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American Black Film Festival: ‘The Blackening,’ ‘Donyale Luna: Supermodel,’ ‘Time of Essence,’ ‘I’m A Virgo’ Join Lineup (Exclusive)



The American Black Film Festival has unveiled its lineup of spotlight screenings and new world premieres.

The festival, set to run in Miami Beach from June 14 to 18, has booked a first look for HBO Documentary Film’s Donyale Luna: Supermodel, a film about the pioneering Black supermodel Donyale Luna. Also headed to ABFF for a screening is NBC’s Found drama, created by Nkechi Okoro Carroll and starring Shanola Hampton and Mark-Paul Gosselaar, and BET+’s Average Joe, a darkly comedic drama series that stars Deon Cole and will also have a world premiere.

And there’s screenings booked into Miami Beach for Liongate’s The Blackening, directed by Tim Story, starring Grace Byers and Jermaine Fowler and which had a world premiere at the Toronto Film Festival; and a centerpiece screening for Netflix’s The Perfect Finddirected by ABFF alum Numa Perrier and starring Gabrielle Union and Keith Powers.

Warner Bros. Pictures will bring a sneak peek at a new take on The Color Purple, from director Blitz Bazawule and starring Fantasia Taylor, Taraji P. Henson and Danielle Brooks, ahead of a Dec. 25 releases.

The ABFF lineup also added Prime Video’s upcoming series I’m A Virgocreated, written, and directed by Boots Riley; Time of Essence, a five-part docuseries from OWN that celebrates 50 years of Essence Magazine; and A&E’s Exposing Parchmanan investigative documentary about reforming the Mississippi prison system and featuring Shawn “Jay-Z” Carter and Mario “Yo Gotti” Mims.

ABFF plans a virtual festival to run June 19 to 25 on the ABFF PLAY platform and the festival earlier announced that its 2023 edition will open with Joel Taylor’s directorial debut. They Cloned Tyronea Netflix film that stars John Boyega, Teyonah Parris and Jamie Foxx on the trail of a nefarious government conspiracy.

“There’s a variety of projects from our network and streaming partners this year. We’re excited for our attendees to experience all of the great content both live and virtually. From conspiracy theories to romance and comedy horror, to learning about the first Black supermodel named Donyale Luna to grace the cover of British vogue. There really is something for everyone to see at the festival,” festival producer and ABFF Ventures president and COO Nicole Friday said in a statement.

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