BFI have always been champions of important and vital cinema. In the wake of so much ignorance in the world about Black Cinema including Hollywood and the UK, they have created a whole new festival to celebrate the brilliance and the fruitful part of filmmaking, championing diversity in all its excellence with Black Star!
Over several different platforms, Black Cinema and Black stars will be celebrated. The events will transverse over the UK with 90 different locations celebrating generations of black movie-making. Classic movies such as Boyz in the Hood, In the Heat of the Night, and more will play across the UK whilst 50 films will make their way too BFI Player. There will also be educational events.
The season will spotlight:
- The leading men of classic Hollywood cinema; from Harry Belafonte and Sidney Poitier to Jamie Foxx and the hugely popular Samuel L Jackson
- The star as political activist; the great Paul Robeson and Lena Horne through to Danny Glover and Beyoncé
- Stars who have gone on to be major power players, who can open films, get films made, from Oprah Winfrey and Will Smith to Denzel Washington
- Powerful and glamorous female stars who have created memorable big screen icons, from Dorothy Dandridge to Oscar®-winning Halle Berry
- British home grown talent with star power who have gained international acclaim and found significant leading roles in the US: Idris Elba, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Sophie Okonedo and David Oyelowo
- The star names who have dominated music and film stories, from Sammy Davis Jnr through to Diana Ross and Motown, to Ice Cube and Hip Hop
- The stars who have created a powerfully subversive take on the black star as entertainer; comedians including Richard Pryor, Whoopi Goldberg and Eddie Murphy
- Black rebels and Blaxploitation icons; Mario van Peebles, Fred Williamson and Pam Grier
- A story of new and emerging talent, John Boyega, Michael B. Jordan, Gugu Mbatha-Raw and Lupita Nyongo’o
- Pioneering Afro-Caribbean stars who transformed the face of British film and television, like Earl Cameron, Carmen Munroe, Norman Beaton and Lenny Henry
- And celebrating the stars emerging out of the fast-growing film industry and new star system of Nollywood, including Nse Ikpe-Etim
Heather Stewart, Creative Director of the BFI says: “Imagine cinema history without Paul Robeson, Dorothy Dandridge, Sidney Poitier, Pam Grier, and Samuel L Jackson – some of the greatest actors to light up our screens with their charisma and talent. Now imagine how much richer our shared memory would be, had the opportunities available to black actors matched their abilities. With BLACK STAR we are celebrating great performances and bringing them back to the big screen for everyone to enjoy. And we are also asking searching questions, of our industry and of ourselves, driven by a passion to meet the expectations of audiences who rightly expect to see their stories and aspirations reflected on screen.”
What do you think of the initiative? We’re absolutely thrilled!
BFI BLACK STAR STARTS ON 17 OCTOBER – 31 DECEMBER 2016
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