Morehouse College On A Roll: Screens Feature Films and Documentaries Later Named As Oscar Contenders

Date Released: February 7, 2017

Janelle Monae Attend ‘I Am Not Your Negro’ Screening

Morehouse College’s Department of Cinema, Television & Emerging Media Studies recently hosted a special screening of the documentary “I Am Not Your Negro,” in an evening that included a special appearance by actress and singer, Janelle Monáe.

The Raoul Peck film, based on an unfinished manuscript by novelist, playright, and poet James Baldwin, examines the lives and sacrifices of civil rights icons Martin Luther King Jr., Malcolm X, and Medgar Evers. The civil rights leaders, friends of Baldwin, were all assassinated in a five-year period between 1963 and 1968.

The film debuted to a standing-room-only crowd at the Morehouse College Bank of America Auditorium. Additional seats had to be brought in to accommodate some of the overflow. 

The screening was followed by a lively panel discussion featuring Ambassador Andrew Young; Dr. Daniel Black, a professor at Clark Atlanta’s Department of African-American Studies; Fahamu Pecou, a renowned artist; and Dr. Francine Allen, a professor with the Morehouse English Department, among others.

The acclaimed film has since been nominated for an Oscar in the Documentary Feature category.

“I Am Not Your Negro” is the fourth film that was either presented for a screening at Morehouse or filmed here to receive an Academy Award nomination. The others are Oscar contenders in the Best Picture category. They are: “Fences,” “Moonlight,” and “Hidden Figures.” 

Actor Denzel Washington, who also came to Morehouse for the screening of “Fences,” was nominated for Best Actor in a Leading Role as was his costar Viola Davis, who was nominated for Best Actress in a Leading Role.

“Moonlight” also earned Oscar buzz for its cast. Mahersala Ali was nominated for Best Actor in a Supporting Role. Cast member Naomie Harris was nominated for Best Actress in a Supporting Role. (The film won the 2017 Golden Globe Award for Best Picture.) 

And in “Hidden Figures,” Oscar-winner Octavia Spencer was nominated for Best Actress in a Supporting Role. The film features scenes from the Morehouse campus.

CTEMPS Director Stephanie Dunn said her department is on a winning streak of selecting high caliber films to show at Morehouse that are later picked as Oscar contenders for their artistry.

“We are working to expose students to the films, the producers, and the actors who are at the top of their craft,” Dr. Dunn said. “Our hope is that we will have Morehouse College students win major awards in film.” 

Spike Lee ‘79 won an honorary Oscar in 2015 for his body of work as a feature and documentary filmmaker. He has won many other awards for his work.

For more information on, “I Am Not Your Negro,” follow the link below:

By D. Aileen Dodd

Last Modified: June 8, 2017, 14:06 PM, by: Synera Shelton

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