TCBFF

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Women take charge at Twin Cities Black Film Festival

By Charles Hallman

Staff Writer

 

Women ruled at this year’s Twin Cities Black Film Festival (TCBFF) as several female produced and directed films and shorts were screened in September. “Anyone who takes the time and the courage to do this, I’m all for that,” notes TCBFF Founder-Director Natalie Morrow. “I’m not a filmmaker, but I know that it’s a lot of work that goes into filmmaking — just trying to find your funding, your actors, your editing and all that.”

“I write a lot [but] I went to school to learn how to edit so I can do my own projects,” said writer-director Schonte Hamilton. “We’re looking at short after short… that’s just wonderful to see,” observed Deedra Miller, who wrote and also starred in her own film. Continue Reading →

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Supporting our own

Community awareness, trust cited as factors in Black business and event success
 
By Charles Hallman

Staff Writer

 

With the African American community being relatively small in Minnesota, it can be challenging for Black business owners and those planning events targeted at Blacks to obtain the level of support they are seeking. But there are at least two events that continue to gain momentum each year. This year’s Twin Cities Black Film Festival (TCBFF) appeared to be attended by many Blacks. “This festival was one of our most successful festivals, because I did try to tap into those unknown groups” such as community groups with large numbers of African American in attendance, reported TCBFF Founder-Director Natalie Morrow. She noted that during the four-day event held in September, one film was sold out and other screenings had large crowds. Continue Reading →

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Twin Cities Black Film Festival 2013 local filmmakers

 

(Part one in a series of articles about the Twin Cities Black Film Festival)

By Charles Hallman

Staff writer

 

Local filmmakers were featured at this year’s Twin Cities Black Film Festival (TCBFF).  The MSR was in attendance at the four-day event held September 26-29 at St. Louis Park’s Showplace Icon Theaters. “We had 11 [local] filmmakers, and his was the only one that sold out,” proclaimed TCBFF Founder-Director Natalie Morrow on Ménages, a two-hour film directed by Edith Rene Tchuichoui.  It was part of her “Celebration of Minnesota Filmmakers.”   The movie’s main characters are Samantha, a U.S. citizen and Joseph, a Cameroon immigrant are brought together who are forced to make choices based on emotions or interests. “I started working on this movie in ’09,” said the filmmaker, who added that it was originally filmed as a short, but later lengthened it after audience reactions that saw it were positive. Continue Reading →

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Twin Cities Black Film Festival founder on 10 years of stars and screenings

By Charles Hallman

Staff Writer

 

Ten years ago, Natalie Morrow wanted to establish an annual Black film screening event on the comparable level as similar events held in Atlanta and Los Angeles. Since then, the Twin Cities Black Film Festival (TCBFF) has been held each September in such places as Augsburg College (twice), at downtown hotels and once at now-vacant Block E. Stars such as Nate Parker, cinema icons such as Pam Grier and countless screenwriters, directors and documentary producers have been special guests over the years as well. Among this year’s 14-film festival September 27-30 at St. Anthony Main Theatre included a tribute to the late Whitney Houston (The Bodyguard), two unheralded 1970s classics (The Spook Who Sat by the Door and Black Brigade), a documentary on the final season of sports at Minneapolis Community and Technical College and a comedy filmed in the Twin Cities. “I’m happy that I am still on the right track in selecting the right films,” says Morrow in an interview with the MSR.

High Card Trumps, a six-minute film, was among several shorts shown at this year’s TCBFF. Continue Reading →

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Homegrown filmmaker has Hollywood ambitions

Robert Hayles overcomes obstacles for his MN-made first feature

By Charles Hallman
Staff Writer

 

Sitting somewhere in the dark was Robert Hayles, watching a comedy motion picture at St. Anthony Main Theatre. The 118-minute feature, Don’t Hate the Player, Hate the Game, is about longtime best friends and total opposites Richard (James Griffen, Jr.) and Marcus (DeAndre Sanders): Richard fancies himself a player with the ladies, and Marcus plays video games like a cloistered monk in prayer. “It’s a crazy comedy about video games and relationships,” says the movie promos. “This is the first time I’ve seen it on the big screen. Continue Reading →

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