With topics ranging from African politics to modern relationships, the San Diego Black Film Festival will kick off on Thursday, Jan. 31.
Screenings will be held at the Reading Gaslamp Theater, located at 701 Fifth Ave. in downtown San Diego; the festival ends Sunday, Feb. 3.
Now in its 11th year, the festival's motto is "Spotlight on African American and African Diaspora Cinema" and features 100 films each year, including comedies, documentaries, animation and foreign entries.
The opening reception, set for Thursday, will feature special guest Dr. Tukufu Zuberi, host of the PBS series "History Detective," and his documentary "African Independence," followed by the drama "Silent Treatment."
Films set for screening include:
- "Dating," a 13-minute comedy (7:30 p.m., Jan. 31);
- "A.M. Mayhem," a look at the development of rap and hip-hop at a pioneering 1990s AM radio station, 6 p.m., Feb. 1;
- "One Last Sunset," about two sisters being last survivors of an apocalyptic virus that has turned the entire human population into zombies (at 6 p.m., Feb. 1);
- "Battle (Change From Within)," a documentary focuing on desegregating schools and housing in Columbia, Mo. (11 a.m. on Feb. 2);
- "Eva's Diamond," in which a mother embarks on a quest to clear her son's name and finds herself entangled in a chain of events linked to a man who terrified her years earlier (11 a.m., Feb. 3), and ;
- "Generation Me," focusing on a pop singer's online relationship which is made worse when she receives advice from friends. (2 p.m., Feb. 3).
Starting at noon on Feb. 2, the festival will feature numerous panel discussions on topics such as branding, product placement, producing and writing.
Along with films, the event features a dinner and tribute to Diahanne Carroll, the iconic actress who broke ground for African-American women in theater, television and film.
Carroll -- whose career spans six decades and includes an Emmy for the TV show "Julia," an Academy Award nomination for "Claudine," and a starring role the TV mega hit "Dynasty" -- will receive
the Millennium Award for Lifetime Achievement in Television & Motion Pictures on Feb. 2 at the Westin Gaslamp Quarter.
Participants will also have a chance to loosen up with with "Shaft Superfly" party, starting at 10 p.m. on Feb. 1 at the Reading Gaslamp.
Ticket prices range from $10 to $350 (the latter being for a festival VIP pass). Parking is available at the Horton Plaza.
For more information on the festival, go to http://www.sdbff.com/index.html or call 619-685-7215.