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‘Love Jacked’ Holds as Pan African Film Festival’s Opening Night Selection

LOS ANGELES, CA- The 26th Annual Pan African Film & Arts Festival (PAFF) announced two exciting programming shifts this week, the addition of The Forgiven (Saban Films) as their new closing night selection, and the launch of their new #Talk4Reel panel series! Both moves are the perfect additions to an already must-see/must-do lineup of films, discussions, experiences and more!

“Our marquee film slate now stands anchored with the perfect beginning, middle and end,” shares PAFF  Director of Programming,  Asantewa Olatunji. ” Love Jacked” remains as our opening night, while The Forgiven gets added to closeout our festival experience. Nestled in-between is our centerpiece, which, this year, is a private screening event of 2018’s most anticipated film! Definitely not one to miss!” 

All marquee films will feature a star-studded red carpet, a full screening, an informative Q&A with filmmakers and talent, and a happening after-party.



(World Premiere – 2017/Canada/South Africa/US)

Directed By: Alfons Adetuyi

Date: Thursday, February 8

Time: 6PM Red Carpet | 7PM Screening

A warm family comedy centered around Maya, a headstrong 28-year-old with artistic ambitions and her father Ed, who wants a dutiful daughter to run the family store. Ed is shocked when Maya, asserting her independence, decides to travel to Africa for inspiration and returns with a fiancé. Stars Amber Stevens-West, Shamier Anderson, Lyriq Bent, Keith David, Mike Epps, Marla Gibbs, Angela Gibbs, Demetrius Grosse and Nicole Lyn. Cast members will be present.




Date: Wednesday, February 14

PAFF will host a private screening of 2018’s most anticipated film for PAFF founders, sponsors, partners, friends and esteemed influencers. Stay tuned to for more details!


(US Premiere – 2017/South Africa/UK)

Directed By: Roland Joffé

Date: Sunday, February 18

Time:  5:45PM Red Carpet | 6:45PM Screening 

Academy Award® winner* Forest Whitaker and Eric Bana deliver riveting performances in this tense thriller based on real events. When Archbishop Desmond Tutu (Whitaker) is appointed to head a nationwide investigation, he’s summoned to a maximum-security prison by a notorious murderer seeking clemency (Bana). Inside the brutal prison walls, Tutu is drawn into a dangerous, life-changing battle with the cunning criminal in this captivating film from Oscar® nominated director** Roland Joffé. 


Behind the Movement 


Presented by  TVOne

Directed By: Aric Avelino

Date: Friday, February 9

Time: 7PM Red Carpet | 8PM Screening

Behind the Movement is a unique and fast-paced retelling of how Rosa Parks’ refusal to give up her seat launched the history-making Montgomery Bus Boycott. The film will reveal the untold story of how a group of everyday people decided this incident was the right time to take a stand for their civil rights and demand equal treatment.

King of the Stage: The Woodie King, Jr. Story

(World Premiere – US/Doc) 

Directed By: Juney Smith

Date:  Saturday, February 10

Time:  6PM Red Carpet | 7:15PM Screening | 9PM Lifetime Achievement Presentation

Woodie King, Jr. is an African-American director and producer of stage and screen, as well as the founding director of the New Federal Theater in New York City. The Pan African Film & Arts Festival will present him with their coveted Lifetime Achievement Award.

Nothing Like Thanksgiving 

(World Premiere – US/Narr)

Directed By: Mark Harris

Date: Saturday, February 17

Time: 7:15PM Red Carpet | 8PM Screening

Having cancer and six months to live, sends Clayton Rockwell (William L. Johnson) a successful businessman, devoted husband and father on a journey to do the unthinkable. Clayton finds a replacement Wesley Madison (Richard Gallion) and grooms him to exactness to take over his business and family; all the while, Kenneth Swain (Darrin Henson) is working to take over his company. 

*Dates and times are subject to change. For an exhaustive list of screening events and experiences, click here:



The Pan African Film & Arts Festival has always been more than just movie screenings. It also serves as a platform to amplify the voices of industry powerhouses, community influencers, sports figures, cultural icons, thought leaders and disruptors who seek to educate, inspire and empower those who desire personal and professional elevation.

With that in mind, PAFF has officially launched its new #Talk4Reel panel series that makes necessary conversations happen… and when these conversations happen, you definitely want to be in the building! 


Nate Parker Foundation Film Premiere Event

Sat, Feb.10 at 2:00pm-4:00pm

Through cinematic arts, the Nate Parker Foundation empowers young voices of African descent to advance social justice and revolutionize culture. Two films will be screened, #Hashtag and Baggage, followed by a discussion led by Nate Parker.

TV One: Social Justice Screenings and Community Forum

Sat, Feb.10 at 5:00pm

TV One will be screening two short films, Evidence of Innocence and Two Sides, followed by an intriguing panel discussion.

UMC Presents

Sat, Feb.10 at 8:00pm

A showcase of UMC original series featuring episodes and discussions with talent and content producers for four new shows.

Seed & Spark

Sun, Feb. 11 at 1:30pm

Join Seed & Spark founder, Emily Best, for a discussion on the future of filmmaking and distribution. Seed & Spark is an innovative new streaming service changing the way films are financed and distributed — equal parts streaming network and crowd-funding platform.  Screening films: Kingsley’s Crossing, Across the Track and Matter of Black.

The Quad – Presented by BET

Sun, Feb. 11 at 4:00pm

Exclusive screening of an upcoming episode BET’s hit series followed by a discussion with the cast and crew.

Black Studio Executives Talk

Thu, Feb. 15 at 7:15pm

The gates of Hollywood finally appear open to more diversity in its business suites as well as its content. Black studio executives participate in an informative discussion on green-lighting, producing and distributing Black content in the digital age. Moderator: Effie T. Brown (Producer); Confirmed Panelist: Moira Griffin (Fox) and more to be announced.

Sports and Activism Panel – Presented By NAMIC

Thu, Feb. 15 at 6:30pm – 8:30pm

Panelist: Marc Spears (SR. NBA Writer, The Undefeated), Galen Gordon (VP, Talent Management, NFL Network), Ramona Shelburne (Sr. Writer, ESPN.com) and LZ Granderson (Sr. Writer at ESPN and ABC Contributor).

Canal Street 

Fri, Feb. 16 at 7:00pm

A modern-day thriller telling the story of a teen, Kholi Styles, trying to get by in an unwelcoming new world. After the mysterious death of a classmate, all eyes fall on Kholi, and it’s up to his father, Jackie Styles, an up-and-coming lawyer from the slums of Chicago, to defend his son in court and battle an outraged public before time runs out. Jackie fights to keep his faith and prove his son is not the monster the world has made him out to be. Screening extended clips followed by discussion with director, cast and crew.

Talk4Reel: Secret Event

Sat, Feb.17 at 3:00pm

Extended movie trailer of a highly anticipated film followed by a discussion with the director, cast and crew. This is one major motion picture exclusive you won’t want to miss!

The Chi – Presented by Showtime

Sat, Feb.17 at 6:00pm

Exclusive screening of an upcoming episode of the SHOWTIME® Original Drama Series, THE CHI, from Emmy® winner Lena Waithe and Academy Award® winner Common. 

TRAFFIK – Presented by Codeblack Films

Sat, Feb. 17 at 9:00pm

Screening select scenes of the upcoming suspense thriller movie, TRAFFIK followed by a discussion with special guests. Directed by Deon Taylor and starring Paula Patton, Omar Epps and Laz Alonso.

Black Lightning

Mon, Feb. 19 at 6:50pm

Screening followed by discussion with talent and above the line crew on the hot new CW hit series. 

The 26th Annual Pan African Film & Arts Festival will take place  Thursday, February 8 through Monday, February 19  at the Cinemark Rave 15 Theatres/Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza   (3650 Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd)  in Los Angeles, California.

To view the full schedule and complete lineups of PAFF Institute, StudentFest, Children’s Fest, ARTFest, PAFF Spoken Word, PAFF LOL and Senior Connections, click here: https://www.paff.org/pdfs/2018/Screening_Schedule-2018-2.pdf

For more details, ticket information and group sales, log on to  www.PAFF.org !

The Importance of Remembering and Being Reminded of Truth Black History!”

Lou Coleman-Yeboah

Lou Coleman-Yeboah

By Lou Coleman-Yeboah

Yes, we need to remember the importance of what we believe. We need to be stirred up, and gripped by the reality of it. For we should never, no never! Forget the toils and dangers. We should always cherish them and tell the history of our suffering in the cause of freedom. For if we have no memory, we are adrift because memory anchors us to the past, interprets the present, and charts a course for the future. And so, being reminded of the truth is critical. Don’t let the deceitfulness choke your life so as to forget where you came from. Remember what you know. Remember the day we came out of Egypt. [Matthew 13:22]. It’s in the Word [Deuteronomy Chapter 8]. Moses was having a little talk with the Israelites, they were getting ready to come up, out of 40 years of being in the wilderness, yeah, 40 years of trials, tribulations, and hardships and they were getting ready, to enter the blessed land of Canaan, but before it was time to go, God wanted them to be reminded of a few things, Moses says, first of all, that thou shall remember, the long way that God has bought thee, remember, where you came from, and he says that it was to test thee, to humble thee, to prove what was in thine heart, whether thou would keep thy commandments or not, as God’s chosen people. We are to remember…lest we become tempted to return back to our old way of life. You see, every time Israel forgot what Egypt was really like, they got the itch to go back. For this reason God asked them to have an annual event to “remember the day they came out of Egypt!  The importance of remembering and being reminded of truth – BLACK HISTORY! 

Without remembering the past we have no future, and present comes meaningless. Past victories gives us hope for the future when we need it in the present! Don’t forget to Remember! You see, the Bible commands that one generation should praise the Lord’s works to another [Psalm 145:4] The Bible commands that fathers should teach the history of Israel and the wonderful works of God to the children, so that future generations would know God’s acts in history, and “set their hope in God, and not forget the works of God” [Psalm 78:1-70]. The Bible commands believers to “Remember the days of old” and what took place in previous generations, so that it might inform our current realities [ Deuteronomy 32:7]. This generation and future generations need to understand what God has done in previous generations to deliver His people from darkness and bring them into the light. The Christian slaves understood that they were grafted into the family of Abraham and they made Israel’s story, their story. How did the slaves endure, overcome, and find hope while being in physical bondage for over 200 years? They learned the story of Israel having been delivered from Egyptian slavery. They heard sermons based on the story. They originated songs based on the story. Don’t forget to remember – BLACK HISTORY!

Poetry Corner: Black History

By Evan Wheeler, Contributor of Purposely Awakened

My enemies acting friendly distorting my past,

We know history needed generations of great Black men.

Stop portraying this illusion that won’t last,

Years of lies and stripping origins from our ken.

You are not without sin but the first stone was cast,

Eyes were blinded to your trash but that was then.

I woke up putting your fallacies on blast,

I refuse to lose and remain sleep with you pigs in this American pen.