Sundance Selects to release THE BLACK POWER MIXTAPE 1967-1975

GATW Guest Writer

by: GATW Guest Writer
February 14th, 2011

THE BLACK POWER MIXTAPE 1967-1975

THE BLACK POWER MIXTAPE 1967-1975 had its world premiere at the 2011 Sundance Film Festival. This week, the film screened in the Panorama section at the Berlinale, the Berlin International Film Festival. It was announced at Berlinale, that Sundance Selects had picked up the North American rights to the documentary.

Directed by Göran Hugo Olsson, THE BLACK POWER MIXTAPE 1967-1975 tells the story of a group of Swedish journalists who travelled to the United States to film burgeoning black power movement in America through archival footage from the period and commentary from the artists and activists involved in the struggle.

In the official press release for the deal, the film was described as follows:

"From 1967 to 1975, fueled by curiosity and naïveté, Swedish journalists traversed the Atlantic Ocean to film the black power movement in America.  THE BLACK POWER MIXTAPE 1967-1975 mobilizes a treasure trove of 16mm material, which languished in a basement for 30 years, into an irresistible mosaic of images, music, and narration to chronicle the movement’s evolution. Mesmerizing footage of Stokely Carmichael, Bobby Seale, Huey P. Newton, Angela Davis, and Eldridge Cleaver, as well as Black Panther activities, are peppered with B-roll footage of black America. These scenes take on a fresh, global angle through the outsider perspective of the Swedish lens. Meanwhile, penetrating commentaries from artists and activists influenced by the struggle—like Harry Belafonte, Sonia Sanchez, Talib Kweli, Erykah Badu, and Professor Robin D. G. Kelley—riff on the range of radical ideas and strategies for liberation. Their insights and the vibrancy of the unearthed footage render the black power movement startlingly immediate and profoundly relevant."

The documentary was produced by Annika Rogell of Story AB and was co-produced by Joslyn Barnes and Danny Glover of Louverture Films and Sveriges Television.

I think it will be interesting to see the Black Power Movement from an outsider's perspective and that this film has an important message. Jonathan Sehring, President of Sundance Selects/IFC Films, said: “This is a remarkable film by Swedish director Göran Hugo Olsson with footage from true outsiders filming outsiders as they fight to make their way into the system. It is riveting and emotional to go back in time to see a major part of our recent history. This is an essential film that we look forward to bringing to a large audience.”

Read the complete press release below.

SUNDANCE SELECTS TAKES NORTH AMERICAN RIGHTS TO GÖRAN HUGO OLSSON’S THE BLACK POWER MIXTAPE 1967-1975

Berlin, GERMANY (February 14, 2011) – Sundance Selects announced today from the 2011 Berlin Film Festival that the company is acquiring North American rights to writer/director Göran Hugo Olsson’s THE BLACK POWER MIXTAPE 1967-1975. The documentary, produced by Annika Rogell of Story AB, made its world premiere at the 2011 Sundance Film Festival and screened this week in the Panorama section at the Berlin Film Festival.  The film was co-produced Joslyn Barnes and Danny Glover of Louverture Films, and Sveriges Television

From 1967 to 1975, fueled by curiosity and naïveté, Swedish journalists traversed the Atlantic Ocean to film the black power movement in America. THE BLACK POWER MIXTAPE 1967-1975 mobilizes a treasure trove of 16mm material, which languished in a basement for 30 years, into an irresistible mosaic of images, music, and narration to chronicle the movement’s evolution. Mesmerizing footage of Stokely Carmichael, Bobby Seale, Huey P. Newton, Angela Davis, and Eldridge Cleaver, as well as Black Panther activities, are peppered with B-roll footage of black America. These scenes take on a fresh, global angle through the outsider perspective of the Swedish lens. Meanwhile, penetrating commentaries from artists and activists influenced by the struggle—like Harry Belafonte, Sonia Sanchez, Talib Kweli, Erykah Badu, and Professor Robin D. G. Kelley—riff on the range of radical ideas and strategies for liberation. Their insights and the vibrancy of the unearthed footage render the black power movement startlingly immediate and profoundly relevant.

Jonathan Sehring, President of Sundance Selects/IFC Films, said: “This is a remarkable film by Swedish director Göran Hugo Olsson with footage from true outsiders filming outsiders as they fight to make their way into the system. It is riveting and emotional to go back in time to see a major part of our recent history. This is an essential film that we look forward to bringing to a large audience.”
“When I started this project, the goal was to reach out and make these remarkable images available to the audience forever! I could think of no better partner to do this with than Sundance Selects. Being from remote Sweden we were lucky to get to work with the very best film team in the U.S.—Joslyn Barnes and Danny Glover at Louverturefilms, and Corey Smyth at Blacksmith Corp. And now Sundance Selects. I’m just happy. We have important subject matter that comes with a responsibility to handle it with love and respect, and that is what happening now,” said Olsson.

The deal for the film was negotiated by Arianna Bocco, Senior Vice President of Acquisitions & Productions for Sundance Selects/IFC Films with Debra Fisher at Cinetic Media on behalf of the filmmakers.

Sundance Selects is a sister division to IFC Films and IFC Midnight, and is owned and operated by Rainbow Media.

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