North Carolina Black Film Festival goes online

The event kicks off Thurs., Feb. 25

The 17th Annual North Carolina Black Film Festival kicks off tomorrow

WILMINGTON, N.C. (WECT) - The North Carolina Black Film Festival goes online this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The four-day event begins on Feb. 25 and features independent movies from African American filmmakers.

Charlon Turner, who organizes the festival, said the films included range from comedies and features to shorts and documentaries.

Turner said the event partnered with Film Festival Plus, where audiences can watch the films.

“One thing I’m really excited about is that this particular platform allows you to see the films at your convenience, so you don’t have to follow a schedule,” said Turner. “When you’re at a film festival in person there are tons of films available that you want to see and some of them play at the same time. With this particular platform, you’ll be able to watch it at your convenience.”

She said organizers considered canceling the event, but wanted to recognize the hard work of filmmakers.

“This was the festival from last year and we toyed with canceling it but filmmakers work so hard and we had some great films that were submitted and we wanted to be able to give them an opportunity to screen those films and share them with the world,” Turner said.

Still, Turner said she believes the filmmakers will miss the opportunity to network and visit Wilmington.

Turner said she felt it was important to be sure there was a platform for Black filmmakers, even during the pandemic.

“I think having a Black film festival gives filmmakers opportunities that they may not get in other cities and other festivals or other platforms,” she said.

The event also features films from filmmakers who call the Cape Fear home, including Her Happy Place from Wilmington filmmaker, Nakia Hamilton.

Christopher Everett, the filmmaker behind Wilmington on Fire, a documentary about the 1898 Massacre, is the executive producer of Black Baptism, which follows an imprisoned young woman who must pass a series of enigmatic tests or face a violent death as the terrifying situation unlocks a dormant power in this story of courage and redemption.

More information about the event can be found here: http://blackartsalliance.org

And for a complete list of films, click here.

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