Women’s History Month Film Festival Planned At Rutgers – Newark

NEWARK — “Transformations” is the theme of the fourth annual Women In Media-Newark (WIM-N) film festival which will be held Thursday-Saturday, March 7 – 9, at the Paul Robeson Student Center at Rutgers-Newark, 350 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard, Newark. The film screenings, offered in recognition of Women’s History Month, are free and open to the public.

“This festival presents an amazing international array of independent films that serve to celebrate the indomitable spirit of women,” says festival founder Pamela Morgan.  “We are pleased this year to introduce the winner of our Cell Phone Cinema Contest A’layeah Joisanne and her winning film Listen To Me on Saturday, March 9.  We will also continue our tradition of celebrating the accomplishments of illustrious women in the community on each day of the festival.”

Hair care guru Jane Carter will be honored on Thursday, March 7 as well as a dedication to visionary filmmaker and author Julie Dash. Director of East Orange Public Library Carolyn Ryan Reed will be honored on Friday, March 8; and Emmy award-winning journalist Sandra King, and Mother of the Matrix and Terminator Sophia Stewart will be honored on Saturday, March 9.  Festival activities will also include interviews with filmmakers, panel discussions, vendors and a silent auction.

Featured films include:

  • New York Times critic’s pick Elza, which is the first feature film by a woman from Guadelope;
  • Sweet Dreams looks at the power of drumming and ice cream after the Rwandan genocide; and
  • Dear Mandela looks at youthful social activism in post-apartheid South Africa (New York Times reviewed)

Film shorts include:

  • Listen to Me is the Cell Phone Cinema Contest winner by 17 year old, Montclair High School senior A’layeah Joisanne, who is the writer, director and lead actress in this  film short.
  • Catching Babies is about midwifery in the Mexican population in Texas by a Somolian filmmaker who lives in the US;
  • Solace examines youthful perceptions;
  • Stalled Quotes taken from the stalls in women’s bathrooms across North America made into a script;
  • White Sugar in a Black Pot Examines hard decisions made for a family’s future;
  • Do Pahar, a wonderful drama by famed Indian actress Sharifa Roy and her daughter Shazia Shrivastava; and
  • Sista’ Soldier examines the history of African American women in the US military.

Women In Media – Newark is an organization that advocates for and educates the public about issues affecting the lives of women using film, video and new media as our platform. Merging culture and academia, we rally behind our sisters who courageously struggle to assume leadership roles in the film industry with their conscious effort to present a balanced image of women, dispelling the stereotypes and changing public perception of their sisters worldwide.

Co-sponsors of the Women In Media-Newark film series include the Office of University and Community Partnerships, Rutgers – Newark campus, Rutgers Center for Global Advancement and International Affairs; Center for African Studies, Rutgers University.

The film festival is free and open to the public although donations are welcome. For more information, visit  www.wim-n.com

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