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MF GALAXY

MF GALAXY is a weekly podcast powered by four mighty engines: * Writers on writing: the craft and the business * Pop culture including TV, movies, graphic novels, and more * Progressive politics, activism, and social enterprise * Africentric change-makers, histories, cultures, art, and more! Mixing brand-new interviews with classic conversations (from my archive of 23 years in broadcasting) with famous and dynamic figures in the arts, Hollywood, and politics, MF GALAXY will take you to places you've never been before, and deliver fresh insights on the places you've been.
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Now displaying: Category: director - film and television
Jul 17, 2015

Brown Girl in the Ring is Nalo Hopkinson’s 1998 breakthrough novel that revitalised Africentric science fiction and fantasy. It’s the story of Ti-Jeanne, a medic and traditional healer in a near-future failed state Toronto. Ti-Jeanne can see through time, and she needs that power to survive the criminal despotism of Rudy, who runs the ruined city from his castle in the sky, the top of the CN Tower.

Ti-Jeanne comes to understand the source of her vision, as embodied in what some Caribbean people call Carnival Spirits, but are actually the gods of the Ilé Ifé religion of the Yoruba kingdom sprawling Nigeria, Togo, and Benin. Those deities dwell across the Western Hemisphere in the religions of Santeria in Cuba, Candomblé and Umbanda in Brazil, and Voudou in Haiti. That family of faiths encompasses 50 million adherents, making it larger than the combined Sikh, Jewish, and Bahá’í populations of the world.

Brown Girl in the Ring won the Warner Aspect First Novel Contest and the Locus Award for Best First Novel, and it won Hopkinson the 1999 John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer.

Now Brown Girl in the Ring is coming to the screen in the form of Brown Girl in the Ring: The Prequel. That’s the indie film currently in pre-production as helmed by writer, director, and actor Sharon Lewis. Lewis may be best known to Canadians as host of CBC Newsworld’s Counter Spin, and as the mysterious DJ in Clement Virgo’s film Rude. She’s directed numerous episodes of television and the feature films Ritch, Chains, and Income Property.

But for Brown Girl in the Ring: The Prequel to get produced, it still needs money, and that’s why Lewis has turned to crowd-funding. This podcast goes live on Friday, July 17 2015. You have until tomorrow to donate through Indie Gogo. To get this movie made, visit http://browngirlinthering.ca.

In this episode, Sharon Lewis talks about her plans for the prequel she’s written and that she’ll direct, and also:

  • Hollywood’s continual neglect of coloured actors who, of course, represent the vast majority of the human race
  • Why she cares about science fiction and how she came to love it
  • The appeal of post-apocalyptic fiction, especially for coloured people
  • Sharon Lewis’s ambitious plans for expanding the Brown Girl in the Ring universe in present and future venues and media including television and video games
  • The aesthetic strategy for making movies on a micro budget, and
  • The amazing prizes you can get for supporting the crowd-funding campaign for the feature film

Sharon Lewis spoke with me by Skype from her home in Toronto on July 14, 2015. You’ll hear some noise throughout our conversation which is either someone cleaning or cats using a litter box.

Along the way we discuss the Tumblr account Every Single Word which is a web series featuring Hollywood movies edited down to only the lines spoken by coloured actors. The result is 2-hour films shortened to two minutes, or twenty seconds, or sometimes zero seconds.

 

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Mar 3, 2015

Palestinian director Rashid Masharawi is a maverick filmmaker of documentaries and features presenting the heartbeat of a national liberation struggle and a people’s path to democracy.

Born in 1962 in Ash-Shati refugee camp in Gaza, Rashid Masharawi is the director of several documentaries and fiction films, including Love Season, Makloubeh, Haifa, Behind the Walls, Tension, Rabab, and Curfew.

He is also the winner of many international prizes, including the UNESCO Award at the 1996 Cannes Film Festival. That year, Masharawi founded the Cinema Production Centre in Ramallah, West Bank, which aims to improve and develop the Palestinian movie industry by encouraging and training young Palestinian movie-makers. An innovative artist, Masharawi created the Mobile Cinema which has allowed thousands of children to enjoy local and international films.

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For more information on Rashid Masharawi, visit mfgalaxy.org

Feb 16, 2015

Film and television director Ernest Dickerson is best known for feature films such as Juice, which he also wrote, and which launched the acting career of Tupac Shakur; Surviving the Game, Tales from the Crypt: Demon Knight, Bulletproof, Bones, and Never Die Alone.

In addition to having directed eleven episodes of the smash hit The Walking Dead, Dickerson has helmed episodes of Sleepy Hollow, Dexter, Stargate Universe, The Vampire Diaries, The Wire, Heroes, andThe L Word, among many others.

Dickerson rose to fame initially as a cinematographer and is widely regarded as one of the best ever, especially for his work on features including The Brother from Another Planet, Krush Groove, She's Gotta Have It, Eddie Murphy: Raw, School Daze, Do the Right Thing, Mo’ Better Blues, Jungle Fever, andMalcolm X.

In this episode of MF GALAXY, part 2 of our conversation, Dickerson explains:

  • Why he regards the abrupt character shift of Michonne on The Walking Dead as a completely organic arc
  • The future of The Walking Dead and the new Walking Dead spin-off series
  • What Dickerson calls “the poetry of horror” and
  • But he begins by discussing his own work as one of the leading directors of American horror, and what he brings to the art.

 

 

 

FOR MORE INFORMATION ABOUT ERNEST DICKERSON

 

Internet Movie Database

 

Wikipedia

 

Official Facebook page

 

The Walking Dead Wiki

 

“Horror’s scariest trend is the nonexistent black filmmaker”

 

 

 

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https://itunes.apple.com/ca/podcast/mf-galaxy/id955702087

 

This episode of MF GALAXY is brought to you by BOB THE ANGRY FLOWER. It’s a comic strip about friendship, egomania, cosmology, and a really angry flower named Bob.

Joss Whedon, creator of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and director of The Avengers says about Bob, “It’s intensely funny. I’ve been laughing like a supervillain for days.”

To get Bob the Angry Flower any of the great collected editions or great Bob swag, visit AngryFlower.com.

 

 

 

 

Feb 9, 2015

Film and television director Ernest Dickerson initially achieved fame as a celebrated cinematographer, photographing feature films including The Brother from Another Planet, Krush Groove, She's Gotta Have It, Eddie Murphy: Raw, School Daze, Do the Right Thing, Mo’ Better Blues, Jungle Fever, and Malcolm X.

In 1992, Dickerson made the jump to directing his own feature films, including Juice, which he also wrote, and which launched the acting career of Tupac Shakur; Surviving the Game with Ice-T, Rutger Hauer, and F. Murray Abraham, Tales from the Crypt: Demon Knight with Jada Pinkett and Billy Zane, Bulletproof with Damon Wayans and Adam Sandler, Bones, with Pam Grier and Snoop Dogg, and Never Die Alone with DMX and David Arquette.

In addition to having directed eleven episodes of the smash hit The Walking Dead, Dickerson has helmed episodes of Under the Dome, Revolution, Treme, Sleepy Hollow, Dexter, Low Winter Sun, Stargate Universe, The Vampire Diaries, Law & Order, Medium, The Wire, Weeds, ER, Heroes, The L Word, and Third Watch, among many others.

In part one of our conversation, Dickerson discusses

 

  • How Hollywood could be spending its money more wisely to innovate more profitably
  • Why it’s easier than ever to make a feature film
  • His top-secret new movie—his first since 2004’s Never Die Alone
  • The booming Caribbean filmmaking industry
  • Age barriers in Hollywood directing
  • How to get ahead as a Hollywood director, and
  • The outrageous pretext that a director gave for racially profiling him out of a job.

 

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