American Black Film Festival Shines June 11-14

(released 6/9/2015)

Festival founder Jeff Friday and celebrity ambassador Taraji P. Henson will be opening up Manhattan, New York City with the 2015 American Black Film Festival from June 11-14, 2015. Friday founded the festival with the aim of promoting diversity in film and television. The workshops, master classes, premieres and screening blocks are the up and coming and those currently elevating the Hollywood game.

DOPE will be the opening night film with a red carpet arrival set for this NY premiere. DOPE as a film has buzz coming out of Sundance audiences regarding the quality of this film. Open Road Films is set to launch the film to the public June 19th. The film will be followed by an opening night party with an "Old School Hip Hop" theme including DJ D-Nice and a performance by Doug E. Fresh to make it authentic. That is just day one.

Day two of the festival, the screenings begin at the AMC Empire 25 in theaters 12 and 13 and run from 11:00a.m.-11:00p.m. Speaking of Empire, the festival will bring ambassador Taraji P. Henson in conversation with moderator Gayle King.  Later in the day, The Men of TNT will discuss their climb to the network ranks. Another highlight, Comedians will be the evening entertainment and in competition presented by HBO with Ricky Smiley as host.

Writers, filmmakers, and producers, take note of the master classes and workshops on the schedule. "Fundamentals of Independent Film Production", "Writing for Television", "Actor's Workshop", and "Crowdfunding for Filmmakers" are just some of the class titles.

Day three, see the final three competitors in the screening of McDonald's "Lovin" video contest. Entries were to film a 90 second video to bring to life the idea "A little more lovin can change a lot." The winner of the contest will win a package of film equipment valued at $2,500 and a chance to have their work featured on McDonald's The HBO competition is anchoring this festival with year 18 of offering a platform to elevate diverse filmmakers. The day will also bring what's hot in Hollywood and a workshop on how to monetize a web series.

The final day of the festival has producer host Larry Wilmore moderating a conversation with Blackish creator Kenya Barris and actress Tracee Ellis Ross. Boyz n the Hood will be saluted with a special screening and Q&A with director Jon Singleton. Awards ceremony will take place to celebrate the best of the fest and honor Career Achievement Award recipient Actress Jennifer Lewis.

This is just a highlight. There are still many details to be discovered on the festival's website. For more details and to get involved go to:

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