The 30th Pan African Film & Arts Festival Announces Competition Selections

International Black Film Festival to Feature 55 World Premiere Titles

Ledisi and Columbus Short as Mahalia Jackson and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in Remember Me.
Ledisi and Columbus Short as Mahalia Jackson and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in Remember Me.

Today, the 30th Pan African Film & Arts Festival (PAFF) announced its film nominations in its prestigious juried competition. Forty-four films are included in six competitions this year.

This year’s film roster reflects the times we are in,” said PAFF General Manager Asantewe Olatunji. “Many focus on social justice issues such as gender equality, police and community relations, and the changing lifestyle norms. Of course, several of the PAFF 2022 films focus on our well-known and sometimes obscure sheroes and heroes whose stories told by their own people give a new perspective of history and view of our world.”

PAFF is the largest Black film festival in America taking place April 19 - May 1, 2022. This year the Festival will make its return to the Cinemark Baldwin Hills for in-person screenings, featuring over 200 films from 55 countries, in 18 languages, including 58 World and 32 North American premieres.  Of the films selected for the Festival, 46% are helmed by female, queer or non-binary filmmakers, and 80% are directed by filmmakers of African descent.  Many titles will also be available virtually for in-home screenings via the Festival’s streaming platform Eventive to audiences worldwide.  The Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza will once again host its renowned Artfest, featuring over 100 established and emerging fine artists and quality craftspeople from all over the Black Diaspora.  

Check out PAFF’’s competing films by clicking the names of the titles below.

*Denotes films available for viewing through PAFF press screenings for credentialed media.

Best First Feature Narrative

A Brother’s Whisper*  (US)
Bantú Mama  (Dominican Republic)
Get Out Alive*  (US)
Juwaa* (Belgium)
Queen of Glory*  (US)
Remember Me: The Mahalia Jackson Story (US)

Best First Feature Documentary

Africa and I*  (South Africa)
Conversations: The Black Radical Tradition* (US)
Fanon (Algeria)
Subjects of Desire (Canada)
Broken Chains (Singapore)
The Rumba Kings (Peru)

Best Feature Narrative

 Ayinla (Nigeria)
Hairareb (Namibia)
Lingui, the Sacred Bonds (Chad)
Parsley (Dominican Republic)
Tug of War (Zanzibar)

Best Feature Documentary

African Redemption: The Life and Legacy of Marcus Garvey*  (US/Jamaica)
Buddy Guy: The Blues Chase the Blues Away* (US)
Grandpa Was an Emperor (US/Ethiopia)
Race Today (UK)
Why Is We Americans? (US)

Best Short Documentary

Cuba In Africa (US/Cuba)
David Dinkins: A Gorgeous Mosaic (US)
For Love and Legacy (US)
I Am More Than My Hair (US)
Jumping Into Fire (US)
Miss Panama (US/Panama)
There’s Your Ready Girl (US)

Best Short Narrative

Alone Together (US)
Astel (Senegal)
Break-up In Love (US)
Cracked (US)
Cupids (P&G Short) (US)
Famadihana - Reunion
Here (US)
Leaving Isiolo (Kenya)
Lock Off (UK)
Mass Avenue (US)
Pink & Blue (US)
Sins of the Father (US)
Slow Pulse (US)
Sungara (Kenya)
The Last Days (UK)

*Denotes films available for viewing through PAFF press screenings for credentialed media.

PAFF30 ASSETS
https://www.paff.org/pressroom/

MEDIA CONTACT
press@paff.org 

Festival Sponsors and Partners

PAFF is sponsored in part by the City of Los Angeles, the Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs, Los Angeles County Supervisor Holly J. Mitchell through the Department of Arts and Culture, LA Councilmember Marqueece Harris-Dawson, LA Councilmember Curren Price, LA Councilmember Herb Wesson, the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences, LA Arts COVID-19 Relief Fund with the California Community Foundation, and the LA County COVID-19 Arts Relief Fund administered by the LA County Department of Arts and Culture.

The 30th Pan African Film & Arts Festival's sponsors include Major Festival Sponsors: Stocker Street Creative, FX Networks, and Glassdoor.

About the Pan African Film Festival  

Established in 1992 by Hollywood veterans Danny Glover (The Color Purple, Lethal Weapon), the late Ja'Net DuBois ("Good Times"), and Ayuko Babu (Executive Director), the Pan African Film Festival is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that has remained dedicated to the promotion of Black stories and images through the exhibition of film, visual art, and other creative expression. PAFF is one of the largest and most prestigious Black film festival in the U.S. and attracts local, national, and international audiences. In addition, it is an Oscar qualifying festival for animation and live-action films, and one of the largest Black History Month events in America.   

Watch New Clip Now! Escape The Field” U.S. Release May 6, In Select Theaters, On Digital and On Demand

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Cast: Jordan Claire Robbins, Theo Rossi, Tahirah Sharif, Julian Feder, Elena Juatco, and Shane West
Directed by: Emerson Moore
Written by: Emerson Moore and Joshua Dobkin & Sean Wathen
Produced by: Andrew Davies Gans, Michael Philip, Jason Moring, Emerson Moore
Genre: Thriller
Rating: R
Running Time: 1 hour 28 minutes

"Escape The Field"

U.S Release Date May 6, 2022, in  Select Theaters, On Digital and On Demand

Cities: New York (Cinema Village), Los Angeles (Lumiere Cinema), and key cities nationwide.

The fear is inescapable and the suspense nonstop in this gripping horror-thriller about six strangers who suddenly awaken in a remote, endless cornfield. Stripped of their possessions, they are left with only six items: a gun with a single bullet, matches, a lantern, a knife, a compass, and a flask of water. As mysterious sirens blare in the distance and traps appear at every turn, the group realizes it’s been plunged into a cat-and-mouse game with an unseen evil, and survival depends upon solving a diabolical — and deadly — puzzle.

Lionsgate presents, an Anacapa Pictures and CR8IV DNA production, in association with Ingenious Media / Double Dutch International / Glanzrock Productions / Stormchaser Films / Richmond Pictures / LipSync.

Official Site: https://www.lionsgate.com/movies/escape-the-field

Lionsgate Publicity Site: https://www.lionsgatepublicity.com/specialty-release/escape-the-field

Instagram:@EscapeTheFieldMovie

IMAGES OF A NORDIC DRAMA will have its International Premiere at HOT DOCS 2022

Hot Docs 2022 Logo

HOT DOCS 2022  IMAGES OF A NORDIC DRAMA
(Section: Artscapes)
INTERNATIONAL PREMIERE 

Director: Nils Gaup
Producer: Linn Henriksen
Running Time: 1 hour 11 minutes
Language: English, German, Norwegian
Country: Norway, Germany (Feature Documentary)

IOAND (Photo Credit_ Paranord Film)
IOAND (Photo Credit_ Paranord Film)

HOT DOCS 2022 FESTIVAL SCREENINGS: PUBLIC SCREENINGS:

Saturday, April 30 at 11:30am
Location: Varsity 8 (55 Bloor Street West)
Thursday, May 5 at 8:45pm
Location: Varsity 8 (55 Bloor Street West)
*Also available for online festival access.

IOAND (Photo Credit_ Paranord Film)
IOAND (Photo Credit_ Paranord Film)

A persistent art collector (Haakon Mehren) faces unexpected resistance while championing the work of an unknown Norwegian artist after finding a cache of paintings in a barn. Despite success abroad, the undiscovered work of Aksel Waldemar Johannessen, an admired contemporary of Edvard Munch, takes nearly three decades to launch. The painter's oil depictions of prostitutes and drunks living in miserable poverty offend the bourgeois aesthetics of Norway's art establishment and challenge the canon to the point of sabotaging his rediscovery. Will rejection by the curatorial staff at the National Museum and gatekeepers of the Munch Museum diminish Johannessen's work? An invaluable insight into art world politics, cultural institutions' ties to big business and the power of exposure, IMAGES OF A NORDIC DRAMA shows Johannessen's pieces repetitively throughout the film, to the point of familiarity, to demonstrate how contact with works of art cultivate appreciation and memorability, and how essential access is to making or breaking an audience for an artist's oeuvre.

NILS GAUP was born in Kautokeino, Northern-Norway in 1955. Gaup is an award-winning screenwriter and director with over 30 years of experience from filmmaking. His first feature film PATHFINDER (1987) was nominated for an Academy Award.  

Since then, he has made numerous feature films, with IMAGES OF A NORDIC DRAMA, being his first documentary. 

HOT DOCS 2022 Link to buy tickets:  https://hotdocs.ca/whats-on/hot-docs-festival/films/2022/images-of-a-nordic-drama

@hotdocs #HotDocs22

THE PAN AFRICAN FILM & ARTS FESTIVAL PRESENTS ITS NEW ART PROGRAM, “ALL ARTISTS HAVE A SEAT AT THE TABLE,” SPONSORED BY IKEA  

World-Renowned Artists Have Transformed IKEA Dining Pieces into One-of-a-Kind Designs in Celebration of 30 Years of PAFF 

PAFF30_LOGO

The Pan African Film & Arts Festival (PAFF) is proud to present, “All Artists Have a Seat at the Table,” a new and innovative art program sponsored by IKEA in celebration of 30 Years of PAFF. Under the direction of PAFF's Art Director, Allohn Agbenya, five esteemed artists are contributing their creativity to revamp an IKEA dining set. The furniture has been transformed into individual pieces of art inspired by the theme: PAFF 30, PAFF Roots. The pieces were previously on display at four IKEA stores throughout Southern California and will be viewable at the Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza, April 21 - May 1st.

Marc Brogdon, Marketing Director for PAFF stated, “One of my favorite African Proverbs says, ‘A tree’s beauty lies in its branches, but its strength lies in its roots.’ Utilizing our artists and IKEA wooden furniture to create powerful artwork is the perfect symbolism of our deep-rooted connection to the community.”

“All Artists Have a Seat at the Table,” is a celebration of PAFF and the artistry showcased over the years. For more than three decades, PAFF has united folks across the diaspora—creating an inspiring platform for the partnership with IKEA. “The dining table is the universal space for gathering, our sustainable and accessible furniture provided the perfect blank slate for the artists to illustrate PAFF’s rich legacy and commitment to bringing people together to share the Black experience.” Kevin Matthews, Regional Marketing Manager at IKEA U.S. shared. “As the leader in life at home, we want to celebrate the importance of home and the role it plays for the many. This work naturally demonstrates our core value of togetherness in a vibrant and unique way.”

“As a curator and art director, I selected artists for the IKEA Project whose works of art present an array of diasporic characteristics that borrow from the broad field that is our celebrated history & traditions,” said Allohn Agbenya, PAFF Art Director. “Africa and her global artistic roots and outreach have been influential on every continent. Rich in texture, proverbial wisdom, beauty, and evolutionary flow.”

Participating Artists:

  • Allohn Agbenya (PAFF Art Director)
    Allohn Agbenya is a contemporary artist whose roots celebrate the fibers and cultural pride of West Africa and beyond! Born in Ghana, Agbenya now resides in Los Angeles and is the Production Designer for PAFF as well as the Director/Curator for the ArtFest.
  • Sandra Zebi
    Sandra Zebi is an artist from Sao Paulo, Brazil and came to Los Angeles in 1986, intrigued and inspired by the cultural diversity that the city has to offer.
  • Marvin Obasogie Aimiuwu (MOA)
    MOA started drawing and painting as a child in Nigeria, studied fine art in college, and has pursued artwork full time since coming to the United States.
  • Aziz Diagne
    Aziz Diagne is a multi-media artist from Senegal, West Africa. He grew up amid the traditional art forms of his homeland including rock carving, ceramic and wood sculpture, murals, tapestry, and Thiesoise (reverse painting on glass).
  • Charles A. Bibbs
    A native son of Southern California, Charles Bibbs is an internationally acclaimed artist, entrepreneur, and philanthropist who has made a significant impact on contemporary arts.

The full program for the 30th annual Pan African Film and Arts Festival will take place in person and virtually, April 19 - May 1, in Los Angeles at its flagship venues the Directors Guild of America, Cinemark Baldwin Hills and XD and Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza.

About IKEA
At IKEA, the vision is to create a better everyday life for the many people by offering well-designed, functional and affordable, high-quality home furnishing, produced with care for people and the environment. Ingka Group (Ingka Holding B.V. and its controlled entities) is one of 12 different groups of companies that own and operate IKEA retail under franchise agreements with Inter IKEA Systems B.V. Ingka Group has three business areas: IKEA Retail, Ingka Investments and Ingka Centres. Ingka Group is a strategic partner in the IKEA franchise system, operating 389 IKEA stores in 32 countries – including 52 retail locations in the U.S.

For more information on IKEA U.S., see IKEA-USA.com@IKEAUSANews@IKEAUSA or IKEAUSA on FacebookYouTubeInstagram and Pinterest.

About the Pan African Film & Arts Festival

Established in 1992 by Hollywood veterans Danny Glover (The Color Purple, Lethal Weapon), the late Ja'Net DuBois ("Good Times"), and Ayuko Babu (Executive Director), the Pan African Film Festival is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that has remained dedicated to the promotion of Black stories and images through the exhibition of film, visual art, and other creative expression. Every year, hundreds of filmmakers, fine artists, and unique craftspeople from more than 40 countries and six continents converge in Los Angeles to showcase their work. Annually, PAFF showcases more than 190 new high-quality Black films from the United States, Africa, the Caribbean, South America, Europe, the South Pacific, Canada and increasingly, Asia. Most importantly, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) has designated PAFF as an official qualifying film festival for live action and animation short films.

PAFF is the largest and most prestigious Black film festival in the U.S. and attracts local, national, and international audiences. It is also one of America's largest Black History Month events.

For more information, please visit https://www.paff.org/seatatthetable

Find the Pan African Film Festival on: Twitter: https://twitter.com/paffnow
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/paffnow  Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/paffnow
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/ThePanAfricanFilmFestival

CHRISTOPHER LLOYD AND RACHAEL LEIGH COOK GET INTO “SPIRIT HALLOWEEN”

The Strike Back Studios, Hideout Pictures and Particular Crowd production, described as the ultimate family/kids adventure film, is eyeing an October 2022 release.

(Los Angeles, CAApril 11, 2022) Strike Back Studios and Hideout Pictures continue their busy production schedule in 2022 having wrapped principal photography of “Spirit Halloween.” When a new Spirit Halloween store appears in a deserted strip mall, three middle school friends who think they’ve outgrown trick or treating make a dare to spend the night locked inside the store Halloween night. But they soon find out that the store is haunted by an angry evil spirit who has possessed the creepy animatronic characters. The kids embark on a thrilling and spooky adventure in order to survive the night and avoid becoming possessed themselves.

After a nationwide search the production found a group young up & coming actors to round out the cast including Donavan Colan (“Zoe,” “Getaway”), Dylan Martin Frankel (“Raven’s Home,” “Life & Beth”), Jaiden Smith (“Blue Bloods,” “The Mothership”), and Marissa Reyes (“Raven’s Home”).The film also offers audiences a cast filled with beloved veteran actors including Rachael Leigh Cook (“He’s All That,” “Love, Guaranteed”), Christopher Lloyd (“The Tender Bar”, “Back to the Future Trilogy,”) and Marla Gibbs (“El Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie, “227”).

“One of the reasons I immediately connected with the script is it is very much inspired by some of my favorite kid adventure films growing up from “The Goonies,” “Gremlins,” “Monster Squad” and so many great films made by Amblin Entertainment” said Noor Ahmed president of Strike Back Studios.  Strike Back Studios and Hideout Pictures also recently wrapped production on “Asleep In My Palm” starring Tim Blake Nelson in February, which also saw in February the release of Hideout Pictures production of “Ted K” by Neon.  Hideout Pictures is best known for their critically acclaimed western “Old Henry” released in October of 2021.

The production is a collaboration between Hideout Pictures & Particular Crowd in association with Film Mode Entertainment. The feature film is directed by David Poag and written by Billie Bates.  Produced by Noor Ahmed and Shannon Houchins, with Tomás’ Yanelevich, Peter Bevan, Mariana Sanjurjo and Clay Epstein executive producing. The production also formed a promotional partnership for the film with Spirit Halloween, with has over 1,425 locations across North America

Rachael Leigh Cook is represented by A3 Artists Agency and Fuller LawChristopher Lloyd is represented by The Gersh Agency and Andrew Freeman Personal ManagerMarla Gibbs is represented by Momentum Talent & Literary AgencyDonavan Colan is represented by Carson-Adler Agency and Sky Talent GroupDylan Martin Frankel is represented by CESD Talent AgencyConnecting Talent Company and Innovative ArtistsJaiden Smith is represented by CESD Talent Agency; Marissa Reyes is represented by Stewart Talent and The Michael Abrams Group; Shannon Houchins by Verve Talent and Literary Agency.

About Hideout Pictures
Hideout Pictures is based out of Nashville, TN where their parent company Average Joes Entertainment, a country music lablel was established over a decade ago. Hideout Pictures produced the critically acclaimed and box office hit western “Old Henry” that premiered at the Venice Film Festival in 2021 and was then released October 1, 2021. “Old Henry” stars Tim Blake Nelson, Scott Haze, Trace Adkins, and Stephen Dorff.  Hidedout also produced “Ted K.” that premiered at the Berlin Film Festival and was released by Neon in March 14, 2022. “Ted K” stars Sharlto Copley in an exploration of Ted Kaczynksi's life in in the years leading up to his arrest as The Unabomber. Hideout is in production of the 3rd  season of docu-series Music’s Greatest Mysteries for AXS TV. In 2019 Hideout Pictures produced Kevin Smith’s last project, “The Jay & Silent Bob Reboot.” Also, that year Hideout produced the sci-fi thriller “3022” staring Kate Walsh and Omar Epps that was released by Saban Films. Hideout’s first production was the series “Still the King” for CMT that starred Billy Ray Cyrus. Hideout has the documentary in post-production currently.  

Strike Back Studios recently released the critically acclaimed feature documentary The United States of Insanity” that screened on over 600 screens nationwide on October 26, 2021, with a limited theatrical run November 12 th before a Video On Demand and DVD release before Christmas and a release of I, Challenger” across all TVOD/Digital platforms on January 11th, 2022. Strike Back Studios will next release cinematic racing documentary “Rookie Season” across all TVOD/Digital platforms on April 15th, 2022 after a limited theatrical run in March. Strike Back Studios in partnership with Hideout Picture’s has been steadily creating/releasing incredible independent film success stories. Strike Back Studios formed a unique partnership in 2020 with regards to the financing and distribution of projects. The goal is to work with producers from the earliest stages of development and production on up. They are embracing the true tenants of film collaboration and are bringing them to global audiences.  Strike Back Studios and Hideout Pictures is focused on addressing the growing concerns from producers regarding the distribution of independent features. The companies work with producers early in the production process to develop unique and innovate marketing and promotional strategies for their release. This will save producers from having to rely on taking their project to a film festival with the hope of a major sale to make them financially whole. Strike Back Studios still wants to screen projects at film festival but make the screening part of the distribution release strategy vs sales strategy. Current Strike Back Studios titles available for global audiences can be found at strikebackstudios.com.

About Particular Crowd
Particular Crowd is the original film label of WarnerMedia Latin America, a division of WarnerMedia. The label has already produced more than 100 films aimed at a universal audience, not only across the diversity of Latin America, but around the globe. The films are produced in English, Spanish or Portuguese and cover the popular genres of comedy, romantic comedy, horror, thriller, teen, and family films. It is an initiative focused on films with contained budgets, which puts the consumer first by making its content available on a multi-platform basis, including HBO Max, Linear TV (TNT, SPACE, HBO), cinemas, festivals and digital spaces. Based in Los Angeles, Mexico City, and Buenos Aires, Particular Crowd has film development, production and co-financing agreements and has already partnered with several leading production companies to generate content. In addition, it seeks to discover new talents and provide access and opportunities for the next generation of filmmakers.

 web: www.particularcrowd.com.
Ig: @ParticularCrowd

About Film Mode Entertainment
Film Mode Entertainment is a leading worldwide sales agent, production entity and distribution company, focusing on commercially driven feature films of all genres and budget sizes. Film Mode represents projects at all stages of the filmmaking process, often as Executive Producer, with the aim of helping producers and distributors achieve maximum exposure for their films. Film Mode’s recent titles include Mayim Bialik’s feature directorial debut, AS THEY MADE US, starring two-time Oscar-winner Dustin Hoffman, Academy Award-nominee and Emmy Award-winner Candice Bergen, Simon Helberg and Dianna Agron, CHICK FIGHT starring Malin Ackerman and Bella Thorne, CRYPTO starring Kurt Russell, Luke Hemsworth and Alexis Bledel, STAGE MOTHER starring Academy Award nominee Jacki Weaver, Lucy Liu and Adrian Grenier. Previous releases include SUGAR MOUNTAIN starring Jason Momoa, and THE GOOD NEIGHBOR starring Academy Award-nominee James Caan. Film Mode accelerated their growth and expanded their capabilities by entering into a partnership with SCREEN MEDIA, representing their catalogue of more than 600 titles, including WHAT’S EATING GILBERT GRAPE starring Leonardo DiCaprio, who was nominated for an Academy Award and a Golden Globe for his performance, and MONSTER, starring Charlize Theron who won an Academy Award and Golden Globe for Best Actress for the film. The company also has its own distribution arm, as well as a documentary label, DocMode. Film Mode is based in Beverly Hills, CA. For more information, visit  www.filmmodeentertainment.com

About Spirit Halloween
Spirit Halloween (SpiritHalloween.com) is the largest Halloween retailer in the country, with over 1,425 locations in strip centers and malls across North America. Celebrating more than 37 years of business, Spirit is the premier destination for all things Halloween, offering one-stop shopping for everything from costumes to décor and party goods to accessories. In addition to being a fun and interactive event for shoppers, Spirit stores offer complete selections of costumes and accessories for infants/toddlers, children, 'tweens, teens, and adults, along with exclusive décor you won't find anywhere else. For more information, please visit: SpiritHalloween.com

Strike Back Studios New Release Racing Documentary “Rookie Season”

Strike Back Studios will have a global TVOD/Digital release on April 15th, 2022 of the gripping  cinematic racing documentary “Rookie Season”

On all TVOD/Digital platforms across North America (USA & Canada), The United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand and more.

Perfectly timed to the global racing season (following the film’s recent successful world premiere as the Best Documentary at the 2021 International Motor Film Awards in London, recent North American Premiere at the Mammoth Film Festival and incredible theatrical release across North America in February

The feature film debut from director
Adrian Bonvento, “Rookie Season” gives audiences unprecedented access to the team throughout their 2019 season, be it through visceral in-car cameras, frank pit lane and engineering room discussions, or meaningful insight from the main characters.  Adventure Entertainment released Rookie Season theatrically in over 100 cinemas across North America, Australia and New Zealand just last month and Strike Back Studios will launch a global TVOD/Digital platform release to follow on April 15th, 2022 across all TVOD/Digital platforms across North America (USA & Canada), The United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand and more.

In 2019 Adrian Bonvento undertook the daunting task of creating his debut feature length film as a team of one, telling an incredible underdog story. Businessman and amateur racer Frank DePew  purchased the assets of Rebel Rock Racing in late 2018 with the goal of testing his skill in the professional racing ranks. He hired as his co-driver   Robin Liddell, a decorated veteran with 29 career wins in IMSA’stop-level series and the 2015 Michelin Pilot Challenge champion in the Grand Sport (GS) class. Joe Hall also joined the team as crew chief. The road to success was anything but easy. The team finished dead lst in a 49-car field at the 2019 season opener at Daytona International Speedway. Slowly but surely,DePew, Liddelland the Rebel Rock crew built the program back up and punctuated the rebirth with a win at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park and a storybook victory at Road America.

Director Adrian Bonvento was there for it all.Bonventov was given unprecedented access to the team, and the open, honest narration from team members provides rare and intimate insights. Action sequences were filmed entirely independent of broadcast cameras. Bonvento’s unfettered access and creative cinematography makes for a fresh and powerful portrait of a team, in an attempt to discover what truly drives these individuals at their very core.

Cinematic and enthralling,“Rookie Season”forgoes traditional interviews and straps the viewer firmly into the driver’s seat, as it follows the highs and lows of Rebel Rock Racing during their inaugural IMSA season. A deeply moving and introspective account of what it takes to compete, this is a story of struggle and strife; of victories along the way; of defeat. It is a universal underdog tale that attempts to uncover the truth and the meaning behind the pursuit of one’s dream.


About Adrian Bonvento:
A creator and competitor at his core, Adrian Bonvento aims to convey his lifelong passion for sport in each of his films. With a distinct filmmaking style, he produces enthralling scenes that captivate the viewer through both action and art. As a documentary filmmaker, Adrian consistently strives to push the limits of what can be accomplished under pressure, without the comfort of multiple takes. In his career to date, Adrian has produced videos for Ferrari, Audi, Porsche, Chevrolet, and many private clients at events around the world. His production company, Bonvento Creative LLC, specializes in action sport filmmaking, and always strives to bring a fresh and powerful perspective to each step of the filmmaking process. Additional work in Adrian’s portfolio can be found at: www.AdrianBonvento.com

PAFF ANNOUNCES FULL LINEUP FOR 2022 PAN AFRICAN FILM & ARTS FESTIVAL

REMEMBER ME, THE MAHALIA JACKSON STORY Opens 30th Edition of America’s Largest Black Film Festival, Apri 19 - May 1

Over 200 films from 55 countries to be shown at Cinemark Baldwin Hills

PAFF30_LOGO

LOS ANGELES, California – Today, PAFF announced the full lineup for the 30th annual Pan African Film & Arts Film Festival, the largest Black film festival in America, taking place April 19 - May 1, 2022. This year the Festival will make its return to the Cinemark Baldwin Hills for in-person screenings, featuring over 200 films from 55 countries, in 18 languages, including 58 World and 32 North American premieres. Of the films selected for the Festival, 46% are helmed by female, queer or non-binary filmmakers, and 80% are directed by filmmakers of African descent. Many titles will also be available virtually for in-home screenings via the Festival’s streaming platform Eventive to audiences worldwide. The Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza will once again host its renowned Artfest, featuring over 100 established and emerging fine artists and quality craftspeople from all over the Black Diaspora. Festival Passes and individual tickets are on sale now and can be purchased at www.paff.org.

BIG NIGHTS

The 30th Pan African Film & Arts Festival opens Apr. 19 at the Directors Guild of America with REMEMBER ME, a poignant look into the life and rise of gospel singer Mahalia Jackson and starring Grammy-winning singer Ledisi. The Centerpiece presentation are the winning films from the JOHN SINGLETON SHORT FILM COMPETITION. Inspired by the legacy of the late Los Angeles-born legendary African American filmmaker, John Singleton, the competition is the result of a partnership between the City of Los Angeles and PAFF under L.A. City Council President Herb Wesson’s embRACE L.A. initiative and is designed to honor Singleton’s cinematic legacy while simultaneously celebrating his unapologetic approach to filmmaking. The Festival will also host the premiere of FX Network’s hotly anticipated “Snowfall” Season 5 finale and Showtime’s “The Man Who Fell From Earth,” starring Chiwetel Ejiofo. The full schedule is available in the online Festival Program.

Click here to download PAFF's 2022 Quick Facts and Highlights

CELEBRATING 30 YEARS

7,200 miles away from Los Angeles in Ougadodo, Burkina Faso, the idea to showcase Black film and filmmakers in Los Angeles was born. It was 1989, the 20th anniversary of FESPACO also known as The Panafrican Film and Television Festival of Ouagadougou, the largest film festival in Africa. There, Ayuko Babu, Danny Glover (The Color Purple, Lethan Weapon), and others with the help of then-Chairman of the U.S. Subcommittee on Africa Rep. Mervyn Dymally and Burkina Faso President Blaise Compaoré conceived a plan to bring African cinema to the U.S. Thirty years later, the Pan African Film Festival (PAFF), is still going strong and is the largest Black film festival in America.

Ticketing

Festival Passes and individual tickets are on sale now and can be purchased at www.paff.org.

Festival Sponsors and Partners

PAFF is sponsored in part by the City of Los Angeles, the Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs, Los Angeles County Supervisor Holly J. Mitchell through the Department of Arts and Culture, LA Councilmember Marqueece Harris-Dawson, LA Councilmember Curren Price, LA Councilmember Herb Wesson, the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences, LA Arts COVID-19 Relief Fund with the California Community Foundation, and the LA County COVID-19 Arts Relief Fund administered by the LA County Department of Arts and Culture.

The 30th Pan African Film & Arts Festival's sponsors include major Festival sponsors: Stocker Street Creative, FX Networks, and Glassdoor.

About the Pan African Film & Arts Festival

Established in 1992 by Hollywood veterans Danny Glover (The Color Purple, Lethal Weapon), the late Ja'Net DuBois ("Good Times"), and Ayuko Babu (Executive Director), the Pan African Film Festival is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that has remained dedicated to the promotion of Black stories and images through the exhibition of film, visual art, and other creative expression. PAFF is one of the largest and most prestigious Black film festivals in the U.S. and attracts local, national, and international audiences. In addition, it is an Oscar-qualifying festival for animation and live-action films, and one of the largest Black History Month events in America.

For media inquiries please contact press@paff.org.

IN-PERSON
The 30th Annual Pan African Film & Arts Festival
April 19-May 1, 2022

Cinemark Baldwin Hills 15 | Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza

List of Music Films Screening at 30th Pan African Film and Arts Festival

Check out the dynamic line-up of music films screening this year at the 3oth Pan African Film and Arts Festival 2022

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Oscar Peterson: Black + White (Documentary, 83 min, Canada) Directed by Barry Avrich

This film explores the life and legacy of the great Afro-Canadian jazz icon and composer Oscar Peterson -- his sound, stardom, and staggering virtuosity. His family are among the people who fled or migrated to Canada from slavery and individual acts of racism or structural racism in the United States. This ground-breaking “docu-concert” delves into the seven-decade career of this jazz master from his days as a child prodigy in Canada to the development of his signature sound on recordings with his trio, and from collaborations with the legends of his era to his brilliant solo performances around the world — as well as his tenacious experiences confronting racism and segregation while touring the United States and the world, which culminated with his epic composition, Hymn to Freedom, inspired by Mr. Nelson Mandela and his peoples’ struggle for freedom and majority rule.

Buddy Guy: The Blues Chase the Blues Away (Documentary, 82 min, US) Directed by Charles Todd & Devin Amar

The story of Buddy Guy, who transcended his early years sharecropping in 1940s racist Louisiana to become one of music’s most influential guitarists, directly inspiring Taj Mahal, Johnny “Guitar” Watson, The Rolling Stones, Jimi Hendrix, and Eric Clapton. A tale of decades-long perseverance, Buddy’s journey reflects his peoples’ experiences in America through their music--the blues.

Love, Longing, Loss: At Home with Charles Lloyd During a Year of the Plague (Documentary, 60 min, US) Directed by Dorothy Darr

This film is about the amazing Charles Lloyd, one of the iconic jazz saxophonists of the 20th and 21st centuries, and the effects of the isolation due to the plague (COVID and its variants) which created a period of reflection, revelation and resourcefulness. Filmed over the course of several months using iPhone and Lumix cameras and a portable Zoom recorder, the film provides a rare and intimate insight into the artistry of Charles Lloyd--including his reflections on music, solitude, resistance, social injustice, his ancestry, as well as solo performances.

Tonton Manu (Documentary, 90 min, Brazil/Cameroon/Congo-Brazzaville/DRC/Côte d'Ivoire/France/Guadeloupe/UK/US) Directed by Patrick Puzenat & Thierry Dechilly (about the great Manu Dibango, who brought Soul Makossa to the world and influenced Michael Jackson’s album Thriller. Tonton means uncle in various African languages.)

This film, begun at the dawn of Manu’s eightieth birthday and completed five years later to the day, is a portrait of the great musician Manu Dibango, tireless defender of the mix of cultures that takes us to three continents. Rhythmic by a diversity of exchanges and the convictions of personalities, this sensitive and modest portrait is interspersed with moments of musical grace where the great Manu creates instances of pure emotion from his saxophone.

The Rumba Kings (Documentary, 94 min, Belgium/DRC/France/Morocco/Peru/US) Directed by Alan Brain

This wonderful film celebrates the great Pan African music that came out of the Democratic Republic of the Congoa nation that fought slavery and colonial oppression for its freedomThey forged a modern identity with the help of this music. In the 1950s, when the DRC was a Belgian colony, a generation of great Congolese musicians fused traditional African rhythms and music with Afro-Cuban rhythms and music to create the electrifying beat of a new Pan African sound called Congolese rumba. A beat that would carry Congo through its 1960s independence struggle and conquer Pan African nations and communities worldwide with its infectious groove, captivating guitar licks, and smooth vocals.

Remember Me: The Mahalia Jackson Story (Narrative Feature, 90 min, US) Directed by Denise Dowse

The Opening Night film celebrating the 30th Anniversary of the Pan African Film Festival on April 9@7:00 pm at the Directors Guild of America

An insightful look into the life and ascent of legendary, iconic, and mystic Gospel Singer Mahalia Jackson. This film focuses on her search to balance her gift, love, and her activism during the civil rights movement in the 1950s and 1960s. Mahalia broke racial, gender, business, and musical barriers and participated fully in the civil rights movement. She influenced such singers as Aretha Franklin, the Staple Singers, Nina Simone, and many others. She was an advisor to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and was his favorite singer. When Dr. King was depressed and feeling low, wherever he was in the world and no matter what time it was, he would call Mahalia and ask her to sing a song. As a civil rights activist she was conscious of her power in the movement, among the people and with Dr. King. An example of this mystical connection between her, the people and Dr. King is when Dr. King was giving the keynote speech at the 1963 March on Washington in front of 250,000 people at the Lincoln Memorial and millions of people watching on television worldwide. As he soared into his oratory, Mahalia can be heard saying “Martin, tell them about your dream.” He seamlessly soared into his dream which had an electrifying effect on the multitudes who were present and listening from around the world. The speech became the famous, iconic “I Have a Dream Speech,” considered one of the greatest speeches ever given. It is truly an honor for the Pan African Film Festival to have the opportunity to showcase this wonderful film about this iconic sister as the Opening Night film celebrating our 30th Anniversary on April 19@7:00 pm at the Directors Guild of America.

Ayinla (Narrative Feature, 119 min, Nigeria) Directed by Tunde Kelani

Set against the backdrop of a beautiful range of hills and valleys in the southwestern Nigerian countryside, AYINLA is inspired by the life and times of Ayinla Omowura, a popular Yoruba musician in rural Nigeria. Ayinla was the decisive proponent of the important music from the Yoruba people called Apala. As a result of his innovations, creativity, musicianship and spirituality, as well as his ability to speak to the conditions of the people, this music has spread around the world and has produced such superstars as Fela Aníkúlápó Kuti, Chief Sonny Ade, Hugh Masekela, Chief Ebenezer Obey, Bobby Benson, Nobel Prize winner Wole Soyinka, Femi Kuti, Seun Kuti, Tony Allen and many others. Apala music is so powerful that it can be heard somewhere on the planet Earth in various forms such as fuji music every day. The film captures the story of this musical superstar who comes to a tragic end as his stardom was ascending. Forty years after his death, his legacy and Apala music remains popular and relevant today. 

Lionsgate “Escape the Field” Opens on May 6, View New Clip

Open in select theaters, On Digital and On Demand

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Cast: Jordan Claire Robbins, Theo Rossi, Tahirah Sharif, Julian Feder, Elena Juatco, and Shane West
Directed by: Emerson MooreWritten by: Emerson Moore and Joshua Dobkin & Sean Wathen
Produced by: Andrew Davies Gans, Michael Philip, Jason Moring, Emerson Moore
Genre: Thriller
Rating: R
Running Time: 1 hour 28 minutes

Lionsgate presents, an Anacapa Pictures and CR8IV DNA production, in association with Ingenious Media / Double Dutch International / Glanzrock Productions / Stormchaser Films / Richmond Pictures / LipSync.

Opens in New York (Cinema Village), Los Angeles (Lumiere Cinema), and key cities nationwide.

Shane West as Ryan in Escape The Field. Photo Credit: Courtesy of Lionsgate
Shane West as Ryan in Escape The Field. Photo Credit: Courtesy of Lionsgate

The fear is inescapable and the suspense nonstop in this gripping horror-thriller about six strangers who suddenly awaken in a remote, endless cornfield. Stripped of their possessions, they are left with only six items: a gun with a single bullet, matches, a lantern, a knife, a compass, and a flask of water. As mysterious sirens blare in the distance and traps appear at every turn, the group realizes it’s been plunged into a cat-and-mouse game with an unseen evil, and survival depends upon solving a diabolical — and deadly — puzzle.

Lionsgate presents, an Anacapa Pictures and CR8IV DNA production, in association with Ingenious Media / Double Dutch International / Glanzrock Productions / Stormchaser Films / Richmond Pictures / LipSync

OFFICIAL SITE: https://www.lionsgate.com/movies/escape-the-field

LIONSGATE PUBLICITY SITE: https://www.lionsgatepublicity.com/specialty-release/escape-the-field

Instagram:@EscapeTheFieldMovie

Jonas Bak’s Award-winning WOOD AND WATER Opens in in LOS ANGELES April 15 at the Lumiere Music Hall

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WOOD AND WATER

A FILM BY: JONAS BAK

STARRING: Anke Bak, Ricky Yeung, Alexandra Batten, Patrick Lo, Theresa Bak, Patrick Shum, Edward Chan, Susanne Johnssen, Lena Ackermann, Amy Aceituna and Christel Johnssen.

Run time: 1 hour 19 Minutes
Countries: Germany/ France/ Hong Kong 
Feature Film
Language:
German, English and Cantonese

Soundtrack: ’New Space Music’ by Brian Eno 

WINNER!  BERLIN INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL- SPECIAL MENTION: COMPASS-PERSPEKTIVE-AWARD

With seamless grace, German director Jonas Bak moves from the tall spires of the Black Forest to the teeming skyscrapers of Hong Kong in his tranquil, deeply moving feature debut. Newly retired from her church job, Anke dreams of spending time with her grown children—including her uncommunicative and elusive son, Max, who has been living for years in Hong Kong, and who is unable to join his mother and sister back in Germany due to the ongoing pro-democracy protests.

In a daring decision, Anke, though suffering from loneliness and loss, travels to Hong Kong to find Max and perhaps also herself. The people she encounters, and her experience of the city help her to break down the inner walls she constructed years ago and make way for a new chapter in her life.

In his hushed, wholly original approach to this fish-out-of-water set-up, Bak constructs a gentle, ambiguous fable of becoming, shot on 16mm and featuring a wondrous, naturalistic performance by his own mother, Anke Bak.

Filmmaker Jonas Bak

JONAS BAK - (Writer/ Director/ Editor)

Born in Konstanz in 1985, and now based in Freiburg, Jonas Bak studied film directing at Edinburgh College of Art before moving to London in 2015, and then Hong Kong in 2018 to work as a freelance film director and director of photography.

He wrote and directed two short films, WANDERDRACHEN (2016) and ONE AND MANY (2017), both of which were screened at international film festivals including Molodist, Curtacinema Rio de Janeiro and Pacific Meridian. WOOD AND WATER (2021) is his first feature film.