20th annual Black Harvest Film Festival honors Chaz and Roger Ebert for their contributions to film industry


From August 1- 28, the Gene Siskel Film Center presents the 20th anniversary edition of the Black Harvest Film Festival, celebrating the stories, images, heritage, and history of the black experience in the U.S., and around the world. It’s hard to believe this remarkable event is celebrating twenty years. As an example of its success, many of its early discoveries have gone on to become established career filmmakers, while new, emerging filmmakers are making their mark in a big way. This anniversary festival promises to be bigger and more diverse than ever, with personal appearances by filmmakers at almost every show.

As in previous years, there will something for everyone. Opening night, Friday, August 1, NBC 5’s Lee Ann Trotter emcees A Black Harvest Feast. Included is the presentation of this year’s Deloris Jordan Award for Excellence in Community Leadership to Chaz Ebert and (posthumously) Roger Ebert for their work in advancing minority and independent filmmaking — efforts which Chaz tirelessly continues through RogerEbert.com. August 28’s closing night will be equally memorable when Norry Niven’s FROM ABOVE starring Danny Glover premiere’s.

Two special events are designed with the aspiring or beginning filmmaker in mind. The August 10 free workshop The Realities of Screenwriting will provide valuable tips on ideas and getting started with your vision. On August 16, Action! The Real Deal About Filmmaking: Money, Casting, Production, and Distribution, this year’s edition of the free, ever-popular Black Harvest panel and DIY workshop, will cover every aspect of production and feature down-to-earth advice and practical information from our guest producers and directors. Both are led by Black Harvest Festival consultant Sergio Mims.

Enjoy the art exhibit Fresh Juju, curated by Rashayla Marie Brown, in the gallery-café throughout the festival.
The Black Harvest Film Festival is supported proudly by returning producing sponsors NBC 5 Chicago. For more information Gene Siskel Film Center of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, 164 N. State St., 312-846-2800. www.siskelfilmcenter.org/blackharvest_2014

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