The American Black Film Festival (ABFF)continued its stellar line-up of events on day two of the festival yesterday. Attendees got the opportunity to experience seminars and panels held by prominent members of the entertainment industry, view spotlight screenings of exciting new films, and cap the night off with an exhilarating white party at Nikki Beach club.
Day two kicked off with a master class titled “Becoming A Showrunner” held by Emmy Award-nominated television producer Korin Huggins, who provided the crowd with insight on how to break into the industry and carve a path towards some of the most coveted professional positions in entertainment. The day also featured several “Business of Entertainment Seminars.” “Killer Creativity: A New Breed” explored how innovation, authenticity and boldness can help to make a memorable mark in the industry. “Unlocking The Mystery of Deal Points,” led by Entertainment Attorney Lisa E. Davis, aimed to help filmmakers navigate the major deal points of distribution agreements. “Path to Power” featured a panel discussion of the stars of the popular show Power, Omari Hardwick, Joseph Sikora, Rotimi, and Naturi Naughton talking about their journeys to success. Audiences listened closely as they relished the chance to learn the ins and outs from some of the best in the business.
ABFF festivalgoers were invited to the Cadillac VR Lounge on Thursday for a cocktail reception where they had the chance to build their very own all-new Cadillac XT4 with an immersive virtual reality experience. The first 100 people who took part in the VR experience and posted on their social channels using #Cadillac or #ABFF2018, received a limited-edition ABFF t-shirt designed by legendary film graphic designer, Kenny Gravillis. Tristan ‘Mack’ Wilds stopped by the lounge to check out Cadillac in Virtual Reality between festival activities.
The “ABFF Talks” series presented two events on the second day of the festival. The first, “NBC Universal First Look Panels,” consisted of a two-part discussion that was led by panelists Y’lan Noel, Lex Scott Davis, and Gerard McMurray of upcoming film, The First Purge, and Sherri Shepherd, Essence Atkins, Bresha Webb, and Diallo Riddle of NBC shows Marlon and Trial & Error. Audiences were treated to an inside look by cast-members at all of the intricacies that go into these well-known productions. The second “ABFF Talks” event of the day, titled “Black Love: Clips & Conversations,” featured the creators of OWN’s BLACK LOVE docuseries, along with Michael Jai White, Gillian Waters, Devale Ellis, and Khadeen Ellis as they discussed love and marriage in the Black community.
HBO also held it’s 21st annual Short Film Competition yesterday at the festival. Five short films screened in competition for the HBO Short Film Award and a $10,000 cash prize. The event was hosted by Bevy Smith, host of Page Six TV and Bevelations on Sirius XM.
ABFF attendees also had the chance to view several exclusive screenings of new films yesterday. Down For Whatever was the winner of last year’s TV One Screenplay competition and was followed by a Q&A with the film’s writer/director Tim Folsome, cast members LeToya Luckett, Hosea Chanchez, Bre-Z, Imani Hakim, and producer Eric Tomosunas of Swirl Films. . Also screened was The Six Day Race, a seven minute documentary style tribute film exploring the story of track cyclist Marshall ‘Major’ Taylor, Whitney, a compelling in-depth look at the life and music of the late Whitney Houston, and the newest addition and prequel to the Purge film series, The First Purge. The First Purge’s screening was followed by a Q&A with cast members Y’lan Noeland Lex Scott Davis.
Day two of the 2018 American Black Film Festival went out with a bang, as attendees enjoyed the legendary white party at beach club venue Nikki Beach, and listened to DJ D-Nice providing the entertainment.