Rarely do American audiences get to experience the cinematic diversity from the African continent; however, this October thanks to Film Independent and the Loyola Marymount University School of Film and Television, audiences in Los Angeles will be able to be part of a month-long series showcasing the best of modern cinema from West Africa. Curated by Film Independent and LACMA curator Ellvis Mitchell, Cameras d'Afrique: The Films of West Africa runs from October 3-28, 2013 at LACMA. The event will feature an array of 21 film, both narrative and documentary, many of which have never been screened in the U.S, most screenings will also include Q&As with the talented African filmmakers.
The event begins Thursday October 3rd with a double feature celebrating the films of
Mahamat-Saleh Haroun. Bye Bye Africa, and his latest effort Grigris will be screened followed by Q&A with the director. Grigris was screened at this year's Cannes Film Festival to critical acclaim, and it will see its U.S Premiere here.
Mama Kéïta’s L’Absence and
Gaston Kaboré’s Buud Yam, each film will be followed by Q&A's with the filmmakers, and then a panel discussion moderated by the Mitchell dealing with the current state of West African cinema, the challenges, and the stories from this often unseen region of the world. Other program highlights include the L.A. premiere of Mille Soleils (A Thousand Suns), Djibril Diop Mambéty’s 1973 French New Wave–inspired Touki Bouki, Idrissa Ouédraogo’s 1990 Cannes Film Festival Grand Prix winner Tilaï (The Law), and the 2013 FESPACO Golden Stallion winner Tey (Today), followed by a Q&A with director Alain Gomis and star Saul Williams.
“This series brings me such joy,” said film curator Elvis Mitchell. “Primarily because there's nothing more exhilarating to me than to expose people to exciting new filmmakers and films, let alone bring attention to the art of an area that deserves more attention than it's received in America. The works we're playing demonstrate that film at its best, like any other art form, is idiosyncratic and universal.”
Screenings will be held throughout October at LACMA’s Bing Theater on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Free community screenings and select Q&As moderated by Mitchell will take place on the Loyola Marymount University campus every Monday night.
“We are thrilled to be able to present Caméras d’Afrique: The Films of West Africa. Patrons will have the rare opportunity to see the latest films that have received accolades from the top European and African film festivals as well as classics from the past 50 years," said LMU SFTV Dean Stephen Ujlaki, adding, “Connecting our students to the rich filmography of West Africa, long a Francophone region, will expose them to different forms of storytelling, inspiring their own unique visions.”
Film Independent, LACMA Film Club, and The New York Times Film Club members can purchase tickets to films for $5 HERELACMA Members, students with valid ID, and seniors can get tickets for $7, and $10 for general public HERE
About LMU SFTV
Movie industry moguls helped establish Loyola Marymount University’s (LMU) current campus on the bluffs above west Los Angeles in the 1920s. By 1964, LMU was formally teaching film and television curriculum, and in 2001, the School of Film and Television (SFTV) was established as its own entity. Today, SFTV offers students a comprehensive education where mastering technical skills and story is equally important to educating the whole person, including the formation of character and values, meaning and purpose. SFTV offers undergraduate degrees in animation, production, screenwriting, film and television studies and recording arts; and graduate degrees in production, screenwriting and writing and producing for television. The school is one of the few film programs providing students with a completely tapeless model of production and post-production, and SFTV’s animation program is one of the few worldwide that teaches virtual cinematography. Selected alumni include John Bailey, Bob Beemer, Francie Calfo, Brian Helgeland, Francis Lawrence, Lauren Montgomery, Jack Orman, Van Partible and James Wong, among others. Get more information at sftv.lmu.edu or facebook.com/lmusftv.
About Film Independent at LACMA
Film Independent at LACMA is a film series produced by Film Independent—the nonprofit arts organization that also produces the Film Independent Spirit Awards and the Los Angeles Film Festival—and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) with presenting sponsor The New York Times and premier sponsor Ovation. The Film Independent at LACMA Film Series is curated by Elvis Mitchell and assistant curator Bernardo Rondeau. The program features classic and contemporary narrative and documentary films; emerging auteurs; international showcases; special guest-curated programs, such as Jason Reitman's acclaimed Live Read series; and conversations with artists, filmmakers, and other special guests. For more information, go to filmindependent.org/lacma or lacma.org.