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McDonald’s and the American Black Film Festival Challenge Rising Filmmakers to Show Lovin’ through a National Video Competition

Award-winning filmmaker, Malcolm D. Lee (Best Man; Best Man Holiday), partners with McDonald's and the American Black Film Festival (ABFF) for McDonald's "Lovin'" Video Competition (PRNewsFoto/McDonald's USA, LLC)

Award-winning filmmaker, Malcolm D. Lee (Best Man; Best Man Holiday), partners with McDonald’s and the American Black Film Festival (ABFF) for McDonald’s “Lovin'” Video Competition (PRNewsFoto/McDonald’s USA, LLC)

OAK BROOK, IL-  McDonald’s USA and the American Black Film Festival are joining forces to launch the McDonald’s Lovin’ Video Competition. To complement the new “Lovin” campaign, up-and-coming filmmakers are challenged to create one 90-second film that brings to life McDonald’s philosophy that, “A little more lovin’ can change a lot.”

Aspiring filmmakers nationwide are encouraged to enter their best, original submissions by 11:59 p.m. Eastern March 24, 2015, for their chance to win the grand prize and earn accolades from film industry leaders. Three finalists will be selected to attend the 19th annual American Black Film Festival in New York City, June 11 -14 and have an exclusive opportunity to be mentored by critically-acclaimed film director Malcolm D. Lee (Best Man; Best Man Holiday), who will provide the finalists with invaluable film industry tips and advice.

The top three short films will premiere at the highly-anticipated festival and will be judged by a panel of industry experts. Each submission will be critiqued on creativity, implementation of concept and quality. In the end, only one finalist will take home the grand prize — a film equipment package valued at $2,500 and an opportunity to have their film featured on prominent websites, including McDonald’s 365Black.com and other media entities. More information about the competition can be found atwww.abff.com.

“We are excited to partner with McDonald’s USA on this most unique digital video contest,” said Jeff Friday, American Black Film Festival founder and chief executive officer. “The ABFF is committed to supporting emerging artists and providing trailblazing opportunities for them to gain exposure and visibility in the film and television industry.”

“I’m honored to mentor our next generation of aspiring filmmakers through ‘Lovin’ Video Competition’,” said Malcolm D. Lee.  “Many have mentored and guided me along my journey to make an impact in film, and it’s important for all of us to do our part to bring the next generation up.”

McDonald’s newest campaign reignites the spirit of “i’m lovin’ it” and will inspire everything the brand does moving forward. By focusing on the lovin’ people show each other every day, the campaign provides an opportunity to celebrate and bring more lovin’ to customers.

“McDonald’s is excited to embark on this initiative with ABFF and the filmmakers of the future from the communities we serve,” said Kristen Wells, External Communications Manager, McDonald’s USA. “We hope that the idea of sharing love throughout our communities will motivate and inspire the filmmakers as they work tirelessly to make their dreams a reality.”

The Lovin’ Video Competition and ABFF’s vision to promote diversity in the film and television industry align with McDonald’s 365Black platform — an initiative that celebrates the pride, heritage and achievements of African-Americans year round.

McDonald’s encourages those who live out lovin’ in their lives each day to follow @365Black on Twitter and join the conversation using #365LovinFilm. To learn more about the 365Black initiative, visit www.365Black.com.

To learn more about the American Black Film Festival and the Lovin’ Video Competition, visit www.abff.com. Follow @ABFF on Twitter and @AmericanBlackFilmFestival on Instagram.

Single Ladies … {PUT A RING ON IT}

tribe of judah all wedding couple

Agape and Grace – Marriage God’s Way

He looked across the garden. His breath short, palms sweating, mind racing; is this the one? As the sun shines upon her face reflecting the perfecting of beauty she approaches him. They gaze into each other’s eyes, as doves look upon their love, never again to turn their gaze. Then he speaks, “This is now bone of my bone and flesh of my flesh, she shall be called women because she was taken out of a man.” God’s plan for marriage was in scripted in the hearts of Adam and Eve as they displayed the pureness of God’s perfect plan; two hearts becoming one. The holiness of these unions with the approval of God and under an open Heaven, took place on Saturday, February 7 at Shandin Hills Golf Club where they all committed to live their lives God’s way by putting a ring on it, officiated by Minister Trey Sims.

Each couple desired a wedding of their own in order to unite themselves and children together, but couldn’t do on their own, whether it was financial issues, family or fear, the day never came until God spoke to the Visionary of Tribe of Judah World Outreach {Angela Slaughter}, and instructed the ministry to give all the couples a wedding. When the news reached the couples they were speechless, surprised and overwhelmed with less than three months to plan. So the preparation, counseling and planning begun. As the big day quickly approached, some of the original couples decided to wait while others joined in. Even two days before the wedding, one last couple was added. There was music, laughter, tears and lots of love! This was more than a one day celebration it was the beginning of the couple’s marriage and family ministry in the story of “Agape and Grace – Marriage God’s Way!

Westside Story Newspaper would like to congratulate all of the couples.  As we all know true love begins well before the wedding day, and the efforts of marriage and of love continue well beyond the ceremony’s end. A brief moment in time, a beautiful memory and the stroke of the pen are all that is required to create the legal bond of marriage, but it takes a lifetime of love, commitment, and compromise to make marriage durable and every lasting. Today you declared your commitment to each other before family and friends; your yesterdays were the path to this moment. Now may you continue your journey toward a future of togetherness, building each day in strength and unity. May you have happiness, and may you find it in making one another happy. May you always need one another, not to fill emptiness, but to help each other know your fullness. May you want one another, but not out of lack. May you embrace one another, but not encircle one another… Live well – Love fully!

-Lou Coleman

San Bernardino Black History Expo Brings Together Music, Food, & Dance

Photo credit Freddie Washington

Photo credit Freddie Washington

SAN BERNARDINO, CA- On Saturday, February 7, the Southern California Black Chamber of Commerce held yet another successful Black History Expo in downtown San Bernardino. People of the community gathered together for a positive and enlightening outing that was filled with plenty of food, entertainment, and networking. Some of the entertainment for the day included artists from the roster of LUE Productions, city drill teams, drumlines, a performance from the Chamber’s very own Tammy Martin-Ryles and her group of ladies, and a host of other performers and speakers.