By Cynthia Reid | Shadow and Act September 28, 2011 at 5:03AM
There's a grassroots effort brewing to help bring awareness back to the black film industry and your help is needed to kickstart this thing. Film Life, Inc and Black Enterprise magazine have joined forces to present BLACK MOVIE MONTH (BMM).
The BMM campaign, which takes place during the month of October, has a mission of celebrating films made by, about and starring persons of African descent, and stimulating sales of Black movies across various platforms, demonstrating the economic viability and influence of Black audiences.
A website, blackmoviemonth.com, is under construction and everyone is encouraged to visit and sign a a petition to Hollywood studios advocating increased diversity of images and Black-themed stories onscreen. The site will also include film recommendations, trivia contest and upcoming theatrical release dates.
Other "calls to action" the site will advocate include buying dvds, staying informed, engaging in dialogue and supporting black filmmakers.
In a press release, Jeff Friday, CEO of Film Life, Inc. and Founder of the American Black Film Festival, states..."In recent years, there has been a dramatic reduction of Black films produced within the Hollywood system. While a number of Black artists are now household names, overall Black culture has been marginalized and missing in motion pictures. The goal of the petition is to collect 200,000 names in 31 days so that studios and independent film financiers can take notice of a united voice. We hope this effort will lead to an increase in production of films targeted to African American audiences."
A Movie Goer Consumption Study recently commissioned by BET Networks showed African Americans account for 195 million trips to movie theaters annually. On average, African Americans make more frequent visits to the movies (13.4 times per year vs. 11 times per year for general market moviegoers).
Derek Dingle, editor-in-chief of Black Enterprise magazine says..."Black movie month is long overdue. It represents the promotion of Black cinema, the celebration of Black entrepreneurship and a call to action for all filmgoers to support diverse cinematic experiences at the box office. It further demonstrates that Black filmmakers, producers, financiers and consumers have the creative prowess and financial wherewithal to bring quality films to the big screen and an array of distribution channels so our voices can be heard and experiences shared. Black Enterprise fully supports Jeff Friday and Film Life, Inc. in initiating this groundbreaking event that serves as homage to past filmmakers and a vehicle for exposure for today's filmmakers and generations to come."
So here's your chance to take ACTION!