September 27, 2019 marked the start of the American Black Film Festival held in London.
The festival kicked off with a screening of the action thriller Black and Blue at Picturehouse Central. This is the American Black Film Festivals first Global Film Series held in association with Screen Nation and sponsored by Sony Pictures Entertainment. The American Black Film Festival (ABFF) is an annual event that is dedicated o empowering black artists and showcasing content by and about people of African descent.
Black and Blue tells the story of a rookie cop (Naomie Harris) who captures the murder of a young drug dealer on her body cam. She discovers the murder to be a result of corrupt cops and must turn to a community member to help bring justice while also having to account for the people who want revenge. The film immediately begins with the image of our main character, Alicia West, running in a relatively wealthy, white neighborhood. She is then stopped and harassed by cops who only halt upon discovering that’s “she is a blue”, and realizes she is one of them. This immediately portrays the institutional racism that many Black people face daily. For Alicia West, she battles with on how to simultaneously be Black and Blue.
The Global Film Series brings together people from all over the world to marvel at the renowned actors and directors participating in the festival. More and more black actors and filmmakers have contributed to revolutionizing Hollywood’s top box office films. The film series successfully shines a light on these actors. Of the festival’s international expansion, Wayne Garvie(President of International Production, Sony Pictures Television) says, “London is a vibrant, important source of diverse creative talent and a fantastic place to showcase emerging content. We are excited to launch the ABFF Global Film Series in London, which highlights Sony Pictures Entertainment’s commitment to harnessing the power of diversity and promoting inclusivity so that talented people can thrive.”
The ABFF Global Film Series will visit other major cultural hubs, after London, including Madrid, Cape Town and Paris in 2020. For more information, please visit http://www.abff.com/.