Sundance 2017

FIRELIGHT MEDIA ANNOUNCES SLATE AT 2017 SUNDANCE FILM FESTIVAL

Events, Panels, And Exhibits Highlight HBCU Multi-Platform Initiative

Yearlong Digital Project Launched To Crowdsource HBCU Experiences

January 20, 2017 (Los Angeles, CA) — Firelight Media will present a series of events and panels at the Sundance Film Festival in conjunction with the world premiere of Stanley Nelson’s documentary, Tell Them We Are Rising: The Story of Black Colleges and Universities. Tell Them We Are Rising is the centerpiece of a yearlong multi-platform effort called HBCU Rising, an online space where HBCU students, alumni, families and faculty are invited to contribute to the documentary and multimedia project by sharing personal photos, videos, and stories capturing their individual HBCU experiences.

“We are proud to come to Sundance Film Festival this year to support an array of projects directed by former Firelight Documentary Lab fellows—Sabaah Folayan and Damon Davis (Whose Streets?), Pete Nicks (The Force), Christine Turner (Hold On)—and the ninth Sundance Film Festival world premiere from our very own Stanley Nelson,” says Firelight Media President, Marcia Smith. “More than just beautiful filmmaking, these films offer nuance and insight into some of the most timely and important issues of our time.”

Firelight Media will present a sneak preview of the HBCU exhibit on Saturday, January 21 at Blackhouse Lab. The event is open to the public and invites audiences to contribute personal photos to the HBCU Digital Yearbook, watch exclusive clips from the film, and listen to StoryCorps audio content from HBCU graduates. Filmmakers Stanley Nelson (Tell Them We Are Rising: The Story of Black Colleges and Universities, Independent Lens), Rob Hardy (The Quad, BET), Anika Noni Rose (The Quad, BET), and Gerard McMurray (Burning Sands, Netflix) will join together on January 21 at 2:30pm at Blackhouse Lodge to discuss the role HBCUs have played in their lives, and why story of HBCUs must be told. The panel will be moderated by Rashad Robinson, Executive Director of Color of Change, and is sponsored by Firelight Media and Color of Change.

“At Firelight our commitment has deepened—not only to the films—but to the movements working to bring about change,” shares Firelight Media Director of Outreach and Engagement, Sonya Childress. “We know the power of storytelling, coupled with innovative strategy, and in partnership with communities and leaders, can fuel social change. We believe in these filmmakers and the potential of their films to feed movements and change the narrative.”

Tell Them We Are Rising: The Story of Black Colleges and Universities premieres at the 2017 Sundance Film Festival on Monday, January 23rd at 11:45am at the Marc Theater. The film examines the impact HBCUs have had on American history, culture, and national identity. Following the premiere of Tell Them We Are Rising, Firelight Media will host the We Gon’ Be Alright Party, a celebration of the achievements of Stanley Nelson, Firelight Documentary Lab Fellows, and the Firelight Media community.

All content submitted to the HBCU Rising website will be curated and shared in the HBCU Rising Digital Yearbook, and during HBCU campus and community events leading up to the film’s broadcast premiere.

Co-produced by ITVS, Tell Them We Are Rising will premiere on the PBS series Independent Lens in 2018.

OFFICIAL POSTER

 

#HBCURising 2017 SUNDANCE FILM FESTIVAL EVENTS

Interactive Exhibit – Public

January 21, 2017, 10am-4pm

The Blackhouse

Tell Them We Are Rising: The Story of Black Colleges and Universities is a 90-minute film by award-winning documentary filmmaker Stanley Nelson that explores the pivotal role HBCUs have played in the ascent of African-Americans and their families – from slavery to the present day. The film is the centerpiece of a yearlong effort called HBCU Rising to examine and celebrate the legacy of HBCUs. Visit the Blackhouse Lab on Saturday, January 21 for a sneak preview of HBCU Rising. You can contribute personal photos to our HBCU Digital Yearbook, watch exclusive clips from Tell Them We Are Rising, and listen to StoryCorps audio content from HBCU graduates.

Panel

Saturday January 21, 2017, 2:30-4pm

The Blackhouse

Viewed as the “original safe spaces” HBCUs have seen a surge in enrollment due to increased racial tension on college campuses. As HBCUs make a comeback, a spate of stories about the HBCU experience will release in 2017.  Join Stanley Nelson (Tell Them We Are Rising: The Story of Black Colleges and Universities, Independent Lens), Rob Hardy (The Quad, BET), Anika Noni Rose (The Quad, BET) and Gerard McMurray (Burning Sands, Netflix) as they discuss the role HBCUs have played in their lives, and why story of HBCUs must be told. Moderated by Rashad Robinson, Executive Director, Color of Change

Sponsored by Firelight Media and Color of Change