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The 1st HIP-HOP FILM FESTIVAL takes place in New York



HIP HOP FILM FESTIVAL 2016 - The Culture News

New York – Revolution Media announces its First Annual Hip-Hop Film Festival (HHFF): 4 Days of Fresh, which will take place at the National Black Theatre located at 2013 5th Avenue in Harlem, NYC from August 3rd – August 6th, 2016.

Sponsored by NetFlix, The New York Daily News, CreditLine1.Com, The Harlem Brewing Company, EG Bowman Insurance Company, The Universal Hip-Hop Museum, Harlem Park To Pak (HP2P), Hotels 4 Hope, Metro PCS, 24/7 Ink Magazine, Black Talk Radio, and Parle’ Magazine, The HHFF is new model in film festivals, showcasing the stories and talents of the Hip-Hop generation. It is the first film festival of its kind, giving the power BACK to the filmmaker by providing guaranteed monetary support to every filmmaker participating in the festival. #PowerToThePeopleThroughFilm

Powered by Revolution Media, Hip-Hop Legend Ralph McDaniels (Video Music Box), media visionary Charlette Capers (MBS Films / WYMS Ent), and Executive Producer Julien Lockhart, the festival will launch the careers of the next batch of independent writers, directors, and actors who are fueled by Hip- Hop.“The Hip-Hop Film Festival NYC is where film meets the narrative of the Hip-Hop generation.

The festival seeks to give a platform to the underserved filmmakers of the culture while providing a different narrative to the general public”, states McDaniels. “The films that were selected for screening will represent the many stories that can be told by the purveyors of the genre worldwide”, states Capers.

The HHFF will highlight Awards and prizes, Best Feature Film, Best Feature Documentary, Best Feature Short, Best Animated Short, The Ralph McDaniels VanGuard Award (best music video), and Audience Choice Award.

Hip-hop is a culture and form of groundbreaking music consisting of self-expression with elements that consist of Graffiti Art, DJing, MC’ing, and Breaking (Dancing).

One of the festival’s highlighted panels is “So You Want to Create a Webseries: The Business Breakdown” featuring Moise Verneau of “Money & Violence” along with Douglas Aparicio; Chaleta Drayton, and Tiffon Dunn of “Project Heat”.

A sneak peek of “Street Struck”, a documentary about the life and career of Hip-Hop Icon, Big L; “King of Newark” directed by Alonzo Herran starring Hip-Hop Artists Maino, AZ, JoJo Simmons, and Vado; and “Daddy Don’t Go” produced by Omar Epps and Malik Yoba are featured film highlights during the festival.


DAY 1 Wednesday, August 3rd The MC

The culture of Hip-Hop is based on Four Elements: Emceeing, Breaking, DeeJaying and Graffiti. Our HHFF 2016 opening night is all about the Emcee as we present our festival goers with stories and movies about and from EmCees from all over the world.


BLOCK 1: 4:00 pm – 6:00 pm

Background Music (Ian Randolph) – A docu-comedy that chronicles a rap hype man’s path into legend. The story follows his success and struggles within the music industry – a story that has never been told

before.. until now.

Black (Nadia Burgess) – A film about the love and admiration South Koreans have for Hip-Hop music and trends while following 2 underground Korean rappers. The World Has No Eyedea (Brandon Crowson) – A feature-length documentary about the life and death of Michael (Eyedea) Larsen, one of the most gifted underground Hip-Hop artists of our time. The documentary tells his epic life story while exploring the many rumors about his mysterious death and untimely demise.

BLOCK 2: 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm

Snuffalafaghost (Artie Brennan) – A comedy film portrayed as a documentary. This short film takes you on a tour of the early years of Hip-Hop through the eyes of SnuffalafaGhost, Hip-Hop’s first stylist. From Run DMC to Kris Kross he dressed everyone who was anyone. changing landscape of Northern Ireland. The world-famous murals and political slogans that have taunted its communities for over 40 years are being slowly transformed by a graffiti revolution.

Keep Pushing (Timour Gregory) – Bronx teenager Billy enlists in the Army on the brink of the first Gulf War. but journalist Taye convinces him to follow his dream of becoming a rapper. Stars Jadon Woodard, Harry Lennix (Batman vs Superman), Brandon Young (The Wire) and rapper Pharoahe Monch. Maono Ya MC Kah: African Hip-Hop, African Struggle (Robby Bresson) – A first-person account by Mc Kah (Samuel Kangethe Ngigi ) on the rise and influence of Hip-Hop culture in Nairobi Kenya from the early 1990s to date. When MC KAH used the last of his savings to open “The MAONO Recording Studios” things drastically went from bad to worse. The very youth and people he had supported were instrumental in the downfall and eventually the closure of “THE MAONO CULTURAL CENTER”.

BLOCK 3: 9:00 pm – 10:30 pm

Big L (Jewlz the Director) *WORLD PREMIERE* – The long-awaited feature documentary from Danger Zone Films, BIG L – Street Struck takes a look at the rise and fall of one of the biggest talents to bless a microphone. Big L’s talent was revered and recognized by the greatest rappers in the industry. Curated by his best friend, Jewlz the director, this documentary takes an intimate look at the life of the slain emcee, from those who knew him and those who loved him.

DAY 2 Thursday, August 4th DJ’S & B-BOYS

The HHFF 2016 Thursday night line-up is all about the DJ and the B-Boys as we present our festival goers with stories and movies about and from DJs and BBoys from all over the world.


BLOCK 1: 12:30 pm – 3:30 pm

Beyond the Block – Untold Story of Filipino Street Dance (Ricardo Carranza) – Spanning fifty years and charting a path across three continents, Ricky Carranza’s BEYOND THE BLOCK is a documentary recounting the history of Hip-Hop in the Philippines.

BLOCK 2: 4:00 pm – 6:00 pm

Break Like You (Afzal / House) – a short character-driven documentary film about 47-year-old Emile Jansen, founding member of Black Noise, South Africa’s oldest Hip-Hop crew. Since the 1980s, Emile has helped shape the conscious Hip-Hop movement in Cape Town. The narrative follows Emile’s journey, as a boy from the ‘so-called’ colored community in the Cape Flats, who found his voice and deeper identity through Hip-Hop. Give It Up for the DJ (Derrick Pidgen) – Four years in the making, Give It Up For The DJ shows the variety of life that comes with being a DJ and takes the audience across the globe, with tour footage from Stateside to Japan, Europe, and beyond. From discussing music scenes in Philadelphia, LA, Miami, Chicago, and New York, to reminiscing about lugging 12 milk crates packed full of vinyl, to DJing a simple BBQ with friends and family. It also explores the less glamorous side of the craft, focusing on what a crowd doesn’t see and how much work a DJ has to put in to make a wave.

BLOCK 3: 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm

H.E.A.T. (Jose Escalera) – A group of artists and educators in the south of Mexico is developing an educational project called “H.E.A.T” which focuses on the disciplines of Hip-Hop. While in the country violence and poverty are growing, young people are getting interested in the art of Hip-Hop as a way to express themselves. The film portrays the activities of the project in Oaxaca, one of the states with the most defective public education system. Bringing workshops to the State Penitentiary and communities on the outskirts of the capital city, H.E.A.T is demonstrating the benefits and the power of Hip-Hop.

The Fridge (Christina Fonthes) – Initially made from a phone recording, The Fridge is a candid exploration of the world of Hip-Hop from a Manchurian point of view. Wave: A True Story In Hip-Hop (Bullock / Wesley) – See how the legendary Tony ‘Mr. Wave’ Wesley went from a kid in the Bronx to an international B-Boy superstar to entrepreneur and activist. This film includes never-before-seen archival pictures and interviews with not only Mr. Wave but with legendary New York City Breakers such as Powerful Pexter, as well as Hip-Hop legends Special K, Melle Mel, and a host of other Hip-Hop icons. Mr. Wave will also discuss his views on grassroots leadership, the new Hip-Hop, and his struggles to become the man he is today.

BLOCK 4: 9:00 pm – 10:30 pm

NG83 When We Were B Boys (Knight / Scott / Derby-Cooper) – Adolescent dreams meet the realities of adulthood as five former breakdancers reflect on their youthful rites of passage through the vibrant UK hip-hop scene of the early 1980s. Then a tragic event gives them an unexpected chance to recapture the past. Previously unseen archive footage shines the light on a forgotten era in British youth culture in this humorous and poignant character-driven documentary.

DAY 3 Friday, August 5th TALES FROM THE HOOD

Friday night, the Hip-Hop Film Festival takes it to the streets with visually stunning and captivating stories of urban life, struggles, and triumphs from the streets. “Street movies” (etc. Juice, Boyz in the Hood, Belly, Menace 2 Society, Higher Learning) are a bonafide genre and cult phenomenon in the Hip-Hop community.

These are movies that explore the gritty, beautiful, and sometimes humorous but complex stories that reflect the social ills of society.


BLOCK 1: 12:30 pm – 3:00 pm

Looking Through the Windows (Cris Thorne) – A dramatic comedic web series about “adulting” Sam and Denise recently tied the knot and have purchased their first house. With their crazy circle of family and friends now just around the corner, perhaps they moved a little too close to home... 360 L.I.F.E. The Series (Deshawn Wright) – 360 Life chronicles the life of corrupt criminal defense attorney Max Monday, his associates, and clients. Max is the self-proclaimed capo dei capi of criminal defense law, his clientele is the who’s who of New York City’s underworld, Getting into Max’s inner circle is the creme de la creme of criminal networking and there is a very high price to pay for it. Although everybody who comes across his path has a unique background, everybody’s story is interwoven. Lift Every Voice (Monet Gray) – The Regents Exams are Mandatory assessment tests for every student who wishes to graduate from a New York State/City High School. This movie sheds light on how a teacher was able to get her students motivated and interested in the exam and their education by incorporating RAP and HIP-HOP lyrics into her lectures! Beautiful (Nicholas Rhule) – Follow the day in the life of a young beautiful woman who is struggling with accepting a life not defined by her outer beauty. ‘Beautiful’ Is about a young beautiful woman who has a hard time facing herself much less other people. Peaceful Action (Terrell Childs) – Lana goes out on a second date with Wes. She likes him but doesn’t think he’s a good match for her, especially when it comes to conflict.

BLOCK 2: 3:30 pm – 5:30 pm

Tunnel Vision (Sara Downey) – A journey of one man hustling on the streets and outmaneuvering some of the biggest criminals in the world, only to find out that his lawyer is the biggest crook of them all. Tunnel Vision” is based on the real-life hustle of Antonio Salvatore Servidio (fictitious name Johnny Russo). Culled from true reports from the FBI, ATF, DEA, and The Department of Justice.

Little Angel (Dashia Imperiale) – When the unspeakable death of a child occurs in the Lower East Side of New York, an entire city searches for answers. An answer that brings a chill up the spine of anyone strong enough to ask the question. Who killed Little Angel? An homage to the Film Noir genre. A true thriller that delves into the pain, revenge, anger, death, and heartbreak, that ultimately leads to insanity.

BLOCK 3: 6:00 pm – 7:30 pm

The Black Fatherhood Project (Jordan Thierry) – First-time filmmaker Jordan Thierry offers context and conversation in this honest exploration of fatherhood in Black America. Through a telling of his own story and interviews with historians, he traces the roots of the fatherless Black home and reveals a history much more complex and profound than is often told. Putting that history into perspective is a dialogue among fathers discussing their experiences, inspirations, and insight on how communities can come together to ensure the power of a father’s love is not lost on America’s Black children.

BLOCK 4a: 7:30 – 10 pm

Black Box Theater The Barre (Terrell Bobbitt) – The Barre. A small wealthy town where crime and drugs run rampant. A mixture of hustlers from the big city collides with each other and the locals, breeding an endless cycle of violence, sex, and murder. There Is a Man in the Woods (Jacob Streilein) – An elementary school teacher struggles to contain a rumor frightening the students in his class. King of Newark (Alonzo Herran) – The King of Newark movie is about a character named Malcolm, an adult black man who was a Mayor’s aide, running for Mayor of the great city of Newark and focusing on raising his pre-teen son. His past is trying to come back to haunt him. Starring: Clifton Powell, Jason Weaver, Miguel Nunez, Omar Gooding, Blu Gem, Jo Jo Simmons, Vado and Maino

BLOCK 4b: 8:00pm-midnight

Temple Theater Brave (Reggie Talley) – A young NY street performer battles against adversity while pursuing his passion over profit. Six 2 Six (Cassandra Riddick) – In 24 hours, Monte Vincent and Damien Jones, two young men who grew up in the gritty streets of Baltimore, cross paths throughout the day until ultimately they come face to face under unfavorable circumstances. An event that can change the course of both of their lives forever. Snitches (Steve Rahaman) In a world with only one rule, the crime boss of Queens, Alphonse Trapani, discovers that there is a snitch in his house who has been helping dirty cops to put the heat on his family, and all the crime families in New York.

BLOCK 5: 10:30 – midnight

Rules & Regulations (Ralph McDaniels) * WORLD PREMIERE * – The conflict of two generations of hustlers in the streets of NYC. OG Eazy comes home from jail after a 15-year bid to find out his block has a young grimey crew with no respect for him or the community. His homie Gee has it under control from dirty cops to disrespectful youth, but YG Dub sets off an all-out war against the old crew. The fallout will be a lesson in rules and regulations that will change their hood and families forever.


6 pm

“Up In Arms: Street Mobile Journalism”

7:30 pm

“So You Want to Create a Webseries: The Business Breakdown”


Moise Verneau of “Money & Violence”

Douglas Aparicio; Chaleta Drayton; and Tiffon Dunn of “Project Heat”

DAY 4 Saturday, August 6th THE CULTURE

On Saturday, the Hip-Hop Film Festival brings to the forefront the films of directors, producers, and teams who grew up in the culture of Hip-Hop...and instead of the microphone, they picked up the camera. Visually entertaining and educational, the closing films are the culmination of four days of freshness.


BLOCK 1: 12:30 pm – 3 pm

Together In Pieces (Walsh / Dryden) – Together in Pieces is a 25-minute documentary on the changing landscape of Northern Ireland. The world-famous murals and political slogans that have taunted its communities for over 40 years are being slowly transformed by a graffiti revolution. Daddy Don’t Go (Emily Abt) – A feature-length documentary that challenges the epidemic of fatherlessness by offering intimate portraits of four racially diverse, economically disadvantaged dads who are defying the odds against them. Alex, Nelson, Roy, and Omar shatter the deadbeat dad stereotype, redefining what it means to be a good father for all men.

BLOCK 2: 2:30 pm – 3:15 pm

The Picture (Sage Love / Suga Ray) The story of a Haitian-born, 22-year-old, Jack (played by Mike Press). Receiving his American Passport in the mail ignites an empowering, life-changing conversation between Jack and his Grandpa (played by Tarikk Mudu) about his ancestral roots in the Haitian Revolution.

Living Like Kings (Benjamin Kaplan) – The birth of Hip-Hop in the 1970s coincided with a surge of interest in chess among Americans, inspired by Bobby Fischer’s landmark victory in the 1972 World Chess Championship. As our great American cities struggled with issues of race and class, a new generation of players enthusiastically competed over the board and a new art form flourished. ‘Living Like Kings’ explores this unlikely collision, making clear that the lessons one can learn from the mic and the chessmen transcend the categories of race, class, faith, and culture. The film documents where and how these two worlds intersect and provides a unique lens through which to see our nation grapple with significant issues

BLOCK 3: 3:30 pm – 6:00 pm

Daddy Duty (Nikki Bates) – an action drama set to music in which a father finds out his daughter’s doll has been stolen and he decides to get it back. Raise: The World Is Our Gym (Rain Bennett) – An underground urban fitness movement risks losing its identity as a social tool as it becomes the fastest-growing international sport. A new hip-hop style of exercise in the parks and playgrounds of New York City caught the eye of youth all over the world through the advent and use of social media. The subsequent global explosion created organizations, leagues, and hundreds of teams performing this so-called ‘street workout’ as a sport. But the Russians and Americans are at it again, as major stylistic differences along with opposing views for the future of the sport, block the path to global unity.

BLOCK 4: 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm

Rise of the Orisha (Nosa Igbinedion) Introducing the next chapter in the first African Superhero franchise. Amina, a young doctor, has her life thrown into turmoil when a politician’s son dies under her supervision. Things get more complicated when she is possessed by the water goddess Yemoja. Now troubled by mystical visions, Amina must find a way to clear her name and save her sanity before it is too late.

New Day Same Time (Tiffani Steljamin) – Strangers with opposing views have a chance encounter that leads to a life-changing moment. Tobacco Burn (Alvaro Valente) – Motivated by the primal instinct to protect, Marcus, a young slave, wants to kill Sherman, the hateful overseer that has been raping Loretta. In an attempt to subvert the slave, this film examines the pathos of oppressed men and highlights the complexities of exercising one's will. Verona (Romeo Brooks) – Verona, a beautiful young woman in antebellum Georgia, is born into a prominent family. Yet, being of mixed race, she is made a slave by her father and is forbidden to love anyone, slave or free. Becoming infatuated with a young slave, Verona is, soon after, forced by her circumstances to come to terms with the futility of her new haunting, uniquely somber parody of the Technicolor melodramas of the 1940s and 1950s. A backward gaze at American slavery is observed through layers of history, popular cinema, culture, and myth, from contemporary race relations back to the antebellum.

BLOCK 5: 7:30 pm – 11:30 pm

Black Box Theater Calling All Mc’s (T. Mitch)– This short documentary follows the journey of two female MCs and three young male MCs who strive to break the mold of what Hip-Hop means today.

Champagne (Melissa Mickens) – Meet M, a 20-something actress in New York City, fed up with having to fit into the industry’s “black girl” box. She has finally reached her breaking point and decides to break convention, sort of, to make her dreams of hitting it big in Hollywood stick. Her only challenge? Making this “rap-star thing” stick.

Lost Tribe of QB (TJ Swan / Bar Shon) – This Historic Documentary film is about the untold story of the evolution of Hip-Hop in the Queen's Bridge housing projects that led to the largest and most successful assembly of musical talent to ever emerge from a six-block radius. Featuring Tragedy Khadafi, Metta World Peace, Nas, Marley Marl, MC Shan, Roxanne Shante, Dimples D, Dr. Bob Lee, The Disco Twins, Grandmaster D, Craig G, DJ Hotday, Greg Nice, Parish Smith, DJ POLO, and many more.

For additional information on the Hip-Hop Film Festival, you may log onto

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