Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
The Complete ‘Extant’ Series w/Halle Berry Coming Out On Blu-Ray DVD in Dec. The Complete ‘Extant’ Series w/Halle Berry Coming Out On Blu-Ray DVD in Dec. 'Terror at the Mall,' Documentary on Siege of Westgate Mall in Nairobi, Kenya, Premieres on HBO Tonight (Trailer) 'Terror at the Mall,' Documentary on Siege of Westgate Mall in Nairobi, Kenya, Premieres on HBO Tonight (Trailer) Weekend B.O. Sept. 12-14 (Will 'No Good Deed's' Success Help Make Taraji P. Henson an A-lister?) Weekend B.O. Sept. 12-14 (Will 'No Good Deed's' Success Help Make Taraji P. Henson an A-lister?) Producer Charles Belk and Actress Daniele Watts Apparently "Fit the Description" (Just Another Day in the Neighborhood) Producer Charles Belk and Actress Daniele Watts Apparently "Fit the Description" (Just Another Day in the Neighborhood) TIFF 2014 Review: 'Top Five' is Chris Rock's Funniest Movie in Years - If Not Ever TIFF 2014 Review: 'Top Five' is Chris Rock's Funniest Movie in Years - If Not Ever What’s the Big Secret That Got Those ‘No Good Deed’ Screenings Canceled? What’s the Big Secret That Got Those ‘No Good Deed’ Screenings Canceled? Taraji P. Henson Executive Produces Indie ‘Seasons of Love’ (Appears Alongside Gladys Knight, LeToya Luckett) Taraji P. Henson Executive Produces Indie ‘Seasons of Love’ (Appears Alongside Gladys Knight, LeToya Luckett) TV: New Corrections Officer for 'Orange, Another ABC Drama for Shonda Rhimes, SNL's 1st Black 'Weekend Update' Anchor TV: New Corrections Officer for 'Orange, Another ABC Drama for Shonda Rhimes, SNL's 1st Black 'Weekend Update' Anchor 'Drumline: A New Beat' (Sequel to the 2002 Film) Gets a Premiere Date + New Trailer (Watch It) 'Drumline: A New Beat' (Sequel to the 2002 Film) Gets a Premiere Date + New Trailer (Watch It) Watch First Episode of ABC's New Series 'Black-ish' Now Watch First Episode of ABC's New Series 'Black-ish' Now Black Kids from Ferguson Speak Out in 'Hey White People' Comedic Video Educating Whites on Racism Black Kids from Ferguson Speak Out in 'Hey White People' Comedic Video Educating Whites on Racism 'Terror at the Mall,' Documentary on Siege of Westgate Mall in Nairobi, Kenya, Coming to HBO (Trailer) 'Terror at the Mall,' Documentary on Siege of Westgate Mall in Nairobi, Kenya, Coming to HBO (Trailer) Woody Allen Says He Won’t Hire a Black Actor Unless the Role Calls for One... Whatever That Means Woody Allen Says He Won’t Hire a Black Actor Unless the Role Calls for One... Whatever That Means Watch First Trailer for Tyler Perry's New OWN TV Drama 'If Loving You Is Wrong' Watch First Trailer for Tyler Perry's New OWN TV Drama 'If Loving You Is Wrong' OWN Announces Cast for New Drama Series 'If Loving You is Wrong' From Tyler Perry OWN Announces Cast for New Drama Series 'If Loving You is Wrong' From Tyler Perry Co-Screenwriter of 'Noah' Explains Why There Are No Black People Or POC In The Film Co-Screenwriter of 'Noah' Explains Why There Are No Black People Or POC In The Film Aaron McGruder Finally Explains Why He Left 'The Boondocks' Aaron McGruder Finally Explains Why He Left 'The Boondocks' Lifetime Launches New Series Set In Elite World Of Hip-Hop Majorette Competitions (Watch Preview) Lifetime Launches New Series Set In Elite World Of Hip-Hop Majorette Competitions (Watch Preview) Netflix Explains Why It Doesn't Always Have That Film Or TV Show You Really Want To See (Video) Netflix Explains Why It Doesn't Always Have That Film Or TV Show You Really Want To See (Video) Tichina Arnold Says She Talked To Martin Lawrence About Doing A 'Martin' Movie... Tichina Arnold Says She Talked To Martin Lawrence About Doing A 'Martin' Movie...

Watch 'Oscar Micheaux: The Czar of Black Hollywood' - Rare Feature Doc on the Cinema Pioneer

Photo of Tambay A. Obenson By Tambay A. Obenson | Shadow and Act July 22, 2014 at 11:28AM

The filmmaker said he was inspired to make the film because, in part, he was shocked that, in spite of Micheaux's historical significance, there was "virtually nothing out there about [his] life"
9
Czar of Black Hollywood Poster

It confounds me that an official feature film on the life and work of Oscar Micheaux (whether a comprehensive documentary made for the big screen, or a scripted biopic with proper financial backing) has never been made - especially in a time when there seems to be so much interest in films based on the lives of real life public figures. Granted he's been gone for over 50 years now, but that's even more of a reason to bring his life story to the screen, if only so that there's a necessary broader awareness of him - a pioneer who seems, for all intents and purposes, except in certain cinephile circles, lost in the annals of cinema history.

I'm curious to know if, those of you currently in film school, or who recently graduated, have been, or were previously exposed to Micheaux and his work in any of your various classes. When I was in film school, I learned nothing of the man, so I'm really interested in knowing if he's in any current curriculums.

There was Pearl Bowser's 1994 documentary "Midnight Ramble: Oscar Micheaux & the Story of Race Movies," but that wasn't specifically about Micheaux; rather a telling of the history of black cinema, specifically during the first few decades of the industry's existence, when so-called "Race movies" were made.

Looking ahead, currently in development are: writer/director JD Walker's Oscar Micheaux feature film (a scripted project we first alerted to a year ago, and have been updating you on since then), titled "Oscar Micheaux: Negro Pioneer," and a feature documentary called "Oscar's Comeback," directed by Lisa Collins, which takes a look at a festival celebrating a Micheaux - a festival in an all-white town (Gregory, South Dakota

While we wait for those 2 films to be completed, check out the 60-minute web-released 2014 documentary on Micheaux below, titled "Oscar Micheaux: The Czar of Black Hollywood," which chronicles the early life and career of Micheaux (1884-1951), using archival film, images and music to create a portrait of Micheaux's early life.

The film comes from director Bayer Mack, and Block Starz Television (I assume a riff on Black Starz?). 

Mack said he was inspired to make the film because, in part, he was shocked that, in spite of Micheaux's historical significance, there was "virtually nothing out there about [his] life."

The film is executive produced by Frances Presley Rice and Hal Croasmun, and narrated by William Bell.

To follow its progress, visit http://www.facebook.com/oscarmicheauxdocumentary and/or https://twitter.com/oscarmicheaux.

By the way, JD Walker's project (titled "Oscar Micheaux: Negro Pioneer") can be tracked at its website (http://www.oscarmicheauxmovie.com) and Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/OscarMicheauxMovie).

And you can follow Lisa Collins' "Oscar's Comeback" here: http://www.oscarscomeback.com/.

Watch Bayer Mack's "Oscar Micheaux: The Czar of Black Hollywood" below, split into 4 parts:



This article is related to: Bayer Mack


Shadow & ActNewsletter