemployed steel worker is driven by his own confusion and loss to turn in a murderer.

“Buck And The Preacher”
Dir. Sidney Poitier, 1972, 102 minutes
Set during the end of the Civil War, Sidney Poitier stars as Buck, an ex-Army soldier who is scouting sites for the former slaves that want to settle out West. Buck meets up with the Preacher (Harry Belafonte), who is really a con man in disguise. Although they don't get along at first, they eventually team up against a murderous gang of outlaws. Also starring Ruby Dee.
Awards Presentation: 7:45p – 8:20pm
Outstanding Humanitarian Award - Harry Belafonte
Lifetime Achievement Award in Film and Theatre- Ruby Dee
Independent Cinema Pioneer Award- Melvin Van Peebles
LIifetime Visual Documenting the African Diaspora - St. Clair Bourne (Received by St. Claire Bourne’s sister, Judy Bourne)

Closing Reception: 8:30 – 10:00pm
Monday evening October 13th, for our Honorees, Special Guests, collaborators and volunteers, at Londel’s Restaurant, Strivers Row, Harlem (Frederick Douglass Boulevard btw 139th-140th Sts.)

Gil Noble, (Moderator) is producer and host of WABC-TV's weekly public affairs series, Like It Is. His work as a journalist endeavors to bring to light the struggle of African Americans, Africans, and the African Diaspora historically and currently. Mr. Noble is known for his serious, consistently high quality discussions and programming, conveying an African-American perspective on current and past events. His wide-ranging interviews and subjects have included the Middle East, the Caribbean, Blaxploitation Films, Gentrification in Harlem, Malcolm X, Harry Belafonte, Robert Mugabe, Bob Marley, Oscar Peterson, and a host of others. A former Weekend Anchor of WABC-TVs Eyewitness News, since 1986 Mr. Noble has concentrated his journalistic efforts exclusively on Like It Is.

Woodie King, Jr., a veteran writer/producer/director, King founded the New Federal Theatre (NFT) in 1970. King’s vision and the NFT mission “ is to integrate minorities and women into the mainstream of American theatre by training artists for the profession, and by presenting plays by minorities and women to integrated, multicultural audiences- plays which evoke the truth through beautiful and artistic re-creations of ourselves.” Notable NFT alumni include such playwrights as: J.e Franklin, Ed Bullins, Amiri Baraka, Ntozake Shange, David Henry Hwang, and several others. Actors as Jackée Harry, Morgan Freeman, Denzel Washington, Debbie Allen, Phylicia Rashad, Glynn Turman, Samuel L. Jackson, Laurence Fishburne, Robert Downey, Jr., Lynn Whitfield, Ruby Dee, Leslie Uggams, Ella Joyce and so many more have performed in NFT productions. Among Mr. King’s film projects are the 2007 documentary “Segregating The Greatest Generation” and the 1976 feature film “The Long Night” which he produced with St. Clair Bourne.

Professor Clyde R. Taylor, noted film scholar and literary/cultural analyst is an Africana Studies Professor at the Gallatin School, New York University.
Among his many renowned literary and other works are “Mask of Art”
“Vietnam and Black America” and the script for “Midnight Ramble” the Pearl Bowser documentary about Oscar Micheaux and Black independent cinema.
To quote Amiri Baraka, “Clyde Taylor is one of thr most intellectually stimulating and readable cultural analysts writing. His intrepid and penetrating rationals and and summations of a whole host of registrations in the world of ideas, particularly of their aesthetic presumptions, are always fascinating, and deeply thoughtful, whether one absolutely agrees with him or not. Taylor is must reading for those who take the world seriously.”

Douglas Turner Ward, dramatist, actor, director, and producer. Ward was cofounder along with actor-director Robert Hooks and Off-Broadway producer Gerald A. Krone of the Negro Ensemble Company (NEC) in 1965. NEC produced a number of notable works including The River Niger and A Soldier's Play which Hollywood then turned into “A Soldiers Story.” Throughout his theatrical career, and in the choice of plays and styles of production, Ward has created a repertory that presents world-class drama primarily focused on African American themes. As a playwright, he is perhaps best known for his controversial one-act plays, Happy Ending and Day of Absence. Since the 1960s, the African American dramatic literature and aesthetic philosophy of Douglas Turner Ward have been highly influential. Guided by a burning desire to continue the legacy of W. E. B. Du Bois, Ward has consistently created theater primarily written by, performed for, and representative of African American people.

Note: Directors/Some performers will attend their screenings as their schedules

Directions, screening locations:
Maysles Institute movie theater at
343 Lenox Avenue/Malcolm X Boulevard, NYC
(between 127th and 128th. # 2/3, 4,5,6, A,B,C,D to 125th street), 212-582-6050 ext. 218
Medgar Evers College Founders Auditorium
1650 Bedford Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11225
Take the #2, 3, 4 or 5 train to the Franklin Ave. stop.
The auditorium is between Crown & Montgomery Sts.
AMC MJ Harlem
2309 Frederick Douglas Blvd, New York, NY 10027 212.665.6923
Take the A,B,C,D to125th Street.