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International Black Women's Film Festival Unveils 2013 Official Selections

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by Tambay A. Obenson
August 12, 2013 11:35 AM
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Daughter of Fortune, director Dawn Kamoche
Daughter of Fortune, director Dawn Kamoche

I'll return for individual highlights of those films that we haven't previously profiled, but in the mean time, check out the full list below (via press release), which includes titles that should be familiar, like Audre Lorde-The Berlin Years, and Meanwhile in Mamelodi.

The festival takes place from October 25 to October 27, in San Francisco, CA.

Venues include Jack Adams Auditiorium at San Francisco State University, and BRAVA Theater Center in San Francisco. Additional dates and venues to be announced. 

Visit festival.ibwff.com.

2013 OFFICIAL SELECTION | INTERNATIONAL BLACK WOMEN’S FILM FESTIVAL

(An asterisk “*” denotes a premiere)

16 Seeds, director Melinda James (USA, 2012)

"16 Seeds" examines the roles that people of color play in the struggle for food justice, from a community organizer's journey of increasing the visibility of black farmers to the groundwork of an elder seeking to preserve family traditions.

Focused on three individuals - Gail, Mia, and Mickey, living in Oakland and San Francisco's Bayview district, this film positions them at the forefront of the movement in their communities to reclaim food and our connections to it.Director(s): Melinda James, Screenwriter(s): Producer(s): About Her Films

20 minutes | @aboutherfilms

Audre Lorde-The Berlin Years, director Dagmar Schultz (Germany, 2012)

2012 marked the 20th anniversary of Audre Lorde’s passing, the acclaimed Black lesbian feminist poet and activist. Audre Lorde - The Berlin Years 1984 to 1992 explores a little-known chapter of the writer’s prolific life, a period in which she helped ignite the Afro-German Movement and made lasting contributions to the German political and cultural scene before and after the fall of the Berlin Wall. Lorde mentored and encouraged Black German women to write and publish as a way of asserting their identities, rights and culture in a society that isolated and silenced them, while she challenged white German women to acknowledge and constructively use their white privilege. This documentary contains previously unreleased audiovisual material from director Dagmar Schultz’s personal archive, including stunning images of Audre Lorde off stage. With testimony from Lorde’s colleagues, students and friends, this film documents Lorde’s lasting legacy in Germany.Director(s): Dagmar Schultz, Screenwriter(s): Dagmar Schultz Co-Authors: Ika Hügel-Marshall, Ria Cheatom, Aletta von Vietinghoff, Producer(s): Dagmar Schultz

1 hour and 15 minutes |

Clara, director Karl Stelter (USA, 2012)

Language: English

"Clara" is a dark and gritty psychological drama about a woman on the breaking point of reality. She has lost everything and fights to hold on to her psyche and everything else around her.Director(s): Karl Stelter, Screenwriter(s): Sachandra Grandoit, Producer(s): Sachandra Grandoit, Maria Ochoa and Karl Stetlar

20 minutes |

Daughter of Fortune, director Dawn Kamoche (USA, 2012)

In the late summer of 1955, Hollywood star Cynthia Beckley has everything a woman could want. But when an old friend dies, Cynthia's long buried secrets threaten to reappear and destroy her perfect world forever.Director(s): Dawn Kamoche, Screenwriter(s): Dawn Kamoche, Producer(s): Sabrina Chammas & Jordan Reddout

30 minutes | @DaughterFortune

*Echo at 11 Oak Drive, director Crystle Clear Roberson (USA, 2013)

A drug induced writer moves into an old home and unveils the peculiar characters who once lived there.Director(s): Crystle Clear Roberson, Screenwriter(s): Crystle Clear Roberson, Producer(s): Dianne Ashford

1 hour and 15 minutes | @echofilmmakers

Even Me, director Megan Ebor (USA, 2012)

Even Me confronts the overwhelming crisis of HIV/AIDS among older adults 50+. Defying the myth that HIV/AIDS is a gay or young person’s disease, this revealing documentary depicts the devastating impact of this epidemic on the heterosexual, older adult population and communities of color. These brave men and women speak candidly about their experiences, sexual history and HIV status and help to uncover the misconceptions about aging, sexuality and HIV/AIDS.Director(s): Megan Ebor, Screenwriter(s): Megan Ebor, Producer(s): Megan Ebor

30 minutes | @evenme_film

Goodnight My Love, director Kellee Terrell (USA, 2013)


A Black lesbian couple caught in a zombie apocalypse spend their final moments hashing out the issues that plagued their relationship.Director(s): Kellee Terrell, Screenwriter(s): Kellee Terrell, Producer(s): Elizabeth Brouiliette
Language: English

10 minutes | @kelleent

Impresa!, director Sephora Woldu (USA, 2013)

Impresa! is a film about a young woman in San Francisco contemplating starting a business: her own art gallery. She is a first generation Eritrean American, and the perils of her nontraditional business venture worry the family. Our protagonist goes on a day trip in the Bay Area visiting the most creative Eritrean and Ethiopian owned businesses to prove that innovation has a place in the community. The short film is a light, uplifting look into the fictitious story of one girl abandoning cultural fiscal fears and chasing entrepreneurship.Director(s): Sephora Woldu, Screenwriter(s): Sephora Woldu, Producer(s): Richard Durante, Sephora Woldu

30 minutes | @impresafilm

Mama C: Urban Warrior in the African Bush, director Joanne Hershfield (Tanzania and USA, 2012)

“Mama C: Urban Warrior in the African Bush” tells the story of Charlotte O’Neal—or Mama C as she is known—poet, musician, visual artist, spoken word artist and ex-member of the Kansas City Black Panther Party. Mama C, whose life was formed growing up in the artistically and politically vibrant atmosphere of the African American community in Kansas City, KS, has lived for past forty years in the Tanzanian village of Imbaseni.Director(s): Joanne Hershfield, Screenwriter(s): Joanne Hershfield, Producer(s): Joanne Hershfield

1 hour |

Meanwhile in Mamelodi, director Benjamin Kahlmeyer (South Africa, 2012)

Set against the raucous backdrop of the 2010 World Cup, MEANWHILE IN MAMELODI is a beautifully crafted portrait of a place and one family’s daily life inside it. The Mtsweni family lives in the Pretoria Township of the title, in the district known as Extension 11. Their world is a ramshackle collection of corrugated tin dwellings and makeshift shops, open sewers littered with debris and red-earth rectangles filled with soccer-playing children and teens. Seventeen-year-old Mosquito is one of those kids. As she studies for math tests, flirts with boys and shops with her best friend, her father Steven prepares his “tuck shop” for the promise of cash-flush tourists. Meanwhile, his wife struggles with mental illness. The Mtswenis’ lives unfold as the Cup brings new hope to the ravaged town. Extension 11 buzzes with the drone of vuvuzelas, signaling a new South Africa has arrived. Despite the poverty around her, Mosquito insists this is not her parents’ country. She is the face of South Africa’s future—part of “a new generation free to do all things.” Director(s): Benjamin Kahlmeyer, Screenwriter(s): Concept: Benjamin Kahlmeyer, Producer(s): Boris Frank

1 hour and 15 minutes |

*Phila, director Luscious Dosi (South Africa, 2013)

Language: Zulu and English

Phila travels with sister,Ntsako, in a horse cart while collecting scrap metal for a living.Being his sister's keeper,Phila is prone to believe that Ntsako is solely dependant on him. A random act of carelessness leads Phila to leave Ntsako and the horse cart unattended for a brief moment,which brings rather suprising consequences.Director(s): Luscious Dosi, Screenwriter(s): Luscious Dosi, Producer(s): Luscious Dosi

10 minutes |

Sweet, Sweet Country, director Dehanza Rogers (USA, 2013)

Living in a small Southern town, 20 year-old refugee Ndizeye struggles to support not only herself, but the family she left behind in a Kenyan refugee camp. Her struggle becomes so much more when her family literally shows up at her doorstep.Director(s): Dehanza Rogers, Screenwriter(s): Dehanza Rogers, Producer(s): Dehanza Rogers, Doug Turner, Gbenga Akinnagbe

20 minutes | @sscfilm

*Tech-Free for a Weekend, director Stella Gutierrez (USA, 2013)

Language: English

Two young women (Davonni, 11 and Stella, 13) who were in BAYCAT's summer media camp decided to challenge someone to go technology free for a weekend. Community artist and writer, Carrie Leilam Love stepped up to the challenge. Do you think she'll make it? BAYCAT is a media camp in San Francisco's Bayview District.Director(s): Stella Gutierrez, Screenwriter(s): none, Producer(s): Zara Ahmed

10 minutes | @baycatsf

About the International Black Women’s Film Festival:

The International Black Women’s Film Festival screens media by and/or about Black women from around the world in non-stereotypical, non-pornographic roles. IBWFF combats negative stereotyping of Black women in film, television and media.

The International Black Women’s Film Festival explores the social, aesthetic and political contexts of Black women in society through film, television and media, and how Black women are viewed through the moving image while at the same time being rendered voiceless and invisible.

The films presented are a bridge to overcoming our notions of stereotyped images of Black women in order to understand the importance, contributions and complexities that go unspoken in presenting the place of Black women in society.

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