The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences held a special screening at New York’s City’s Metrograph. The screening was for director Kasi Lemmons’ 1992 classic Eve’s Bayou! Eve’s Bayou is the film that was chosen for this month to both continue to spotlight female filmmakers in the industry and in honor of Black History Month.
During Lemmons director debut,she wrote a story about a daughter who witnesses her father having an affair, and starts a chain reaction that could tear her family apart. Cast members were Samuel L. Jackson, Jurnee Smollett Bell, Debbi Morgan, Lynn Whitfield, Diahann Carroll, Lisa Nicole Carson, Meagan Good, Roger Guenveur Smith, and Vondie Curtis Hall whom all are still working today.
Lemmons said in an interview, ” In some ways, it was a gift. I was always interested in writings. I had gone to film school. I definitely had a pull in writing and directing. I had been writing and acting since I was a kid. So I went to film school and I started writing and writing with other people. Eve’s Bayou was the first thing I wrote by myself and it was simple in that I took the time, I wrote the script, I wrote a few drafts until I thought it was good.”
Editor Shropshire said this in the interview,”When I was given the script of Eve’s Bayou, I had never read anything like that in my life. When I read a script, I watch a script and I saw my family. I saw uncles and aunts and I saw these professional beautiful black people and I just knew that this was something that I wanted to be a part of and whether or not I got the job, I was so grateful that someone was finally making this film.
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For the 50th Annual NAACP Image Awards, Black Panther took home 14 nominations that were announced this on Wednesday. The list include Outstanding Motion Picture, Outstanding Actor in a Motion Picture, Outstanding Actor in a Motion Picture for Chadwick Boseman, Outstanding Breakthrough Role for both Winston Duke and Letitia Wright, and Outstanding Ensemble Cast in a Motion Picture, among many others.
Also Black Panther’s soundtrack single “All the Stars,” by Kendrick Lamar and SZA, is in contention for Outstanding Music Video/Visual Album. Boseman and the film’s director, Ryan Coogler, are nominated for Entertainer of the Year, alongside Beyonce, Regina King and Lebron James. Other film frontrunners at this year’s milestone event, earning multiple nominations in different categories, are BlacKkKlansman, Crazy Rich Asians, If Beale Street Could Talk, Widows and The Hate U Give. Among TV shows, Black-ish, Insecure, Seven Seconds, Atlanta and How to Get Away With Murder are among among the most celebrated series at this year’s event. All awards were presented annually by the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.
Chinonye Chukwu filmmaker of “Clemency” has broken down a new barrier. Chukwu is the first black woman to win the festival’s biggest prize, the Brand Jury Prize for her U.S. Dramatic entry. Chukwu both wrote and directed the death row drama. The film is about prison warden (Alfre Woodard) struggling with the stressful demands of her job. “Alfre Woodard embodies the extraordinary challenges of a woman tasked with sending men to their death, while bottling up her emotions so tight she looks as if she might blow,” written by Eric Kohn from IndieWire’s review.
Chukwu joins Desiree Akhavan, Ryan Coogler, Debra Granik, Damien Chazelle, and many more big names as winning the Grand Jury Prize for their U.S. Dramatic entries. At this year’s festival, women directed 46 percent of the competition films, representing 56 films across four categories.
The groundbreaking Marvel film, “Black Panther” has returned to hundreds of movie theaters across the country. Black Panther film has returned in honor of Black History Month. The movie will be shown for free, in theaters only for the first 7 days of February. Walt Disney Co. announced the giveaway on its website earlier this week.
“Black Panther is groundbreaking for many reasons, including the rich diversity of voices behind it’s success, Disney chairmen and CEO Robert A. Iger said in a statement. The film has garnered 7 Oscar nominations-including one for Best Picture of the Year, while the superhero film has a predominantly black cast. Disney also will grant 1.5 million to the United Negro College Fund.
Legendary black movie director Spike Lee, is finally an Academy nominee for best picture and director. Lee has been making films for over 3 decades. His only nominations to date were (1989) “Do the right thing” and (1997) “4 little Girls” until now. The Academy has denied two of Lee’s best films in the past like “Malcolm X” and “25th Hour” with an Honorary Oscar in 2015. Lee has always made films that represent black culture and history. Lee has also created multiple documentaries “Street Fight”, Michael Jordan to the Max” , “When we were Kings” and “Bad 25” for example. Lee is dedicated to his craft and passion for filmmaking. Generations will be forever be inspired to keep trying until you achieve your goals.
Lee is the 6th black filmmaker to be Oscar-nominated for directing. Lee also is the 11th black writer to be nominated for best picture, and the first black writer to be nominated a second time for screenplay. There has never been a black filmmaker has ever won best director. Lee also has other nominations besides best picture of the year are, supporting actor, film editing, and original score for BlacKkKlansman.