The 20th annual Urbanworld Film Festival (www.urbanworld.org), presented by Revolt with founding sponsor HBO, is one of the largest competitive film festivals and is designed to advance the presence and impact of diverse content creators.
All screenings will take place at Manhattan’s AMC Empire 25, 234 W. 42nd Street. The festival will screen more than 68 films, including Disney’s “Queen of Katwe” Thursday, Sept. 22, at 7:45 p.m.
“Queen of Katwe,” directed by Mira Nair, stars Golden Globe® nominee David Oyelowo, Tony® nominee and Academy Award® winner Lupita Nyong’o and newcomer Madina Nalwanga. The film is based on the vibrant true story of a young girl from the streets of rural Uganda whose world rapidly changes when she is introduced to the game of chess, and, as a result of the support she receives from her family and community, is instilled with the confidence and determination she needs to pursue her dream of becoming an international chess champion.
The Sept. 22 screening will be followed by a Q&A with Oyelowo, one of Urbanworld’s 2016 festival ambassadors, and director Nair.
“With Revolt as our presenting partner and HBO as founding partner, we are honored to elevate and showcase an inclusive representation of talented storytellers,” said Gabrielle Glore, festival director and head of programming, Urbanworld Film Festival. “In our 20th anniversary year, Urbanworld’s curated selections highlight content from around the world, enabling the festival to further expand the gaze on the many distinct voices that deserve to be heard. We are proud to be a welcoming home for filmmakers, film enthusiasts and industry partners, all of whom return to Urbanworld to celebrate the artistry and craft of filmmaking.”
Under the short section, the buzz is strong around the award winning short “Balcony,” by Harlem-based filmmaker Toby Fell-Holden, which will screen under Shorts Program 1 on
Sept. 22 at AMC Empire Theater 12, For tickets, visit http://www.urbanworld.org/2016/balcony.
Fell-Holden has been called a “breakout talent” and “courageous” as his film “Balcony” explores the complicated veils of prejudice swirling around the Muslim communities and LBGTQ issues in our modern society.
An excerpt from AnOther, out of London, describes “Balcony”:
“With its hard-hitting story and cynical young narrator, Fell-Holden’s short film was screened in the ‘Movements: Refugee and Migrant’ strand of the LSFF to an audible, collective gasp from the audience. An Afghan father-daughter live in social isolation on an English council estate, but a tentative friendship blossoms between the daughter, Dana, and our narrator Tina. Tina tells us of Dana’s likely life—a controlling father and lonely days—as she becomes Dana’s protector at school. Yet Tina’s own life experiences has her only seeing the dark where there may in fact be light. It’s a mature and affecting work from a noteworthy new talent.
Below are other highlights from the Urbanworld 2016 film slate:
“Class Divide”—Directed by Marc Levin, presented by HBO Documentary Films
“Black”—Directed by Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah, presented by Saboteur Media
THE REVOLT YOUNG FILMMAKERS SHOWCASE
“Loved Like This”— Directed by Christopher Lewis Dawkins (U.S. premiere)
“Madaran”—Directed by Rayka Zehtabchi (East Coast premiere)
U.S. NARRATIVE FEATURES
“72 Hours: A Brooklyn Love Story?” —Directed by Raafi Rivero (New York premiere)
“Chee & T”—Directed by Tanuj Chopra (East Coast premiere)
WORLD NARRATIVE FEATURES
“Dar Noir” (Tanzania)—Directed by Hamadi Mwapachu (U.S. premiere)
“Gidi Blues” (Nigeria)—Directed by Femi Odugbemi (U.S. premiere)
“Beatbox Boom Bap Around the World” (France/Germany/U.S.)—Directed by Pascal Tessaud (U.S. Premiere)
“[Re]defined”—Directed by Danae Grandison (New York premiere)
“Balcony”—Directed by Toby Fell-Holden
“Chameleon”—Directed by Reza Dahya (New York Premiere)
For more information, visit www.urbanworld.org.