First heritage film fest to hail 3 Carib legends

Cicely Tyson poses with her Tony award for best actress in a play for “The Trip to Bountiful.”
Photo by Charles Sykes / Invision / Associated Press

Now that the Academy Awards has bestowed Oscars to the voted-best in the film industry, Caribbean Heritage Organization will honor their own during a Salute to Hollywood & Excellence ceremony hailing three Caribbean thespians.

Actors Harry Belafonte, Sidney Poitier and Cicely Tyson are the “Legends of the Caribbean” to be regaled during the California-based organization’s very first film festival honors.

The theme for a gala, black-tie affair, “Legends of the Caribbean” will be hailed during Caribbean Heritage Month, Black Music Month and on a date annually commemorated to mark the June 19, 1865 emancipation of slaves in the United States.

The historical significance of the latter is amplified this year with the 150 year anniversary of freedom.

Slated to be held at Universal City in Los Angeles, California from June 16 to 19, opening night will screen three classic movies that stars each of the honorees — “Guess Who’s Coming To Dinner,” “The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman” and “Islands In The Sun,” (which was partially filmed in Grenada).

According to organizers, prior to the actual awards presentations, four days of workshops and panels are scheduled to provide pertinent pointers on how to traverse the competitive film industry.

Dubbed Caribbean Lens, a retrospective dedicated to the works of Cat Island, Bahamas native Poitier will feature the cinematic hit “To Sir With Love.”

Throughout, daily and topical discussions — coordinated by the Los Angeles Caribbean Entertainment and Media Conference and Film Festival — will combine to provide information and opportunities to meet and greet influential achievers of the industry.

Beginning with a Music & Film Workshop, comprised of managers and record company recruiters (artist and repertoire specialists) representing reputable record labels and management companies, panelists will provide their perspective on the current state of the music industry, the overall role of the manager and discuss artist development. A limited number of participants to this workshop will be afforded 10 minutes to pitch ideas or proposals during a one-on-one session with the panelists.

The following day, Video Games & Animation will be the focus. Leaders in the gaming and animation industries will focus on collaboration and outsourcing of art, animation and software engineering.

During this panel discussion, directors, producers and development executives will provide insider information about the process of pitching a script or project in Hollywood. Once again, a limited amount of registered attendees will have the opportunity for a one-on-one pitch session with the panel.

A Location Vacation panel will introduce location managers and scouts on the intricacies involved with their work. Participants will have an opportunity to showcase particular and creative aspects of each location they perceive relevant for consideration by some of the top location managers and scouts in Hollywood.

Tax Incentives will end the panel discussions with recommendations of how to utilize film tax incentives to attract prospects for movie, television, video and new media production.

On that June 19 date, — also known as Juneteenth Day — a VIP luncheon, hosted by Helen, sister of Maurice Bishop and the Grenada minister of culture will be held at the NoHo Arts District in San Fernando Valley.

During the luncheon a prominent Grenadian will be honored with a Caribbean Heritage award.

Later that evening, a gala salute to the three legendary Caribbean actors will close out the four-day festivities.

For updates and more information, log on to www.caribbeanheritage.org or www.caribbeanlens.com

Catch You On The Inside!

Actor / singer / activist Harry Belafonte, left, the recipient of the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award, is joined onstage by actor Sidney Poitier during Belafonte’s acceptance speech at the 2014 Governors Awards on Saturday, Nov. 8, 2014, in Los Angeles.
Photo by Chris Pizzello / Invision / Associated Press

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