FESTIVAL OPENS OCTOBER 25TH IN LOS ANGELES
New York, NY, September 25, 2007 – Film Life’s 11th annual American Black Film Festival (ABFF) will kick-off Thursday October 25th in Los Angeles with the special screening of the upcoming Sony/Screen Gems film This Christmas, starring Delroy Lindo, Idris Elba, Loretta Divine, Mekhi Phifer and Regina King. Festival passes and tickets for the ABFF are on sale now at ticket web (www.ticketweb.com) or by visiting www.abff.com. “We are excited to be kicking off this year’s festival with this highly anticipated film, produced by ABFF alumni Will packer and Preston A. Whitmore II,” said Jeff Friday, founder/CEO of Film Life, Inc. and the ABFF.
In addition to the opening night screening of This Christmas, Bill Duke’s acclaimed Actors Boot Camp will be held for three days as will the popular Filmmakers Workshop, which will feature instruction from F. Gary Gray and John Singleton. Producer Tracey Edmonds and Writer/Directors Kasi Lemmons and Reggie Rock Bythewood as well as writer, Norman Vance, Jr., will be on hand at Lincoln’s “Off the Red Carpet” program. In addition, celebrities such as Boris Kodjoe, Julie Dash, and Gabrielle Union will participate in panel discussions and screenings. Actor Anthony Anderson is the 2007 ABFF Ambassador and Director Antoine Fuqua will serve as the President of the 2007 ABFF Grand Jury.
Founded in 1997, the mission of the festival is to strengthen the Black filmmaking community through resource sharing, education, artistic collaboration and career development. Since its inception, over 500 independent films have been screened, seventy percent of which have gone on to secure theatrical or DVD distribution.
Festival alumni include director Sylvain White (Stomp the Yard), producers Rob Hardy and Will Packer (Stomp the Yard), producer Roger M. Bobb (Daddy’s Little Girls) and writer/director Frank E. Flowers (Haven). The ABFF was born out of the need to generate distribution opportunities for independent Black films and promote cultural diversity within the motion picture industry. It is widely considered the premier Black film market. Festival attendance is expected to exceed 5,000 people.
“The support of our corporate partners, led by founding and title sponsor HBO, Lincoln, Allstate®, and BET J, allows the festival to continue to grow and nurture artists in a variety of disciplines offering workshops, symposiums, exclusive parties, high-level networking and signature events including: ABFF Feature Panel Discussion, A Conversation With…, and the HBO Short Film Competition,” added Friday.
Other 2007 Festival sponsors include: Blockbuster, Nokia, Paper Denim & Cloth, Heineken, Kodak, Fox Entertainment Group, Nielsen Media Research, Inta Juice, Nickelodeon, The Word Network, Golden Street Entertainment, Codeblack Entertainment, First Look Studios, Sofitel LA, One Village Entertainment, MTV Networks, Target, IFP, SAG Indie, Black Enterprise, heart & soul, Uptown, Upscale, DV Republic, Black Noir, NV magazine, and VIBE. V100-FM is the official radio partner.
The ABFF’s four film sections – Shorts, U.S. Features, International Features and Documentaries – will provide increased visibility to the films that will be screened this year. Filmmakers will be recognized and rewarded with cash and other prizes at the ABFF’s Independent Film Awards Presentation on October 28th at the WGA. Festival ticket prices are as follows: Festival Passes $675, Actors Boot Camp Passes $350, Filmmaker Workshop Passes $350, Symposium Passes $30, and Movie Screening Tickets $12. To purchase passes or tickets visit www.abff.com or www.ticketweb.com
The ABFF, co-founded by Jeff Friday in 1997, is a property of Film Life, Inc., a New York-based film marketing and distribution company. Its mission is to spearhead the global distribution of quality Black films and be the leading American brand producing Black movies, television, events and digital content. Film Life’s key properties include the American Black Film Festival (abff.com); The Black Movie Awards on TNT (blackmovieawards.com); and the ABFF DVD Series (thefilmlife.com), a partnership with Warner Home Video.
Home Box Office, Inc., is the premium television programming subsidiary of Time Warner Inc., providing two 24-hour premium television services — HBO and Cinemax-to over 40 million U.S. subscribers. The services offer the most popular subscription video on demand products, HBO On Demand and Cinemax On Demand, as well as multiplex channels and HD feeds. Internationally, HBO’s branded television networks, along with the subscription video on demand products HBO on Demand and HBO Mobile, bring HBO services to over 50 countries.
Festival and registration information is available online www.abff.com, via phone 212.966.2411, ext. 400, or by e-mail: email@example.com.
Ghana Odet Wilson, ABFF Publicity
212-966-2411 ext 411