*Los Angeles – The Pan African Film and Arts Festival kicked off its 20th Anniversary in grand style Opening Night,February 9,2012 at the Archlight Theatres in Hollywood.
The occasion was to celebrate the premier of Screen Gems’ “Think Like A Man.” The movie is based on Steve Harvey’s best selling book “Think Like a Man, Act Like A Woman,” follows four interconnected and diverse men whose love lives are shaken up after the ladies they are pursuing buy Harvey’s book and start taking his advise to heart.When the band of brothers realize they have been betrayed by one of their own,they conspire using the book’s insider information to turn the tables and teach the women a lesson of their own.The movie is directed by Tim Story and written by Keith Merryman and David A.Newman.
The Red Carpet Arrival was smoking hot with celebrities who strolled into the Theatre for the premier of the movie Think Like a Man on a warm Southern Californina evening.
In attendance from the film were Screen Gems President Clint Culpepper, Jerry Ferrara, Meagan Good,Regina Hall, Kevin Hart, Taraji P.Henson, Terrence J, Romany Malco, Gary Owen, Gabrielle Union, Lala Anthony, Arielle Kebbel, Kelly Rowland, Lisa Leslie, producer Will Packer, writers Keith Merryman and David A.Newman director Tim Story.
The invited guests heating up the Red Carpet with their presence were Sean P. Diddy Combs, Jennifer Hudson, Serena Williams, Ne-Yo, Keke Palmer, Ya Ya DaCosta, Big Boi, Chef Che Gravy, Syesha Mercado, Gina Rodriguez, Morris Chestnut, Antonica Smith, Superstar Shyra, Melanie Fiona, Bill Duke, Jamie Patton, Phire Dawson, Sharon Leal, Melissa Ford, Elise Neal, Chili and Kenny Lattimore just to name a few. “Think Like A Man” opens Nationwide April 20, 2012.
Friday, February 10,the Pan African Film and Arts Festival featured a Special Night of Tributes to Recognize Artistic and Literary Accomplishments.
Loretta Devine-Emmy award-winning actress received Lifetime Achievement Award.
Meagan Good-actress,received Beach Richards Rising Star Actress Award
David Oyelowo-Canada Lee Rising Star Actor Award
Mr.Leon Garr-Community Treasure Award
Jewell Thais-Williams-Community Service Award
Pharoah Sanders-Artistic Achievement Award
Van Vicker-The African Channel Creative Achievement Award
Jimmy Jean-Louis-The African Channel Diasporan Award
Eric Kabera and the Rwanda Cinema Centre-The African Channel Visionary Award The Night of Tribute was hosted and produced by The African Channel and hosted by Michael Blackson of Ghana and Amira Attia of Egypt with special musical performance by Douye.Award Hostesses:Kadija Fadiga and Zambian Gloria Huwiler.
I can’t recall how many years that I have been attending the Pan African Film and Arts Festival. One thing for sure,the festival always showcased compelling,strong films representing the African Diaspora that has a broad appeal as witnessed by the diverse audience who attend the festival.
Social activism thru music was the underlying theme of the movies that I had the pleasure of viewing this weekend.Four of the five films viewed has a lot in common:Music is my Life,Politics My Mistress:The Oscar Brown Jr.Story,Bob Marley-The Making of a Legend, Mama Africa-Miriam Makeba and Fela-NYC:Fresh from Africa (the story of Fela Anikulapo Kuti). Their socially conscious lyrics continues to be powerful,relevant and uplifting for todays generation and generations to come.
Pianist Omar Sosa was featured in Oma Sosa Series features the splendid artistry of Mr.Omar Sosa in Fao,Omar Sosa: Light In the Sky and Souvenirs of Africa. All of the above mentioned movies were captivating and entertaining and offered brilliant insight to each subject.
I’m looking forward to returning to the Pan African Film Festival to view Chico and Rita a wonderful animated movie from Cuba,directed by Fernando Trueba, Javier Mariscal and Tono Errando. This movie has an awesome soundtrack. Check out www.chicoandrita.com to view the trailer and learn more about this movie that is also up for an Academy Award the end of this month.
Please visit www.paff.org to see what exciting movies and other events that awaits you at the 20th Anniversary Pan African Film and Arts Festival taken place at the Rave Theaters and the Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza. Additional information about the Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza www.crenshawplaza.com
Ricky Richardson is a Southern California based writer, music reviewer and photographer.contact him via: [email protected].