Arts & Culture

Check out the 21st annual Reel Sisters of the Diaspora Film Festival on Oct. 20-21 in Downtown Brooklyn

One of the best things about living in New York City are all of the cultural and art events that you simply can’t get elsewhere. There’s one coming up that you won’t want to miss. The 21st annual Reel Sisters of the Diaspora Film Festival is taking placed from Oct. 20-21, 2018 at the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema in Brooklyn from 1 pm-7 pm; it’s a two-day annual film festival founded by African Voices magazine and Long Island University’s Media Arts Dept., Brooklyn Campus. Established in 1997, Reel Sisters is dedicated to providing opportunities for women of color and gender nonconforming filmmakers to advance their careers in the film industry. This year’s theme is #time4self, which will focus on films “dedicated to self-care, wellness and healing.”

Reel Sisters Founder Carolyn A. Butts stated how monumental this event is, especially right now, “We’re proud to present a fine selection of life-affirming films that capture the beauty of our everyday lives and the art of practicing self-care. Sharing our stories with the world is an act of self-love and healing.”

Screenings include Suitable, a short on a tomboy coming to terms with her sexuality as she chooses a her high school prom outfit; Bodega, a film on rising tensions in Bedford Stuyvesant; The Perfect Sacrifice, a short film dedicated to Emmett Till; Good Girls Don’t, a comedic film about a Filipina-Canadian girl who defies her mother’s warning that she will turn into a boy if she plays basketball.

Panels and talks also include Our Stories. Our Medicine. In Conversation with Ericka Huggins, moderated by award-winning television screenwriter and producer Valerie Woods. Recorded in Oakland, California exclusively for Reel Sisters, this conversation with activist, poet, and educator Ms. Huggins, explores the healing power of telling our truths. Other events include screen director JT Takagi’s She Rhymes Like A Girl on Oct. 20 at 5:03 pm. She Rhymes showcases Spoken Word/Hip Hop artist Toni Blackman.

On Friday, Oct. 12, 6:30 pm, Reel Sisters will present Trailblazer Awards to award-winning filmmakers JT Takagi, the Executive Director of Third World Newsreel, and Terence Nance, creator of HBO’s Random Acts of Flyness, with the Reel Sisters Trailblazer award for their outstanding contributions to the film industry. The festivities will be held at SVA Theater, 333 West 23 Street in Manhattan.

Follow @Reelsisters & @africanvoices on Twitter for schedule updates and news. For tickets, a one-day pass is $20 and a section pass is $12. Awards ceremony tickets are $45 ($35 for 2+ tickets). Students, seniors and group discounts are available. Purchase tickets at the website

Check out one of the film trailers below:

Mariposa Trailer from Candy Guinea on Vimeo.

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