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The Oakland Film Society Presents The 16th Oakland International Film Festival and year round screenings/networking events to promote independent filmmakers and the stories they tell at various venues in the City of Oakland, California - April 3-7 2018

In 1992, I had returned to the Bay Area after finishing college in Atlanta, GA at Morehouse College with a special itch for independent filmmaking.

A year or so prior, my brother, Paul Rigne Roach, had invited me to Harlem, N.Y. for the shooting of the film: New Jack City. He was Mario Van Peeble's Assistant on the film. It was also around this time, that local film students from Clark's film and Broadcasting program used the house I resided in Atlanta, GA  as a film location.

After New Jack City. Paul directed the hit stage play "Tellin' It Like it Tiz". Tellin' It Like It' Tiz" went on a nationwide tour and while on tour, Paul wrote the screenplay "Sydney Byrd, Private Eye. Along with our eldest brother Dr. Mack Roach III, "The Roach Brothers", we called ourselves made the feature film: "Sydney Byrd, Private Eye."

After committing practically all of our funds on making the film, we experienced having scarce resources left to market and distribute the film. For many independent filmmakers, marketing and distributing a film means submitting your film to as many film festivals as possible and hunting down film executives in hopes of meeting them and pitching your film.

We started screening our film with other short films made by local filmmakers that either worked on our production or we ran into along our journey in search of a distributor.

We learned quickly that screening your film in the Bay Area is not cheap. Not only do theaters rent their facilities for a pretty penny, the time put into attempting to reach the right audience adds up quickly. Since these screenings are typically free, trying to connect to right person is like throwing cash out of the empire state building to reach "the right person" standing on the sidewalk with their hand out. 

From the filmmaker perspective, having your film excepted into a film festival means someone else besides you likes your film and will help you promote it. It also means, your film will screen in a theater you did not have to pay for.

From my experiences of screening Sydney Byrd, Private Eye in film festivals, along with other independent filmmakers, being accommodated by individuals/organizations in those cities, the seed was planted to " do something like this in Oakland."

Something like, because Oakland does Oakland and that's what Oakland does! If you don't understand what I mean, its because you have not been to Oakland,California. 

In short, we are proud to be ourselves. Proud to do it, the way, it should be done.

I'm not saying this to boast. I'm saying this because within Oakland, lives one of the most diverse, trend setting, thriving, independent living populations in the United States. Just beyond Oakland's gates, across the bridge, is the city of San Francisco. Traveling North of Oakland, just and an hour or so drive from Oakland is one of the Wine mecca's of the world -  Napa Valley. Traveling South from Oakland, about an hour drive, will take you to one of the technology centers of the world - Silicon Valley.  For these reasons and more, Oakland is a special place, full of special people.

To do it our way, means putting all the above together in the City of Oakland. We add some seasoning, some special sauces, some soul and a lot of love to utilize film to bring people together. The seasoning contains ingredients of various venues, some new and some old. The special sauce is created when musician performances are mixed together with people dancing  with a hint of wine and cayenne pepper.

 

Join us at Holy Names University for APPSI Speaker Series – Oakland International Film Fest Encore Presentation of “Gina’s Journey”-The Search for William Grimes.

Tuesday, September 5, 2017 / 5:45-8:00 PM / 3500 Mountain Boulevard, Oakland, CA 94619

Please join us at Holy Names University of Oakland for the opening program of the Fall 2017 APPSI Speaker Series, presented by the Asia Pacific Peace Studies Institute (APPSI). This program is made possible by generous support from the HNU Education Department.

Oakland International Film Festival Encore Presentation

2017 OIFF Roots Award-Winning Film – Gina’s Journey: The Search for William Grimes

Film screening and panel discussion with film director and executive producer

Gina’s Journey promotional photo
“Narrated by veteran actor and voice artist Keith David, Gina’s Journey: The Search for William Grimes follows the quest of one woman, Regina Mason, in tracing the steps of her ancestor, who traveled along the Underground Railroad to freedom and authored the first fugitive slave narrative in U.S. history. Produced by Your Media 2, the film is based on the Afterword of the authoritative edition of the book, Life of William Grimes, the Runaway Slave, written by Regina Mason and published in 2008 by Oxford University Press. The Afterword, “My Long Road Back to William Grimes” reveals Mason’s 15-year path to authenticate her ancestor’s story and the intense personal sacrifices that made editing and publishing a new edition of the Grimes narrative possible.

In making the film, Director and Producer Sean Durant sought to convey not only Mason’s long road to uncover her past, but also the unimaginable conditions that faced William Grimes as he struggled to free himself from slavery. To this end, Durant chose to use artfully-crafted re-enactments combined with current-day Mason reflecting on her own story and a masterful narration by Keith David. The result is a compelling and provocative documentary film from first time feature filmmaker Durant.” (Source: https://www.ginasjourney.com/about-the-film)

Panelists:

* Sean Durant, director/producer, Gina’s Journey

* Regina Mason, executive producer, Gina’s Journey

* David Roach (moderator), executive director, Oakland Film Society

Program:

5:45-8:00 pm Film Screening & Panel Discussion / 8:00-8:45 pm Reception

Directions/Parking:

Holy Names University (HNU) is located at 3500 Mountain Boulevard, Oakland, CA 94619. This event will be held in the HNU Valley Center for the Performing Arts (VCPA). Click on the following links for driving directions and campus map. (VCPA is marked “D” on the map.) Please note that parking at the VCPA is limited. Additional parking is available in the “Lower Parking Lot” on the north side of campus and also outside the campus gate, along Mountain Boulevard.
Date:
Tuesday, September 5, 2017 – 5:45pm to 8:00pm
Location:
HNU Valley Center for the Performing Arts / 3500 Mountain Blvd, Oakland, CA 94619
Pricing:
FREE for HNU students, staff, and faculty / $10 for general public

 

Special thanks to Chiho Sawada and the he Asia Pacific Peace Studies Institute (APPSI).and HNU's Education Department.

kind regards,

David N. Roach

Co-Founder / Director

The Oakland Film Society
Presenting The 16th Oakland International Film Festival - April 3-7th, 2018

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Tickets

$10 USD
Gina's Journy movie ticket folowed by q and A
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Please join us at Holy Names University of Oakland for the opening program of the Fall 2017 APPSI Speaker Series, presented by the Asia Pacific Peace Studies Institute (APPSI). This program is made possible by generous support from the HNU Education Department.

Oakland International Film Festival Encore Presentation

2017 OIFF Roots Award-Winning Film – Gina’s Journey: The Search for William Grimes

Film screening and panel discussion with film director and executive producer. “Narrated by veteran actor and voice artist Keith David, Gina’s Journey: The Search for William Grimes follows the quest of one woman, Regina Mason, in tracing the steps of her ancestor, who traveled along the Underground Railroad to freedom and authored the first fugitive slave narrative in U.S. history. Produced by Your Media 2, the film is based on the Afterword of the authoritative edition of the book, Life of William Grimes, the Runaway Slave, written by Regina Mason.
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