News Americas, New York, NY, Mon. May 20, 2019: Director Frances-Anne Solomon’s acclaimed feature film HERO inspired by Trinidad and Tobago war hero Ulric Cross will have its U.S premiere at the 26th New York African Film Festival’s (NYAFF) Opening Night at the prestigious Film at Lincoln Center. It takes place on Thursday, May 30 at 6:30pm at the Walter Reade Theater, 165 West 65th Street, NY.
“We are honored to be opening this important festival,” says Solomon. “This is a story that resonates with audiences around the world. From his career in the Air Force, to his time as a lawyer and judge working behind the scenes in the independence movements of Ghana, Cameroon and Tanzania, Ulric’s life blazed a trail that inspires us all.”
HERO headlines NYAFF’s recognition of the 100th anniversary of the first Pan-African Congress with a showcase of films about Pan-Africanism and global game changers. Cross left Trinidad in 1941 to become the RAF’s ’s most decorated West Indian navigator. But his life took a different course when, along with a number of other notable West Indians, he followed the call of history and joined the Pan-African and independence movements sweeping the world in the ’50s and ’60s.
“As we celebrate 50 years of FESPACO, which paralleled the independence movements of Africa, we have to remember that achieving our liberation was integrally tied to the diaspora. In HERO we get a slice of how our diasporan counterparts advocated for the liberation of the Continent,” said Mahen Bonetti, African Film Festival, Inc., Executive Director and NYAFF Founder. “I want to thank Frances-Anne for shedding light on such a pivotal moment in our history.”
Since the HERO World tour began in February, the film has received rave reviews from audiences and critics alike in Toronto, Trinidad and the UK:
“HERO is an electrifying, dramatic motion picture, filled with twists and turns that will thrill audiences across the globe.” – Stephen Weir, Caribbean Camera
“Filmmaker Frances-Anne Solomon …deserves lavish praise for showcasing an historical legend, and for helping to change the negative stereotypical portrayal of people of African descent on the screen.”
HERO boasts an all-star international cast that includes Trinidad and Tobago’s Nicolai Salcedo, in the lead role of Ulric Cross, alongside UK stars Joseph Marcell (Fresh Prince of Bel Air), Fraser James (Resident Evil), Pippa Nixon (John Carter), Canada’s Peter Williams (Stargate SG1), and Ghanaian superstars John Dumelo, Adjetey Anang and Prince David Oseia.
A second screening will take place on June 2nd at 4:15pm at the Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center, 144 West 65th Street. Both screenings will include a Q&A afterward with the director.
The New York African Film Festival is co-presented by Film at Lincoln Center and African Film Festival, Inc., and runs May 30 to June 4; more information at filmlinc.org.
About Film at Lincoln Center
Film at Lincoln Center is dedicated to supporting the arts and elevating the craft of cinema and enriching film culture.
Film at Lincoln Center fulfills its mission through the programming of festivals, series, retrospectives, and new releases; the publication of Film Comment; the presentation of podcasts, talks, and special events; the creation and implementation of Artist Initiatives; and our Film in Education curriculum and screenings. Since its founding in 1969, this nonprofit organization has brought the celebration of American and international film to the world-renowned arts complex Lincoln Center, making the discussion and appreciation of cinema accessible to a broad audience, and ensuring that it remains an essential art form for years to come.
Film at Lincoln Center receives generous, year-round support from The New York Times, Shutterstock, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature. American Airlines is the Official Airline of Film at Lincoln Center. For more information, visit www.filmlinc.org and follow @filmlinc on Twitter and Instagram.
About African Film Festival, Inc.
For 29 years, African Film Festival, Inc. (AFF) has bridged the divide between post-colonial Africa and the American public through the powerful medium of film and video. AFF’s unique place in the international arts community is distinguished not only by leadership in festival management but also by a comprehensive approach to the advocacy of African film and culture. AFF established the New York African Film Festival (NYAFF) in 1993 with Film at Lincoln Center. The New York African Film Festival is presented annually by the African Film Festival, Inc. and Film at Lincoln Center, in association with the Brooklyn Academy of Music. AFF also produces a series of local, national and international programs throughout the year. More information about AFF can be found on the Web at www.africanfilmny.org.
About Frances-Anne Solomon
Frances-Anne Solomon is an award-winning filmmaker, producer, curator and entrepreneur in film, TV, Radio and new media. Following a successful career as a TV Drama Producer and Executive Producer with the BBC in England, she launched the CaribbeanTales Media Group in Canada and Barbados, that now includes production/distribution, and training worldwide. Full bio can be found at www.francesannesolomon.com
About CaribbeanTales Media Group
is a group of media companies that
produces, markets, and exhibits Caribbean-themed films for Regional and
international distribution, including CaribbeanTales Worldwide Distribution,
CaribbeanTales Inc – a registered Charity in Canada. Activities include The
CaribbeanTales International Film Festival, now in its 14th year; the renowned
CaribbeanTales Incubator (CTI) a year-round development and production hub for
Caribbean and Caribbean Diaspora Producers; Caribbeantales-TV a VOD streaming
service for Caribbean films; and CaribbeanTalesFlix, their production arm. More
info at www.caribbeantales.org