Sing Sing to Open 2024 Martha’s Vineyard African American Film Festival 5

Colman Domingo‘s prison drama Sing Sing is set to open the 22nd Martha’s Vineyard African American Film Festival (MVAAFF).

This year’s lineup also includes Christine Swanson’s road drama Albany Road, starring Renée Elise Goldsberry and Lynn Whitfield; Dawn Porter’s Luther Vandross documentary Luther: Never too Much; the doc short The Rebel Girls; and Harvard historian Vincent Brown’s doc How Do You Remember the Days of Slavery?

MVAAFF, which commits itself to promoting diversity in the film industry and providing a platform for Black and Brown filmmakers, runs from Aug. 2 through Aug. 10.

Screening on Aug. 2, A24’s Sing Sing, directed by Greg Kwedar, tells the story of a group of prisoners at Sing Sing Correctional Facility who attempt to stage their own original stage production. The film is notable for its cast featuring many real-life former inmates who took part in the prison theater program, starring alongside professional actors like Domingo and Paul Raci. The screening will be followed by a discussion with Domingo, producer Monique Walton and Gina Belafonte, president and CEO of Sankofa.org.

On Aug. 3, Warner Bros Television will present “A Color of Conversation” with actress and singer Sheryl Lee Ralph and The Hollywood Reporter‘s co-editor-in-chief Nekesa Mumbi Moody at the festival. Emmy-winner Ralph will discuss her recent career success on ABC’s award-winning series Abbott Elementary.

“We are beyond thrilled to mark 22 years of amplifying the voices and stories of Black filmmakers,” said Floyd Rance, founder of Run & Shoot Filmworks and producer and co-founder of the MVAAFF, in a statement. “From our beginnings in Park Slope, Brooklyn to the beautiful shores of Martha’s Vineyard, we are extremely proud of the financial impact felt by all island business, during the two weeks of the festival, and look forward to another year of celebrating Black excellence in film.”

Additional screenings, panels and events will be revealed in the coming weeks.

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