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‘Love and Basketball’ creator to be honored at Athena Film Festival

Demetria Irwin | 2/5/2015, 2:17 p.m.
Noted director, writer and producer Gina Prince-Bythewood will be an honoree at the fifth annual Athena Film Festival, which will ...
Film poster for "Dear White People"

Special to the AmNews

Noted director, writer and producer Gina Prince-Bythewood will be an honoree at the fifth annual Athena Film Festival, which will be in New York City at Barnard College. The festival highlights the achievements of women in media. Filled with screenings, workshops and panels, this year’s packed weekend also includes a lifetime achievement award for Academy Award-winning actress Jodie Foster.

Gina Prince-Bythewood

Gina Prince-Bythewood

Prince-Bythewood’s acknowledgment from the Athena Film Festival is yet another notable win for a Black woman this award season. Viola Davis has already snagged a People’s Choice Award and a Screen Actors Guild Award for her work on Shonda Rhimes’ ABC hit series “How to Get Away With Murder.” Uzo Aduba also earned a Screen Actors Guild Award for her portrayal of Crazy Eyes on the Netflix

series “Orange Is the New Black.”

The romantic drama “Beyond the Lights” is Prince-Bythewood’s most recent industry credit. The film stars Gugu Mbatha-Raw and Nate Parker. Fans also know her work from “The Secret Life of Bees” and fan favorite “Love and Basketball.” She was also the producer on several episodes of the late 1990s hit series “Felicity.” Hardcore “Scandal” fans will recognize Jake Ballard (Scott Foley) as Noel on that show. Prince-Bythewood will be conducting a master class about directing during the festival weekend.

Many of the screenings at this year’s Athena Film Festival prominently feature women of color—including “Beyond the Lights”; “Dear White People”; the short film “Afronauts,” about Zambian astronauts; and the documentary “Britany Griner: Lifesize.”

The Athena Film Festival is Feb. 5 through Feb. 8 at Barnard College. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit athenafilmfestival.com/film_year/2015/page/2