Since its inception in 1974, the Newark Black Film Festival (NBFF) has become known among its peers as the longest running black film festival in the United States. Throughout the years, it has continued to provide a progressive public forum for hundreds of emerging writers, directors, producers, performers and film buffs who enjoy African American and African Diaspora cinema. Screening in the summer months, the films that are shown reflect the full diversity of the black experience in America, both past and present. Each film selection encompasses a wide range of cinematic forms and formulas, from documentary to the avant-garde, for youth and adults.
The festival also features the Paul Robeson awards, a biennial competition which will be held in 2016.
The Festival is free of charge to the public and receives funding in the form of special grants from foundations and corporations. The 2015 Festival season is made possible by a grant from Bank of America. It is administered by the Newark Museum and planned by the NBFF Selection Committee, which includes such notables as screenwriter and playwright Richard Wesley, who wrote the screenplays for "Let's Do It Again," "Uptown Saturday Night," "Native Son," "Deacons for Defense" and "Mandela & DeKlerk, " and Jeff Friday, CEO and Co-founder of Film Life's American Black Film Festival.
Festival Participants 1974-2015
Zain Abdullah, Ph.D. Anthony Abulu John Amos Damani Baker Biyi Bandele Amiri Baraka Ras Baraka William Michael Barber Keith Beauchamp Camille Billops Carroll Parrott Blue Donald Bogle Coach Herman Boone Pearl Bowser Charles B. Brack Cesar Braga-Pinto Carl Brashear Jim Brown Prof. Marcia Wilson Brown N.L. Akili Buchanan Charles Burnett Rev. Gilbert Caldwell Richard Cammarieri Roy Capanella, Jr. Sonny Carson Pete Chatmon Benjamin Chavis Ayoka Chenzira Jean Claude Chiyuka Kathleen Collins Fatoumata Coulibaly Julie Dash David Davidson Bridget Davis Roy Decarava Ira Deutchman Ernest R. Dickerson Jane Dowell-Barton Neil Drumming Ava DuVernay Amber Edwards Hafiz Farid Chris Fetchko Kim Fields Lisa France Al Freeman, Jr. Marcus Garvey, Jr. Bill Gaskins Danny Glover
Dr. Gwendolyn Goldsby-Grant Shaheen Haq William Greaves Sam Greenlee Pam Grier Lisa Gay Hamilton Tanya Hamilton Richard Harding Thomas Allen Harris
Thomas Hart Isaac Hayes Gustav Heningburg Felix Hernandez Chester Higgins, Jr. Tracey Higgins Rainette Holomon Ednah Holt Reggie Hudlin Warrington Hudlin Byron Hurt Deborah Jacobs Mayor Sharpe James, Newark Barry Jenkins James Earl Jones Regina Kelly Skip Kelly Dr. Akil Kokayi Khalfani Jacques Lacombe Jerry LaMothe Eriq LaSalle Malcolm D. Lee Robinne Lee Spike Lee LEON Abbey Lincoln Laura Lomas Shola Lynch Paula J. Massood Michelle Materre Reed R. McCants Matthew Miele Caroline Memnon, Esq. S. Epatha Merkerson Dierdra McDonald Winthrop McGriff Darnell Moore Deborah Morales Luis Moro Joe Morton Jess Mowry
Pratibha Parma Dr. James Mutambirwa Mweze Ngangura Gil Noble Dr. Velile Notshulwana-Mqota Nell Painter Euzhan Palcy Mayor Douglas H. Palmer, Trenton Gordon Parks Kae Thompson Payne William Payne Penwah Brock Peters Miriam Petty, Ph.D. The Honorable Bob Pickett Derrick H. Pitts Jason L. Pollard Clement Alexander Price, Ph.D. Sheryl Lee Ralph Jules Ramsey Dr. Priscella Ramsey Tim Reid Paul Robeson, Jr. Jeppe Ronde Noliwe Rooks Kathe Sandler Zina Saro-Wiwa John Sayles Yesenia Selier Danny Schechter Sham Usman Sharif Bobby Shepard Darien Sills-Evans Aishah Shahidah Simmons Bob Slade Allan Slutsky Dornycya Suggs Percy Sutton Tobias Truvillion Dr. Yvonne Thornton James Van Der Zee Dr. Marta Moreno Vega Susan Vogel Dr. Wyatt Tee Walker Richard Wesley Junius Williams Deborah Willis Giles R. Wright
Newark Black Film Festival Selection Committee
Gloria Hopkins Buck, LCSW Public Relations Consultant & NBFF Chairperson & Charter Member VP, Board of Trustees-Newark Museum
Patricia Faison Marketing Associate & NBFF Coordinator Newark Museum