Docs

BlackStar Film Festival unveils 2022 lineup

The Philadelphia-set BlackStar Film Festival unveiled the lineup for its 11th edition on Wednesday (June 8). The festival, which is a celebration of Black, Brown and Indigenous film, runs this year ...
June 9, 2022

The Philadelphia-set BlackStar Film Festival unveiled the lineup for its 11th edition on Wednesday (June 8).

The festival, which is a celebration of Black, Brown and Indigenous film, runs this year from August 3 to 7. The festival will include virtual programming for the festival’s global audience, as well as in-person screenings and events. In total, the 2022 BlackStar Film Festival will include 76 films from 27 countries. The festival boasts 16 world premieres this year, eight North American premieres and eight 8 U.S. premieres.

Topping the festival’s documentary lineup is the feature Aftershock directed by Paula Eiselt and Tonya Lewis Lee, which follows two families galvanizing activists birth-workers and physicians about the U.S. maternal health crisis, after having lost loved ones to childbirth complications. The film premiered at Sundance earlier this year, winning the festival’s Impact for Change award in the documentary competition.

The short doc The Panola Project, directed by Rachael DeCruz and Jeremy S. Levine will also be featured at BlackStar. The doc covers the efforts of Dorothy Oliver to keep her hometown of Panola, Alabama, an often overlooked rural Black community, safe from COVID-19.

Other feature docs included at Blackstar are Let the Little Light Shine, directed by Kevin Shaw, about the fight to save a thriving, top-ranked African American elementary school in Chicago that’s threatened to close and be replaced by a high school for wealthier residents; Storming Caesar’s Palace, directed by Hazel Gurland-Pooler, about Las Vegas activist Ruby Duncan and a forgotten, feminist anti-poverty movement in the U.S.; Rewind & Play, directed by Alain Gomis, about Thelonius Monk recording a French TV show in 1969; and We Still Here / Nos Tenemos, directed by Eli Jacobs-Fantauzzi, about the aftermath of Hurricane Maria for young residents in Comerio, Puerto Rico.

“Following the success of last year’s 10th anniversary celebration, we are thrilled to present this year’s festival and hope it allows filmmakers of the global majority to forge new connections with their audiences,” BlackStar founder, artistic director, and CEO Maori Karmael Holmes said.

“We curate every aspect of our events to be intentional community building efforts, centered on joy, radical care, and thriving, and we are excited to witness how this year’s festival embodies that spirit.”

The festival’s full lineup can be found on its website.

About The Author
Barry Walsh is editor and content director for realscreen, and has served as editor of the publication since 2009. With a career in entertainment media that spans two decades, prior to realscreen, he held the associate editor post for now defunct sister publication Boards, which focused on the advertising and commercial production industries. Before Boards, he served as editor of Canadian Music Network, a weekly music industry trade, and as music editor for HMV.com. As content director, he also oversees the development of content for the brand's market-leading events, the Realscreen Summit and Realscreen West, as well as new content initiatives.

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