The Roxbury International Film Festival Commemorates Twenty Years of Independent Cinema Celebrating People of Color

June 20 – 30, 2018

Mandla (Oros Mampofu) works as a miner by
day, but is passionate about playing guitar and
dreams of making it big in the music industry.
Directed by Rea Rangaka. Photo by Patrick Toselli.

The Award-Winning LIYANA Opens #RoxFilm20 on Thursday, June 21 -Executive-produced by Thandie Newton
(HBO’s Westworld, MISSION IMPOSSIBLE II, and Crash)

A Boy. A Girl. A Dream: Love on Election Night Closes #RoxFilm20 on Sunday, June 30 at Fenway – The romantic drama premiered in the NEXT category at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival

LIYANA. directed by Aaron and Amanda Kopp. Photo courtesy of the Roxbury
International Film Festival,

The critically acclaimed film LIYANA, that’s part animated fable, part observational documentary, officially kicked off the 20th anniversary of the Roxbury International Film Festival on Thursday, June 21 at 7:00pm at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston. Sakheni Dlamini, the film’s producer and
a graduate of Simmons College, was in attendance for a post-screening Q&A.

Directed and produced by husband-and wife team, Aaron and Amanda Kopp, LIYANA tells the story of how five orphaned Swazi children turn their past trauma into creative fuel for an original collective
fairytale, in which they send a young girl on a dangerous quest to save the day. The film is beautifully illustrated by Nigerian born art director Shofela Coker, teacher and co-founder of Coker Co-op, a collective that creates comics, sculptures, and digital media, and was awarded the Grand Jury Award for Best Documentary at the LA Film Festival and the Jury Award for Artistic Bravery at the Durban International Film Festival in South Africa.

A photo from Chico Colvard’s BLACK
MEMORABILIA. Photo courtesy of BLACK

A BOY. A GIRL. A DREAM: LOVE ON ELECTION NIGHT closes out RoxFilm on Sunday, June 30 at 6:30 p.m. at State Street Pavilion at Fenway. The contemporary love story stars Omari Hardwick (Power on
Starz) and Meagan Good (Think Like a Man, Star, Code Black) who meet on the night of the 2016 presidential election, fall in love, and challenge one another to pursue their broken dreams. Directed by Qasim Basir, the film also stars Jay Ellis from HBO’s Insecure and was executive produced by Good and Hardwick. Tickets can be purchased at

Scene from LOVE JACKED. Photo courtesy of Inner City Films

Featured at this year’s RoxFilm is LOVE JACKED, a sophisticated small town romantic comedy centered around Maya, a headstrong 28-year-old with artistic ambitions and her father Ed, who wants a dutiful daughter to run the family store. Ed is shocked when Maya, asserting her independence, decides to travel to Africa for inspiration and returns with a fiancé who is not quite what he seems. The film stars Amber Stevens-West, Shamier Anderson, Keith David, Mike Epps, Demetrius Grosse, Lyriq Bent, Marla Gibbs, Angela Gibbs, and Nicole Lyn and is directed by Alfons Adetuyi.

Poster LIKE FINE SILK directed by
Sandra Manzanares and Ben Mankoff. Design by Cubby Golden.

The Roxbury International Film Festival (June 20-30) is a competitive festival that awards certificates in the categories of Audience Favorite, Narrative Film, Documentary Film, Narrative Short, Documentary Short, Youth, Emerging Filmmaker, with a special award named after award-winning filmmaker Henry Hampton.

Zoe Renee as Summer in Nilia Mu’min’s ZINN. Photo by Bruce Cole.

On Wednesday, June 20, RoxFilm and the Museum of Fine Arts presented a free “sunset cinema” screening of BLACK PANTHER in celebration of Juneteenth. The screening was held at 8:30 p.m., on the Huntington Avenue lawn (weather permitting), with live music, lawn games, and art-making activities beginning at 7:00 p.m.

For aspiring filmmakers and producers, the festival is hosting the free event, “From Martin to MIT: A Conversation with Topper Carew” on Sunday, June 24 (Location/Time: TBA).

The intimate film gathering Dinner and a Movie returned on Monday, June 25 at the Haley House Bakery Café with Reelblack founder Mike D. discussing his new project Black Film Now, as well as the importance of supporting African American films and their directors.

In celebration of its 30th anniversary, RoxFilm and Young Black Professionals bring a throwback screening of COMING TO AMERICA to Hibernian Hall on Tuesday, June 26 at 7:30 p.m.

Sponsored by Onyx Spectrum Technology, Massport, Boston Red Sox, SAG/AFTRA, Blue Cross Blue Shield, and Leah S. Randolph of HALO Productions, Black Star Enterprises, and more. The Festival will also feature Q&A with filmmakers, events and filmmaker hangouts.

Under the direction of Lisa Simmons, the Roxbury International Film Festival (RoxFilm) supports media makers of color and others who have an interest in creating and developing new and diverse images of people of color in film, video and performing arts. The festival collaborates with many arts institutions and organizations whose mission it is to promote and support independent artists and contribute to the creative economy of the Commonwealth.

Tickets are on sale at

Visit: to purchase festival passes and for more information.

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Our 2018 Summer Festival Edition

The rapture of the crowds who will be streaming into film festivals all over New England is captured in this superb photo of a sea of faces loving what they are seeing. Our cover shot is of a Nantucket Film Festival event at the ever famous ‘Sconset Casino on the westerly side of the Nantucket Island.

Our cover is meant to inspire and to remind you that you need to plan well as this is a big year for fi lm festivals in New England. New England has a summer of them, many of them previewed in this edition. I hope you enjoy our previews and hot picks. Each festival has a unique personality and special character. For a diff erent perspective, try out volunteering to work at a festival. Every festival needs genuinely interested volunteers.

Festivals work year around looking for the fi lms that will be just right for their character, finding those films that you may otherwise not have a chance to see. Often a festival will give you an opportunity to see films before they are released and that can be exciting. Many of New England’s film festivals have special guests you will want to meet and mingle with. Read about them here.
All our festivals are a good place to do just that.

So it’s time, badges are being picked up. Lights will be dimmed as cinematic stories of every genre unspool to delight all of us.

Our cover photo is courtesy of the Nantucket Film Festival. Our Cover Design is by IMAGINE Design Editor Monique Walton.

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AIFF Call For Entries

When: October 26-29, 2017
Where: Capitol Theatre | 204 Mass Ave | Arlington MA

Indie filmmakers link:

High School Student filmmakers link:

Many exciting happenings…

Conversations with AIFF Series (2) May 31st at ACMi | 85 Park Ave | Arlington Hights | 02476

Poster Contest Competition & Awards: Old Schwamb Mill Museum

7th Annual Poster Contest | Press Announcement and Reception | Friday, April 28th, 7:00 PM
Old Schwamb Mill Museum
14 Mill Lane, Arlington MA

Exhibition of Posters – Live Music – Storytelling – Poetry Reading
Hors d’oeuvres & Beverages Served
Come and celebrated the 7th Edition of the AIFF Poster Contest

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Cape Cod Festival of Arab & Middle Eastern Cinema Announces Full Schedule of Films for 2017

Cape Cod, MA — The Cape Cod Festival of Arab & Middle Eastern Cinema has released today its full four-day schedule of screenings and events to take place May 4 – 7, 2017. Tickets are now on sale and full information is available online at

The full schedule is listed below. Interviews, high-resolution images, and trailer links are available upon request.

The Cape Cod Festival of Arab & Middle Eastern Cinema was founded in 2012 by Rebecca M. Alvin, an independent filmmaker, teacher and writer who lives in Brewster, Mass. The biennial festival celebrates the cinema of the Arab World and the Middle East, focusing on works made by filmmakers of Arab and/or Middle Eastern descent living around the world, with the goal of sharing films most Americans are unable to access and fostering cross cultural understanding by accentuating the ability of the cinema to generate empathy and dialogue. The festival receives support from the Chatham Cultural Council, the Provincetown Cultural Council, and the Wellfleet Cultural Council.

Rebecca Alvin is an independent filmmaker and Associate Teaching Professor at The New School in New York City. She is also a writer and editor of Provincetown Magazine. The festival is one of several film programs she has offered to the Cape community under the umbrella of the Cape Cod Film Society program, which she founded in 2002. The Festival is produced with support from the Chatham Cultural Council, Provincetown Cultural Council, and Wellfleet Cultural Council. Additional sponsors and support, as well as volunteers, are still being sought for this year’s events.

For more information visit and to be included on the mailing list, please send email to


Thursday, May 4, 6 p.m.
Opening Night Film & Reception at the Chatham Orpheum Theater: Halal Love (and Sex) by Assad Fouladkar
Halal Love
The 2017 Cape Cod Festival of Arab & Middle Eastern Cinema kicks off wth Assad Fouladkar’s Halal Love (and Sex), a Lebanese comedy about regular everyday people working with their Muslim faith and their romantic entanglements, trying not to sacrifice either. The film will screen after a pre-screening reception featuring Middle Eastern hors d’oeuvres and cash bar.

Preceded by the U.S. short film E.A.S. by Kays Al-Atrakchi

Friday, May 5, 7 p.m.

Spotlight on Syria: Houses Without Doors by Avo Kaprealian at Wellfleet Preservation Hall
Houses Without Doors
This Syrian documentary portrays the changes in the life of an Armenian family on Aleppo’s frontline in Al Midan, an area that brought shelter to the persecuted Armenians 100 years ago and today to many displaced Syrians. From the balcony of his home, the director films with a small camera the changes in his neighborhood and his own family, interweaving his images with extracts from classical films to illustrate the parallels between the Armenian genocide and Syrians’ reality today.

Preceded by the Saudi/U.S. short film Daesh Girl by Abdul Almutairi

Saturday, May 6, 4 p.m.
Tribute to Iranian Filmmaker Abbas Kiarostami: Screening of Taste of Cherry with Introduction by Professor Jamsheed Akrami of William Paterson University at Wellfleet Preservation Hall
Taste of Cherry
Professor Jamsheed Akrami will introduce the late Iranian filmmaker Abbas Kiarostami’s “Taste of Cherry” and discuss the film afterward. Winner of the Palme d’Or at the 1997 Cannes Film Festival, Iranian auteur Abbas Kiarostami’s Taste of Cherry is an emotionally complex meditation on life and death. Middle-aged Mr. Badii (Homayoun Ershadi) drives through the hilly outskirts of Tehran—searching for someone to rescue or bury him. It will be shown preceded by a new Iranian short film dedicated to Kiarostami and followed by discussion with Professor Akrami.

Preceded by the Iranian short film dedicated to Kiarostami: Only Five Minutes by Mohammad Mohammadian

Saturday, May 6, 7 p.m.

Regional Premiere: Tickling Giants by Sara Taksler at Wellfleet Preservation Hall

In the midst of the Egyptian Arab Spring, Bassem Youssef makes a decision that’s every mother’s worst nightmare… He leaves his job as a heart surgeon to become a full—time comedian. Dubbed, “The Egyptian Jon Stewart”, Bassem creates the satirical show, Al Bernameg. The weekly program quickly becomes the most viewed television program in the Middle East, with 30 million viewers per episode. The Daily Show with Jon Stewart averaged two million viewers. In a country where free speech is not settled law, Bassem’s show becomes as controversial as it popular. He and his staff must endure physical threats, protests, and legal action, all because of jokes. Directed by a member of The Daily Show production team.

Preceded by the Iranian short film Light Sight by Seyed M. Tabatabaei

Sunday, May 7, 7 p.m.
Closing Night Selection: Yallah! Underground by Farid Eslam at WOMR Studios in Provincetown

The Festival closes with a screening of Farid Eslam’s “Yallah! Underground,” a documentary about Arab underground artists and musicians in four countries (Egypt, Lebanon, Jordan, Palestine, and Israel), including Zeid Hamdan, Shadi Zaqtan, and Maii Waleed Yassin, with an eye toward music and art as political and social comment in an area of the world that has recently been experiencing a major cultural and generational shift. The screening is co-sponsored by WOMR-FM (92.1FM) Outermost Community Radio.

Preceded by the Palestinian short film I Am Palestine by Kai Staats and Farid Kirreh

The Cape Cod Festival of Arab & Middle Eastern Cinema was produced by Rebecca Alvin’s Cape Cod Film Society, a project of the Provincetown Community Compact, a not for profit 501(c)3 organization. This program received support from the Chatham Local Cultural Council, Provincetown Local Cultural Council, and Wellfleet Local Cultural Council.

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WHAT | 21st Annual Nantucket Film Festival

WHEN | June 22 – 27, 2016

MISSION | To promote the cultural awareness and appreciation of the art of screenwriting in the world of cinema.


ABOUT THE NANTUCKET FILM FESTIVAL | The Nantucket Film Festival was founded by brother and sister team Jill and Jonathan Burkhart in 1996 to promote the cultural awareness and appreciation of the fine art of screenwriting in the world of cinema. These days, NFF has become one of the premier destination film festivals in the world. Visitors come from all over to experience the preview screenings, unique signature programs, and stand out hospitality on a magical island rich with history, a friendly atmosphere, and beautiful sandy beaches. In addition to screening over 100 films across six days, NFF presents the Screenwriters Tribute, the All-Star Comedy Roundtable hosted by Ben Stiller, In Their Shoes… hosted by Chris Matthews, Late Night Storytelling, and our daily Morning Coffee With… series.

ACK FF [2016]

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Camden International Film Festival 2015

CAMDEN-FF-HEADER PICCamden International Film Festival 2015

September 17 – 20th Camden and Rockport, Maine

Leaders in the documentary film industry convene for a series of screenings, master classes, panels, workshops, pitch sessions and the Sustainable Maine Engagement Summit

The Camden International Film Festival (CIFF) has unveiled the lineup for its seventh Points North Documentary Forum. The three-day conference program runs concurrently with the festival from September 17 – 20, 2015 at the historic Camden Opera House in Camden, Maine, and Rockport Opera House in Rockport, Maine. This year’s program will feature four master classes focused on directing, editing, producing and interactive media, panel discussions, case studies, networking events and the sixth annual Points North Pitch, which is now part of the year-long Points North Fellowship for filmmakers with feature documentaries in development. The lineup marks the continued growth of CIFF’s Points North program as a launching pad for the next generation of documentary artists, as well as a unique space for the international documentary community to reflect on the craft, business and future of nonfiction storytelling.

Six projects have been selected to participate in the 2015 Points North Fellowship and Points North Pitch. These filmmaking teams will travel to Camden for a day of pitch training and industry mentorship at the Maine Media Workshops with Sundance Institute’s Kristin Feeley and producer Andrea Meditch. On September 19, the filmmakers will take the stage at the Camden Opera House and pitch their documentary works-in-progress before a live audience and receive critical feedback from a panel that includes representatives from HBO, CNN Films, TIME Inc., Vimeo, Sundance Institute, Tribeca Film Institute, Catapult Film Fund, and Impact Partners, among others. One project will receive the Points North Pitch Award and Modulus Finishing Fund, which includes a $10,000 in-kind post-production package from Boston-based Modulus Studios and three consultations with the Tribeca Film Institute.

Filmmakers, students and other Points North attendees will have numerous opportunities to connect with industry delegates throughout the festival weekend, both formally during master classes, panels, and one-on-one meetings, and informally during CIFF parties and receptions. For filmmakers interested in strengthening their storytelling craft, Points North will feature three additional master classes with Academy Award winning director Alex Gibney, producer Andrea Meditch, and veteran editor David Teague.

Since 2011, the Points North Documentary Forum has been highlighting how nonfiction storytelling is evolving in response to digital media technologies and platforms. This year, the Forum will include two
sessions in its Storyforms strand – a performance of the collaborative, multimedia documentary LIVING
LOS SURES, and an interactive documentary master class led by Alexandre Brachet, a digital storytelling pioneer and founder of the Paris-based agency Upian. Points North will close with “The New News,” a program of short films produced or commissioned by news organizations, followed by a panel discussion with editors and filmmakers focused on the convergence of documentary and journalism on digital platforms and the changing nature of audience engagement with the news.

“We’re honored and excited to have the opportunity to continue to develop a platform for filmmakers to
introduce their projects to some of the most influential decision-makers in the documentary industry,” says Ben Fowlie, Founder and Executive Director of the Camden International Film Festival. “It’s a privilege to bring together such a diverse, talented and inspiring group of participants in Camden for this year’s Forum,” says Points North Director Sean Flynn. “Whether you’re developing a feature, producing a short film for the web, exploring interactive media, using media as a tool for social
change, or interested in the craft of documentary storytelling – there’s something here for everyone.”

Founded in 2005 and recognized as one of the top documentary film festivals in the world, the Camden
International Film Festival (CIFF) brings the finest non-fiction cinema to the rugged coast of Maine,
showcasing over eighty documentary feature and short films from around the globe each fall. Additional
year-round programming includes the CIFF Selects screening series and the Engagement Summit, a unique program that connects Maine-based nonprofit leaders with documentary films and filmmakers to develop community-based social action campaigns designed to engage communities.

The Points North Documentary Forum provides emerging documentarians with opportunities for professional development and creative inspiration. and an opportunity to discover new voices in documentary media who are pushing the boundaries of the form and re-imagining the role of nonfiction storytelling in society. Programs include the year-round Points North Fellowship, master classes, workshops and international short form pitch opportunities such as The New York Times’ Op Docs Pitch (2013) and, most recently, the AJ+ Pitch (2014). Past industry participants in the Forum include HBO, A&E, BBC, Participant Media, Al Jazeera America, Discovery, PBS, Ford Foundation, Tribeca Film Institute, Sundance Institute, Vimeo and Kickstarter.

The 2015 Camden International Film Festival and Points North Documentary Forum will take place September 17 – 20 in Camden, Rockport and Rockland, Maine. The Camden International Film Festival is supported in part by the National Endowment for the Arts, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, CNN Films and Vimeo.

Passes to the 2015 CIFF and Points North are now available for purchase at
Access to the full conference program is open to all CIFF passholders. Passes are now on sale on the
Camden International Film Festival website.

For more information, please visit:

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Arlington Short Animation Festival (and Workshops too)!


ACMi and the Friends of Robbins Farm Park announce the third annual Arlington Short Animation Film Festival, an evening outdoor festival showcasing local animated work for all ages.

Date: Saturday, August 29 (Rain date: August 30)

Time: Films will begin at Sunset (around 8 pm)

Place: Robbins Farm Park

Want to show your own film in the festival?

Deadline for submissions is August 1, 2015

For more information about how to submit and the festival itself,

visit the festival page.

And more great news for aspiring animators!

Starting TONIGHT, July 8, the Studio Knights (ACMi’s in-house production group) are offering a series of four weekly Animation Workshops on Wednesdays from 7-9 pm. Learn all you need to know to create your own animated film, then submit it to the festival and come to your own Premiere on August 29th!

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