[02/25/05 - 12:00 AM]
TNT to Present the Film Life Movie Awards (Working Title), a Celebration of Black Cinema: Past, Present and Future

[via press release from TNT]

TNT To Present THE FILM LIFE MOVIE AWARDS (working title), A Celebration of Black Cinema: Past, Present and Future

Jeff Friday (American Black Film Festival) and Suzanne de Passe (The 2002- 2003 Essence Awards) To Executive-Produce Event Set for May

Turner Network Television (TNT), television�s destination for drama, will present a new awards show to recognize artistic achievement by persons of African descent in connection with feature-length motion pictures, both in front of and behind the camera, as well as to give merit to outstanding films portraying the black experience, it was announced today by Steve Koonin, executive vice president and chief operating officer for TNT and TBS. THE FILM LIFE MOVIE AWARDS (working title), airing Saturday, May 21, will be executive-produced by Jeff Friday, founder and CEO of Film Life and the American Black Film Festival held annually in Miami, and by Suzanne de Passe of de Passe Entertainment.

�THE FILM LIFE MOVIE AWARDS is a perfect opportunity for TNT to recognize and celebrate the enormous contributions black artists have made to the art of cinema,� said Koonin. �We are proud to be able to bring this very special event to our viewers and especially proud to be collaborating with Jeff and Suzanne, who have worked so hard to promote the achievements of African-Americans in film.�

THE FILM LIFE MOVIE AWARDS will be a star-studded celebration and will be taped at the Pantages Theatre in Los Angeles on Sunday, May 15. Awards will be given in seven competitive categories, including Film of the Year, Best Director, Best Performance by an Actor, Best Performance by an Actress, Best Supporting Role � Male, Best Supporting Role � Female and Best Screenplay. Honorary awards include a Distinguished Career Achievement Award and a Rising Star Award. In addition, THE FILM LIFE MOVIE AWARDS ceremony will include a celebration of new inductees into the Classic Cinema Hall of Fame and a special presentation of the HBO Short Film Award.

Nominations for the 2005 FLMA will be announced in April. The FLMA Jury, comprised of film critics, entertainment editors representing African-American media outlets and prestigious members of the artistic community, will determine the nominees and winners. Eligible films and persons will be considered for awards from U.S. theatrically released motion pictures between Feb. 1, 2004, and Jan. 31, 2005.

Since 1997, Jeff Friday has made a name in the film industry by providing opportunities for independent black filmmakers to showcase their work to a broad audience inclusive of key industry executives. In 1997, he began the Acapulco Black Film Festival. In 2002, with the steadily rising festival attendance catching the eye of more sponsors, Friday moved the festival to Miami�s South Beach and renamed it the American Black Film Festival. The relocation has only served to strengthen the importance of the festival to the independent black filmmaker community and Hollywood at large. The FLMA is a property of Film Life, Inc., a New York-based film marketing and distribution company. Its mission is to spearhead the global distribution of quality black films and be the leading American brand producing black movies and related entertainment content.

Suzanne de Passe has produced a number of high-profile award shows and specials, including the Emmy-winning Motown 25: Yesterday, Today, Forever and Motown Returns to the Apollo. Additionally, she executive-produced The Essence Awards in 2002 and 2003, as well as The Annual NAACP Image Awards over a three-year period, concluding in 2003. She has also executive-produced such memorable television miniseries as Lonesome Dove, The Jacksons: An American Dream, Buffalo Girls, Small Sacrifices and The Temptations. In addition, she was nominated for an Academy Award� for co-writing the screenplay for Lady Sings the Blues.

Turner Network Television (TNT), television�s destination for drama and one of cable�s top-rated networks, offers original movies, such as the Johnson & Johnson Spotlight PresentationSM 14 Hours; original limited series, including Into the West, an epic six-week television event from DreamWorks Television and master storyteller and executive producer Steven Spielberg; original recurring series, including the detective drama The Closer, starring Kyra Sedgwick, and the crime thriller Wanted, with Gary Cole; powerful one-hour dramas, such as Law & Order, Without a Trace, ER, NYPD Blue, Charmed, Judging Amy and Angel; broadcast premiere movies; and championship sports coverage, including NASCAR and the NBA. TNT is also available in high-definition.

Turner Broadcasting System, Inc., a Time Warner company, is a major producer of news and entertainment product around the world and a leading provider of programming for the television industry.

  [february 2005]  

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