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2012 Paul Robeson Award Winners




The Contradictions of Fair Hope
Filmmakers & Directors: S. Epatha Merkerson & Rockell Metcalf
Producer: S. Epatha Merkerson
2012, 67 minutes
This documentary sets the stage in rural Alabama, prior to Emancipation, and traces the development, contributions, struggles and gradual loss of tradition of one of the country's last remaining African-American benevolent societies, known as "The Fair Hope Benevolent Society."

Honorable Mention
All Me: The Life and Times of Winfred Rembert
Filmmakers & Director: Vivian Ducat
Producers: Vivian Ducat and Mark Urman
2011, 78 minutes
With his intensely autobiographical paintings depicting the day-to-day existence of African-Americans in the segregated South, Winfred Rembert has preserved an important, if often disturbing, chapter of American history. His indelible images of toiling in the cotton fields, singing in church, dancing in juke joints, or working on a chain gang are especially powerful, not just because he lived every moment, but because he experienced so much of the injustice and bigotry they show as recently as the 1960s and 1970s.



1st & 4EVER
Filmmaker, Producer & Director: Samein Priester
2011, 16:33 minutes
1st &4EVER is a personal film about becoming a man in the black community.

Honorable Mention
Filmmakers: Aarion Jackson and William Coldwell
Producer: Aarion Jackson
Director: Candace Kelly
2011, 26 minutes
This short documentary highlights the effects of what happens to a family when a father is physically absent from the home. Through the Kates family, we see the breakdown of families, especially in regards to the father-son relationship.


The Destiny of Lesser Animals
Filmmaker & Director: Deron Albright
Producers: Deron Albright, Yao Nunoo, Dede Maitre, Francis Gbormittah
2011, 89 minutes
A dream deferred… a future never dreamed of. The Destiny of Lesser Animals follows Ghanaian police inspector Boniface Koomsin as he embarks upon a crime-laden journey to recover the one thing that can help him realize his ultimate dream – to escape the ghosts of his past and return to America. Infusing the policier genre with West African cinematic traditions and a neo-realist emphasis on everyday life, the film becomes a story of one man’s journey to find his own purpose in the larger post-colonial context of Ghanaian independence.

Honorable Mention
Probable Cause
Filmmaker: Blue Lion Club
Producer: Nikki Simpson
Director: Tabari Sturdivant
2011, 88 minutes
Sometimes you have to look past the evidence to truly understand the crime. Probable Cause is the second feature film from Blue Lion Club Production. This time they take a gritty crime and explore the what, when, why and how of an inexplicable crime.


The Tombs
Filmmaker, Producer & Director: Jerry LaMothe
2011, 29 minutes
A Brooklyn man’s three-day journey through New York’s central booking jail system, infamously known as "the Tombs."

Honorable Mention
Keeper of the Flame
Filmmaker & Director: Brian Nelson
Producers: Rob Williams and Marques Miles 
2011, 30 minutes
The enigmatic Mardi Gras Indian culture serves as a pillar in the community and symbol of strength. When the Big Chief of a prominent Indian tribe dies unexpectedly, leadership changes emerge.


DAR HE: The Lynching of Emmett Till
Filmmaker/Director: Rob Underhill
2012, 70 minutes
One man performs 36 roles in telling the Emmett Till tragedy, which became a lightning rod for moral outrage and social change in the 1950s.


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