Get Ready for a Very Special Journey.

AfroPop has delighted audiences for nine seasons. Season ten’s stories are just as beautifully and poignantly told, and remind us that not enough has changed for people of African descent globally. Black Public Media is committed to continuing to bring to the American public these stories and others that celebrate the art, culture and creativity people of African descent for another 10 years.

Season 10

About the host

Nicholas L. Ashe stars as Micah West in the critically acclaimed OWN series Queen Sugar, directed by Ava DuVernay (Selma) and executive-produced by Oprah Winfrey. His harrowing performance in the current season has resulted in critical praise and attention from industry professionals and fans. Earlier he played Viola Davis’s son in the courtroom drama Custody, which premiered at the 2016 Tribeca Film Festival.

Ashe made his acting debut at age 10 in the role of Young Simba in the national tour of The Lion King. Onstage, he is perhaps best known for his Lincoln Center debut opposite Marin Ireland in Abe Koogler’s world-premiere production of Kill Floor, receiving glowing reviews from the New York Times for his pivotal role. Ashe also played the role of Junior in Manhattan Theatre Club’s critically acclaimed production of Choir Boy (directed by Trip Cullman), reprising the role at the Alliance Theatre in Atlanta and the Geffen Playhouse in Los Angeles.

Ashe is also a talented vocalist, pianist and composer. Under the tutelage of renowned playwright Tarell Alvin McCraney, he has developed original stories and music of his own. In 2015, he created a scholarship for young artists in his hometown of Freeport, Long Island.

Ashe collaborated with Cierra Glaude on a short film titled Last Looks, which had its world premiere at the 2017 Urbanworld Film Festival.

Episodes

Black Panther Woman

By Rachel Perkins Adkins

Premieres on WORLD Channel Monday, January 15, 2018 8 p.m. ET/10 p.m. PT

Black Panther Woman details the journey of Marlene Cummins, a member of the Australian Black Panther Party. Through Marlene’s tale, audiences become privy to the fascinating yet little-known story of the indigenous Australian struggle for equality and how young people in that nation formed a Black Panther Party chapter in the 1970s. Interwoven with her memories of the Party and activism, Marlene also details her own struggle with addiction, the refuge she found in the arts and her own quest to fight for women’s rights within the Black Panther Party.

Awards:

Jury Special Prize Festival du Film Océanien (FIFO) 2015 International Indigenous Award Wairoa Maori Film Festival, 2015

About the Filmmaker:

Rachel Perkins’ Australian Aboriginal heritage has informed her entire filmmaking career. She founded Australia’s premier Indigenous production company, Blackfella Films, in 1992. She has directed four feature films: Jasper Jones, Radiance, One Night the Moon (which received five Australian Film Institute (AFI) Awards), and the musical Bran Nue Dae, which screened at the Sundance, Berlin and Toronto Film Festivals. She received the 2015 Australian Directors Guild (ADG) Award for Best Direction in a TV Drama Series for Redfern Now: Promise Me. Perkins also wrote, directed and co-produced the multiple awardwinning documentary series First Australians (2009).

Filmmaker Chat

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AfroPop Shorts: Lonnie Holley: The Truth of the Dirt

By Marco Williams

Premieres on WORLD Channel Monday, January 22, 2018 8 p.m. ET/10 p.m. PT

Lonnie Holley: The Truth of the Dirt is an intimate portrait of a self-taught African-American visual artist and musical performer from Birmingham, Alabama. After a childhood beating by schoolmasters left him immobilized, Lonnie began creating when his mother gave him “art materials” to keep him busy. Influenced by his grandfather who created things out of found objects, Lonnie saw that he could use any type of material as a source for making beauty in a cruel world. An observed portrait, complimented by an intimate interview with the artist, Lonnie Holley: The Truth of the Dirt documents a man who sees beauty in what others step on, step over, and leave behind.

About the Filmmaker: 

Marco Williams is an award-winning documentary filmmaker and professor of film production. He has been nominated three times for the Sundance Film Festival grand jury prize. For over thirty years, Williams has made films that look at injustice and America, usually through the lens of race. Williams received a B.A. from Harvard University, a Master of Arts degree from UCLA in Afro-American Studies and a Master of Fine Arts also from UCLA in their Producer’s Program. His films include Tell Them We are Rising: The Story of Black Colleges and Universities (co-directed with Stanley Nelson), MLK BLVD: The Concrete Dream, Freedom Summer, The Black Fives, Inside the New Black Panthers and From Harlem to Harvard.

Filmmaker Chat

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AfroPop Shorts: Kojo

By Michael Fequiere

Premieres on WORLD Channel Monday, January 22, 2018 8 p.m. ET/10 p.m. PT

Kojo tells the incredible story of Kojo Odu Roney, a twelve-year-old drumming prodigy. In Michael Fequiere’s short documentary, Kojo speaks candidly on his talent, his tireless work ethic, the current state of jazz music, learning from his father and mentor, jazz saxophonist Antoine Roney, and much more.

About the Filmmaker:

Michael Fequiere is a Brooklyn-based filmmaker who received his BFA from City College of New York in Video Production. His thesis film, Faux Pas (2009), won best directing and best editing at the CCNY student film festival and also screened at the Short Film Corner in Cannes and at the Big Apple Film Festival. Fequiere’s filmography also includes his 2011 sci-fi short and the short documentary Replace Clothes with Paint, a provocative film on Austrian body painter Neil Curtis which screened at the L.E.S. Film Festival.

Filmmaker Chat

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AfroPop Shorts: He Who Dances on Wood

By Jessica Beshir

Premieres on WORLD Channel Monday, January 22, 2018 8 p.m. ET/10 p.m. PT

Every day Fred Nelson carries a weathered board into Prospect Park. He places it on the ground in a tunnel beneath a pedestrian bridge, laces up his tap shoes and begins to dance. The rhythm of his steps reverberates across the curved walls of the tunnel and radiates out into the world. This is Fred’s daily prayer. In He Who Dances on Wood, we come to see that Fred dances to forge a divine connection with the natural world, to absorb the rhythm in all things and to have “a conversation with God.” And in watching him dance, we join him on his daily journey to find the secret joy and beauty of life in an old piece of wood.

Awards:

Best International Documentary Award, Edmonton International Film Festival 2017

About the Filmmaker: 

Jessica Beshir is a Mexican-Ethiopian writer and director. She made her directorial debut with her short film Hairat, which premiered at the 2017 Sundance Film and has won several awards. Her second short film He Who Dances on Wood premiered at the 2017 Hot Docs Film festival and recently directed Heroin, which premiered at the 2017 Tribeca Film festival. She is currently developing her first feature film.

Filmmaker Chat

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Between Two Shores

By Mariette Monpierre

Premieres on WORLD Channel Monday, January 29, 2018 8 p.m. ET/10 p.m. PT

Between 2 Shores presents the stories of two women, two lives tormented, between two shores. Johanna and Cristina, both natives of the Dominican Republic, left their homeland in search of better lives in Guadeloupe. Though they found greater opportunities in the French island, they were forced to leave their children behind. Though they have lived in Guadeloupe for years, both women are caught between the two nations: struggling to raise their younger Guadeloupe-born children in their new homeland while also fighting to bring the children they left behind in the Dominican Republic over to Guadeloupe through the process of family reunification. Through the stories of Johanna and Cristina, Between 2 Shores offers viewers a poignant look at the lengths families will go to stay together and at the daily battles faced by many immigrants.

About the Filmmaker:

Mariette Monpierre began her career as a producer for BBDO New York, producing commercials for companies including Pepsi- Cola, Frito-Lay, Visa and Fed Ex. Her artistic portfolio also includes features films, documentaries, short films, music videos and podcasts. As a filmmaker, her filmography includes Knowledge is Power, a 1998 documentary commissioned by the New York City Health Department to raise HIV/AIDS awareness; the 2002 documentary Sweet Mickey for President, which won Best Documentary at the Reel Sisters Film Festival in New York; and her short film Rendez-Vous, which was nominated for the Djibril Diop Mambety Award in partnership with the Directors Fortnight in Cannes. Monpierre’s first feature length film Elza (Le Bonheur d’Elza) was a New York Times’ Critics Pick and won several awards including the 2012 BAFTA Choice Award and the Paul Robeson Award for Best Film of the Diaspora at FESPACO 2013.

Filmmaker Chat

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Ten Days in Africa

By Regi Allen

Premieres on WORLD Channel Monday, February 5, 2018 8 p.m. ET/10 p.m. PT

Ten Days in Africa is an insightful and humorous look at the filmmaker’s journey to West Africa. Allen, an African-American, travels to three countries—Ghana, Senegal and Côte D’Ivoire—with a group of other African-Americans seeking to learn more about Africa and go beyond the stereotypes about the continent, exploring the differences and similarities between Africans and African-Americans along the way.

About the Director:

Regi Allen is an Emmy® award-winning editor, producer and media design artist, who is currently a senior editor at Discovery Communications. His prior works include Planet Brooklyn, An Acid Jazz Film for PBS’s Reel New York Film Series; he won Best Show Award, from Washington D.C.’s Rosebud Foundation for his work on the video art-poetry documentary Voices Against Violence (1994). His collaboration on Sandy Wilson’s So Many Things To Consider and Jane Wagner’s Girls Like Us, were both selections of the Sundance Film Festival Short Film Series. Girls Like Us won Best Short in 1996. His “art documentary,” tendaysinafrica (2002), has won many awards. Regi has edited and produced various works and specials for MTV, Nickelodeon, ABC, HBO, USA Networks, SyFy, Showtime, TV Land, American Movie Classics (AMC) and Black Entertainment Television (BET). He received an EMMY Award for editing and multi-camera editing for Children’s Television Workshop’s Sesame Street and was nominated for another while at ABC World News Tonight with Peter Jennings/The Century with Peter Jennings.

Filmmaker Chat

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Fatal Assistance

By Raoul Peck

Premieres on WORLD Channel Monday, February 12, 2018 8 p.m. ET/10 p.m. PT

Fatal Assistance is a riveting and insightful documentary by award-winning filmmaker Raoul Peck (Oscar nominee for I Am Not Your Negro) which takes viewers on a two-year journey exploring the challenging, contradictory, and colossal rebuilding efforts in Haiti following the 2010 earthquake. Probing the roles of residents, local and international politicians, international aid organizations, NGOs, and more, Fatal Assistance dives headlong into the complexity of the reconstruction process and the impact of worldwide humanitarian and development aid, which while well-meaning, all too often results in little progress for those most in need. Offering a close examination of the missteps made in Haiti after the earthquake, Fatal Assistanceprovides audiences with a scathing indictment and sobering reality on the global aid policies that failed Haiti in the earthquake’s aftermath.

About the Filmmaker:

Born in Haiti, Raoul Peck grew up in Congo, France, Germany and the United States. His complex body of work includes films The Man by the Shore (Competition Cannes 1993); Lumumba (Director’s Fortnight, Cannes 2000, also bought and aired by HBO). He directed and produced Sometimes in April for HBO (Berlinale 2005); Moloch Tropical (Toronto 2009, Berlin 2010); and Murder in Pacot (Toronto 2014, Berlin 2015). His documentary on American author James Baldwin I Am Not Your Negrowas nominated for the Best Documentary Academy Award in 2017. He served as jury member at the 2012 Cannes Film Festival, is presently chairman of the National French film school La Femis and is the subject of numerous retrospectives worldwide. In 2001, the Human Rights Watch Organization awarded him with the Irene Diamond Lifetime Achievement Award. His latest feature The Young Karl Marx was released in France in September 2017, and will open in the United States in February 2018.

Filmmaker Chat

 

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