HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » Forums & Groups » Topics » Race & Ethnicity » African American (Group) » Birth of a Nation, Oscars...

Tue Jan 26, 2016, 07:15 AM

Birth of a Nation, Oscars (so white in 2017?) and challenging corporate America

Start Here:
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt4196450/

I follow Sundance on social media and yesterday evening what popped up on Facebook? A backstage view of the opening of Birth of a Nation 2016.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt4196450/


http://deadline.com/2016/01/birth-of-a-nation-premiere-sundance-stunner-nate-parker-1201690343/
‘Birth Of A Nation’ Electrifies Sundance Crowd In World Premiere

Without an honest confrontation, there is no healing.” That’s from Birth Of A Nation director-producer-star Nate Parker today onstage at the Sundance Film Festival. In what I have to say was one of the most emotional experiences I’ve had at a movie theater, Parker world premiered what he called his seven-year “passion project.” His telling of the early 19th century slave revolt led by Nat Turner had audience members crying in their seats and jumping to their feet in a prolonged standing ovation at the film’s conclusion.


Potential buyers for the film streamed out of the lobby mere minutes after the cast had left the stage post-screening. Some worked multiple cell phones (with assistants standing nearby fielding calls of their own) in what appeared to be fevered discussions about the awards-bait film.

Speaking to the packed Eccles Theater crowd with almost the entire cast beside him after the lights came up, Parker said, “I made this movie for one reason only, creating change agents,” adding, “there are still a lot of injustices in our world.”



It was not an easy road for Nate Parker.
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/features/birth-a-nation-slave-revolt-857177

A few days after actor Nate Parker finished shooting the R&B romance Beyond the Lights in late 2013, he met with his agents and told them he would not be acting again — not until he could play American revolutionary Nat Turner.

"I was willing to stick to that — and if it was my lot to never act again, so be it," says Parker, who didn't work for nearly two years, instead spending every minute — and nearly every dime — trying to get his passion project made.

The result is The Birth of a Nation, premiering in Sundance's U.S. Dramatic Competition. Parker, 36, wrote, produced, directed and stars in the drama, playing Turner, a slave who led an 1831 rebellion in Southampton County, Va. He has been writing the script for his version of Turner's story for seven years but has been carrying the story around with him for much longer


Further down at the same link:
Parker, who had written and directed a couple of short films, became determined to write for himself, and, through a fellowship with the Sundance Lab, was connected with mentors such as Walk the Line writer-director James Mangold to help him hone the story he wanted Hollywood to hear. But what he heard instead were all the reasons a movie about Nat Turner wouldn't work: Movies with black leads don't play internationally; a period film with big fight scenes would be too expensive; it was too violent; it wouldn't work without a big box-office star leading it; Turner was too controversial — after all, he was responsible for the deaths of dozens of well-off white landowners.



See the thing is, Turner existed. He's as much a fabric of America as Robert E. Lee. He was here. He was not a work of fiction. He was a 'radical'. He was rebellious. He embodied every single characteristic of the 'Founding Fathers' who fought at Bunker Hill, Ticonderoga, Lexington, Concord, etc. etc.

“They tell us, sir, that we are weak; unable to cope with so formidable an adversary. But when shall we be stronger? Will it be the next week, or the next year? Will it be when we are totally disarmed, and when a British guard shall be stationed in every house? Shall we gather strength by irresolution and inaction? Shall we acquire the means of effectual resistance by lying supinely on our backs and hugging the delusive phantom of hope, until our enemies shall have bound us hand and foot? Sir, we are not weak if we make a proper use of those means which the God of nature hath placed in our power.”
― Patrick Henry

“Give me liberty or give me death."
- Patrick Henry


“Our cruel and unrelenting Enemy leaves us no choice but a brave resistance, or the most abject submission; this is all we can expect - We have therefore to resolve to conquer or die: Our own Country's Honor, all call upon us for a vigorous and manly exertion, and if we now shamefully fail, we shall become infamous to the whole world. Let us therefore rely upon the goodness of the Cause, and the aid of the supreme Being, in whose hands Victory is, to animate and encourage us to great and noble Actions - The Eyes of all our Countrymen are now upon us, and we shall have their blessings, and praises, if happily we are the instruments of saving them from the Tyranny meditated against them. Let us therefore animate and encourage each other, and shew the whole world, that a Freeman contending for Liberty on his own ground is superior to any slavish mercenary on earth.”
― George Washington



I assume everyone in this group is aware of where he got his title from - in case you aren't aware -
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0004972/


And for those who say - wait - there are other more pressing issues that the Corporate America that Hollywood with its huge exports abroad each year represents . . . I say no time is better than now. These are the days where Emmett Till is confused with Tamir Rice. The time is now.

The rest of the world - much like America - better learn to accept that WE are the real America. We are Americans. Our stories and lives and the lives of our ancestors matter. They helped build this country without the rights and HUMAN dignity that white Americans were provided. If those outside of America can't handle it then so be it. We do not have to subjugate our creativity and will to theirs. They don't SURVIVE here. And Mr. Turner - he might not have ultimately 'survived' here - but his rebellion certainly was an integral part of the birth of our nation as we know it today.

I will be going to see this movie - making it a priority when it releases. Based upon the standing ovation and the cell phones being hammered by buyers yesterday afternoon -

I think it's safe to say that the Oscars won't be so white next year - and the nominations won't be for cowering slaves and victimized maids. You know what? It's about god damned time!

Bravo Sundance and Mr. Redford. Your comments last year when you did your round table with Lucas - and your comments a few days ago make sense. Thanks for a safe space to display 'America' beyond the struggles of white men.












17 replies, 2970 views

Reply to this thread

Back to top Alert abuse

Always highlight: 10 newest replies | Replies posted after I mark a forum
Replies to this discussion thread
Arrow 17 replies Author Time Post
Reply Birth of a Nation, Oscars (so white in 2017?) and challenging corporate America (Original post)
JustAnotherGen Jan 2016 OP
wildeyed Jan 2016 #1
JustAnotherGen Jan 2016 #2
Number23 Jan 2016 #3
JustAnotherGen Jan 2016 #5
Quayblue Jan 2016 #4
JustAnotherGen Jan 2016 #6
Kind of Blue May 2016 #15
Starry Messenger Jan 2016 #7
JustAnotherGen Jan 2016 #8
Kind of Blue May 2016 #14
Starry Messenger May 2016 #16
Kind of Blue May 2016 #17
kwassa Jan 2016 #9
JustAnotherGen Jan 2016 #10
JustAnotherGen May 2016 #11
OneGrassRoot May 2016 #12
Kind of Blue May 2016 #13

Response to JustAnotherGen (Original post)

Tue Jan 26, 2016, 10:02 AM

1. I am COMPLETELY on board!

"The rest of the world - much like America - better learn to accept that WE are the real America. We are Americans. Our stories and lives and the lives of our ancestors matter. They helped build this country without the rights and HUMAN dignity that white Americans were provided. If those outside of America can't handle it then so be it. We do not have to subjugate our creativity and will to theirs. They don't SURVIVE here. And Mr. Turner - he might not have ultimately 'survived' here - but his rebellion certainly was an integral part of the birth of our nation as we know it today."

You know some of what I love about America? The music. And our music is Black music, at the root. And the writers, who come in all hues and genders. And our rebellious spirit, which, as you point out, is embodied perfectly by Nat Turner. I used to wonder why I didn't "love" America, and then I realized that I allowed the right to steal it from me. The REAL America is so much richer and more complex than anything they imagine. And now it is mine because I am beginning to be able to see it for real.

And the other point I want to make, THIS is the way we can teach America to love all America. Through narrative entertainment. You know how we argue and argue with others on this site and elsewhere about facts, but never seem to be able to actually communicate? Because our brains are, for the most part, not wired for facts. Changing the narrative through media should be a top priority. Because if that narrative changes, then we can change hearts and will make political gain much faster. Because once you have the hearts, THEN the facts start to matter. And nothing the pols can do about it either This is why dictators try so hard to control media. But we still have that tool here.

When does it hit national release? Maybe I can get Drinking Liberally or some other group to do it as a meetup

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to wildeyed (Reply #1)

Tue Jan 26, 2016, 10:28 AM

2. We won't know until the bidding war ends

Supposedly it was a feeding frenzy as soon as the lights went up.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to JustAnotherGen (Original post)

Tue Jan 26, 2016, 06:04 PM

3. This is great. Cannot wait to see it

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Number23 (Reply #3)

Tue Jan 26, 2016, 07:10 PM

5. Hearing/Seeing him speak yesterday

Was such a treat! Sundance went live for a little bit . . . I've got a feeling Redford is impressed.

And when you look at the movies in competition - Sundance brought their A Game. Black mem, black women, Asians etc etc

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to JustAnotherGen (Original post)

Tue Jan 26, 2016, 06:13 PM

4. just got the chills reading this.

Last edited Tue Jan 26, 2016, 07:58 PM - Edit history (2)

Thank for your beautiful synopsis. I am looking forward to seeing this.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Quayblue (Reply #4)

Tue Jan 26, 2016, 07:11 PM

6. Thanks you!

He's an inspiration to me.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Quayblue (Reply #4)

Thu May 5, 2016, 08:24 AM

15. Just read your response and the word "chills"

and just saw the trailer and that's exactly how I felt.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to JustAnotherGen (Original post)

Tue Jan 26, 2016, 08:59 PM

7. Can't wait to see this.

I went looking for a trailer for it yesterday, but hadn't thought that it not being with a studio yet meant that there wasn't one yet.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Starry Messenger (Reply #7)

Tue Jan 26, 2016, 09:11 PM

8. None yet

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Starry Messenger (Reply #7)

Thu May 5, 2016, 08:23 AM

14. Here you go, Starry. It gives me the chills.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Kind of Blue (Reply #14)

Thu May 5, 2016, 08:37 AM

16. OMG!

That was intense--can't wait to see the film!!

I can't find the excited Kermit gif, so imagine that here!

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Starry Messenger (Reply #16)

Thu May 5, 2016, 08:44 AM

17. LOL!! Is it this one?

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to JustAnotherGen (Original post)

Tue Jan 26, 2016, 10:26 PM

9. D.W. Griffith

He is a problem.

Singlehandedly he invented much of the vocabulary of motion pictures. He was also a stone racist who created the original "Birth of a Nation" celebrating the rise of Klan like groups in this film.

Another great film technique innovator was Leni Reifenstahl, who worked for Hitler. Such is film history
.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to kwassa (Reply #9)

Wed Jan 27, 2016, 04:05 AM

10. Art and History of Film

Both were shown when I was at University. There were only 3 blacks people including me in the class.

As we sat afterwards and expressed - So THAT'S why!!!!

My peers (good people) were shocked and visibly upset by what they had just seen. Many I've kept in touch with are still "awoke".

Triumph of The Will - I was more amazed at how apt she was at playing her part in propaganda with the imagery.


Birth of A Nation though? That's America's problem to solve.

So glad Nate chose to fix it while spitting in Griffith's eye.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to JustAnotherGen (Original post)

Tue May 3, 2016, 05:40 PM

11. Kick

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to JustAnotherGen (Original post)

Wed May 4, 2016, 07:07 AM

12. K&R -- really excited about this! n/t

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to JustAnotherGen (Original post)

Thu May 5, 2016, 07:18 AM

13. Imagery is everything.

Looking forward to seeing this!

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink

Reply to this thread