Archives for : BLAXPLOITATION

Detroit 9000: Flash Back Friday!

10659231_941038692579727_713974640995421524_n

 

Detroit 9000 (1973)

Starring:
Hari Rhodes
Vonetta McGee
Scatman Crothers
Herbert Jefferson Jr.
Rudy Challenger

Storyline:
After a fundraiser for a black politician is robbed, Detroit police put two detectives, one white and one black, on the case, who try to work together under boiling political pressure.

Three the Hard Way:40th Anniversary!

 

 

10409470_688648334523163_475305839659690193_n

 

40th anniversary of Three the Hard Way circa June 26, 1974.

Three The Hard Way was released in 1974 and is considered one of the classic action movies of the blaxploitation genre. Directed by the acclaimed Gordon Parks Jr., son of Gordon Parks (Shaft 1971) and director of Super Fly (1972), the film stars the three biggest black action stars of the era; Jim Brown (The Dirty Dozen, El Condor, Slaughter) as record producer Jimmy Lait, Fred Williamson (Black Caesar, Bucktown) as entrepreneur Jagger Daniels, and Jim Kelly (Enter the Dragon, Black Samurai, Black Belt Jones, One Down Two to Go) as martial arts master Mister Keyes.

Sam Greenlee:(July 13, 1930-May 19, 2014)

38-SPOOK

 

Author of ‘Spook Who Sat By The Door’ has died at 83.

was an African-American writer, best known for his controversial novel The Spook Who Sat by the Door, which was first published in London by Allison & Busby in March 1969, and was chosen as The Sunday Times Book of the Year. The novel was subsequently made into the 1973 movie of the same name, directed by Ivan Dixon and co-produced and written by Greenlee.

Born in Chicago, Greenlee attended the University of Wisconsin (BS, political science, 1952) and the University of Chicago (1954-7). He was a member of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity Inc (Beta Omicron 1954). He served in the military (1952-4), earning the rank of first lieutenant, and subsequently worked for the United States Information Agency, serving in Iraq (in 1958 he was awarded the Meritorious Service Medal for bravery during the Baghdad revolution), Pakistan,

Indonesia, and Greece between 1957 and 1965.Leaving the United States foreign service after eight years, he stayed on in Greece. He undertook further study (1963-4) at the University of Thessaloniki, and lived for three years on the island of Mykonos, where he began to write his first novel. That was eventually published in 1969 as The Spook Who sat by the Door, the story of a black man who is recruited as a CIA agent and having mastered the skills of a spy then uses them to lead a black guerrilla movement in the US.In 2011, an independent documentary film entitled Infiltrating Hollywood: The Rise and Fall of the Spook Who Sat by the Door was filmed by Christine Acham and Clifford Ward, about the making and reception of the Spook film.

Other works by Greenlee include Baghdad Blues, a 1976 novel based on his experiences traveling in Iraq in the 1950s, Blues for an African Princess, a 1971 collection of poems, and Ammunition (poetry, 1975). In 1990 Greenlee was the Illinois poet laureate. He also wrote the screenplay for a film short called Lisa Trotter (2010), a story adapted from AristophanesLysistrata.

Sparkle: Saten & Sister

7936_2

Did you think me for the coat I brought you?

Claudia Lennear: Brown Sugar!

thSIQWY3R6 When backing vocalist Claudia, 63, dated Mick Jagger, she inspired one of the Rolling Stones’ greatest rock anthems, as she tells Pauline McLeod

“Around the time Brown Sugar became a hit for The Rolling Stones, Mick Jagger and I were always seen together in restaurants and nightclubs in Los Angeles. That’s why people thought the song was about me, and Mick later confirmed that it was.

The airport photo of the two of us was taken at Las Vegas and that moment stands out in my memory because it was the first time I’d ever been on a private plane. I was 17, maybe 18, and I thought we were just going out to the disco in LA. Then we arrived at the airport and I was immediately suspicious when I got to the plane and there were no other passengers apart from Mick, Keith Richards and the record producer Glyn Johns. But I wasn’t nervous. The Stones had a bad-boy image but they were perfect gentlemen.

We flew to Vegas and went to a casino where Mick taught me how to play baccarat then we hopped back on the jet and came home to LA.

Mick and I dated for a long while.

It was an on-off thing because of our different schedules, but we would talk all the time on the phone. He was a lot of fun to be with, although his public persona is quite different to the way he is in private. I found him a quiet guy who was very British, with good manners, so I was always smitten by his behavior.I was also the muse for David Bowie’s song Lady Grinning Soul.I’d seen David’s show in Detroit, he asked me for some input and we struck up a friendship after that. I had to pinch myself a few times. This was the top one per cent of Rock’n’Roll that

I just happened to make friends with. I was on quite a roll, wasn’t I?When I was a kid, my first love was language and I hoped to become a translator. But my family moved to California just as I hit my teenage years and I started going out to see bands. Then I began meeting the movers and shakers in the industry, and my career took off.

Ike Turner – Tina’s husband – hired me on the spot for his band. I was an “Ikette” for three years, until I had a little spat with Tina, but by that time

I was ready to move on anyway.

After that I was a background vocalist for Eric Clapton, George Harrison and Bob Dylan at the first ever benefit gig, The Concert For Bangladesh, at Madison Square Garden. I sang with all kinds of bands and had my own solo album released. But then the 80s came round and the music business began to change. Hip-hop and rap were the new ideas and I didn’t feel I had my finger on the pulse any more. I was a single mother by then, too, so I decided that maybe I should change my career and do something that would bring in a steady pay check.I’m a teacher now, using my language skills, and it’s funny because every time there’s a new intake of students, I can guarantee that one of them will come up to me with, ‘Miss Lennear, we saw this lady on YouTube who has your name…’Life has become rather surreal of late but so exciting because I’m featured in the Oscar-winning documentary about background vocalists, 20 Feet From Stardom. There are now offers coming in for me to sing again, I’m talking record deals and putting bands together, and I feel like I’m picking up where I left off. It is just so cool.”

20 Feet From Stardom is out now.

Writer :Pauline McLeod

 

Foxy Brown: 40th Anniversary!

MPW-34942

Foxy Brown circa April 5, 1974. Starring Antonio Fargas as Link Brown.

Foxy decides to pose as a prostitute to infiltrate the company, and helps save a fellow black woman from a life of drugs and sexual exploitation. This leads Foxy to a variety of revenge-themed set pieces — often violent and sexual — that range from cremating sex slave dealers to castrating a foe and presenting his severed genitals to his girlfriend.

Black Belt Jones:40th Anniversary!

 

1453348_645321368855860_69355041_nToday is the 40th Anniversary of Black Belt Jones circa March 24, 1974. Black Belt Jones OST circa 1974

Damion ” World” Hardy: American Gangster Part I

LIL KIM

We all know that when the feds get a new case they construct it based on the lies, half-truths and insinuations perpetrated by rats, cooperators and snitches. It doesn’t matter if what the witnesses are saying out of their mouths is true or not. The feds just roll with it. There is no investigation or nothing substantial going on. The U.S. Attorneys just go by what their snitches are saying. The cooperator’s words become the universal truth that prosecutors base their case off of.  And in reality, the snitches are just saying whatever it is they think the feds want to hear, so they can get out of whatever jam they have managed to get themselves into. Whatever happened to the saying, if you are willing to do the crime be willing to do the time?

Nowadays these so-called hustlers, players and gangsters get themselves into a messy situation where they are facing the prospect of spending decades of their lives behind bars, due to the governments War on Drugs, the mandatory minimums and sentencing guidelines, and it seems they will say just about anything to get out of it. They’ll rat on their friends, their family and in some cases, even their moms. Basically they will tell the feds whatever it is they want to hear. There is no honor in the streets and when dudes flip they say, “Charge it to the game.”

These big multi-layered RICO act cases that the U.S. Attorneys crank out have become more a matter of the feds getting their snitches stories to fit the indictments they have concocted, and less a practice of justice or  looking for the truth. There have been numerous cases we have reported on and exposed here in this magazine that show how the U.S. government works. They are using statutes made to convict Mafia families and Colombian drug lords on inner-city drug crews, who are usually more unorganized chaos than organized crime. The feds have a tendency to identify the ultimate target of their probe before the investigation into their affairs has even started. If someone’s name is ringing in the street than they are a target. Especially in regards to the feds’ tough on crime policies as they apply to their war on minorities. Because let’s keep it real, black people account for 15 percent of the U.S. population, but 50 percent of the prison population. How can those numbers be justified?

The feds are putting cases on people, but let’s face it they aren’t doing it alone. And the snitches play along, doing whatever it takes to get that time cut. They say one thing in their proffers to get people indicted, but once they get on the stand they change the story up, doing whatever the prosecutor wants them to do so they can to get that 5k1 or Rule 35 sentence reduction motion. Ain’t nobody trying to do that 20 year sentence even for their so-called man. In the streets it’s every man for himself. Because the feds don’t play. Dudes get busted and talk that “Death Before Dishonor” shit, but when it comes down to it if they want to get that time cut you know what they are doing. And it has nothing to do with death before dishonor. The prosecutors are the same way; they don’t care what they have to do to get their convictions. They have no sense of honor and justice or right and wrong. They will literally do whatever it takes. The whole profession of attorneys is a pit of snakes and sharks.

Maxims like “Death Before Dishonor” and “Stop Snitching” don’t exist in the drug game and criminal underworld anymore, except in very rare cases. They are ideals of the past, held up in memory and supposedly cherished, but not honored in the present day. Most dudes in the streets are playing a dirty game. When that indictment comes down its literally every man for himself. It’s like the buffet, whoever is first in line gets the best deal. You heard Rick Ross talking about, “I caught a charge,” but nigga you didn’t catch no charge. The drug game to you is a fantasy, a hip-hop video where you fake it to make it. But this shit isn’t entertainment, this isn’t about fronting and stunting, this shit is real life. Dudes are doing life because these crab-ass busters can’t hold their weight. These dudes are talking about how gangsta they are these days but in truth they are suckers. They think it’s a music video or a video game, like they can walk off the set, change the song or hit the do over or reset button when the feds roll in. But there are no do over’s in life, homie. The drug game and life in the streets is not Grand Theft Auto. The truth and reality of it all is much more serious.

The brothers doing life in the pen know what we’re talking about. They are the ones doing hard time. They have lived the life, talked the talk and walked the walk. They are the real gangsters. The ones the rappers rap about and portray themselves to be. Their lifestyles are what the rappers pretend to flaunt. The reality is not MTV Cribs though. Imagine being locked down since 2005 and you haven’t even blew trial or been found guilty yet. Imagine that the feds consider you so dangerous, so gangster that they have held you in limbo, even though they know their charges won’t stick at trial. You’re probably saying this doesn’t happen in the USA. This can’t happen. It won’t happen. We are the land of the free and the home of the brave, but we are here to tell you it can happen and it does. It’s not about justice it’s about Just-Us and in Amerikkka, the kkk mentality still pervades. Case in point, the Cash Money Brothers, straight outta Do or Die Bedstuy, Brooklyn, New York. The borough that brought us the Notorious B.I.G., Jay-Z, Lil’ Kim, Big Daddy Kane and the part of the city that’s known for producing the most thorough gangsters, thugs and hoodlums to grace the streets of the Big Apple.

Cash Money Brothers was a crew formed in Lafayette Gardens Projects in Brooklyn in the early-90s by brothers Damion “World” Hardy and Myron “Wise” Hardy. With their homeboys and associates they allegedly held it down in L.G. and made a name for themselves across the city as a gangster and respected crew, but as various members including World went to prison on different charges the crew became inactive and remained just a legend on the streets of New York. But when a series of murders in the early 2000s were laid at the crew’s doorstep the feds stepped in.

On July 19, 2005, Roslynn Mauskopf, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York announced the filing of federal racketeering and narcotics charges against Damion “World” Hardy and 12 additional leaders, members and associates of the Cash Money Brothers or CMB, what they termed a violent Brooklyn street gang responsible for five murders, widespread crack distribution, the attempted murder of a witness, the kidnapping and attempted robbery of a drug dealer, assault and illegal firearms possession.

The charges and arrests followed an 18 month joint ICE, FBI and NYPD investigation coordinated by the U.S. Attorney’s office as part of an ongoing initiative to eliminate violent street gangs that erode the quality of life in many of the districts neighborhoods. “The arrests announced today strike a devastating blow to a drug gang responsible for spreading fear and violence in one of our communities,” stated U.S. Attorney Mauskopf. “When gangs flood our streets with drugs, assassinate rivals, attempt to murder witnesses and endanger the lives of innocent residents, we will mobilize all resources available, including federal prosecution, through the RICO statute. This case is the latest of several successful joint investigations that demonstrate our commitment to protect public housing from gang violence. We are determined to return control of these communities to their rightful law-abiding residents.”

The government’s investigation revealed that for more than 10 years, CMB members, led by Damion Hardy, controlled narcotics trafficking in the Lafayette Gardens Houses in the Bedford-Stuyvesant section of Brooklyn through violence and intimidation directed against their drug trafficking competitors, innocent civilians and potential witnesses. Hardy, Eric “E-Bay” Moore, Dwayne “Thor” Myers, James “Popsie” Sessoms, Kenwayne “Stro” Jones, Robert “Troub” Footman, Carl “Big Jim” Davis, James “Jimbo” Farrior, Lamont “Sambo” Johnson, Zareh “Puff” Sarkissian, Abubakr Raheem, DJebara “DJ” McMillian and Isheen “Sha” Campbell were charged with conspiring between 1991 and August 2004 to distribute crack cocaine using apartments they controlled in Lafayette Gardens to cook, store and buy the drugs.

“This case is another example of the continuing resolve of the FBI and our partners to reign in gang violence,” FBI agent Mark Mershon said. “The lethal combination of gangs, guns and drugs can terrorize neighborhoods and victimize innocent people. Our purpose fundamentally, is to secure for all New Yorkers the right to be safe and out of harm’s way in their own neighborhoods, whether they live on Park Avenue or in public housing.” World was identified as the founder and leader of CMB with E-Bay, Thor, Popsie and Stro being named as the main members in charge of the crew. The feds also attributed numerous murders to CMB.

Throughout the 1990s the government claims that Ivory “Peanut” Davis was one of CMB’s drug dealing rivals in Lafayette Gardens. On June 12, 1999, Davis’ nephew, Rumel Davis, shot and killed World’s brother Myron “Wise” Hardy during a so called turf dispute while World was locked up in the state. When World got out he investigated the circumstances of his brother’s death and the feds alleged that World and the other members of CMB retaliated by conspiring to murder Peanut and four of his associates. World, E-Bay and Puff were charged with the murder of Darryl “Homicide” Baum on June 10, 2000. This is the same Homicide rapper 50 Cent accused of shooting him nine times earlier that same year in May. 50 Cent also implied in his song Many Men that Hommo was killed in retaliation for shooting him. But like a lot of 50 Cent’s gangsta rap fantasies this tale has yet to be clarified one way or another. So in reality it’s up to the streets to decide.

Homicide was a Brooklyn stick-up kid and gun thug who counted boxer Mike Tyson as a close friend and employer. He was even living at Mike Tyson’s home when he was murdered. The feds concluded that World targeted Homicide because of his association with Peanut. They alleged E-Bay shot Homicide in the back of the head at the corner of Quincy Street and Marcy Avenue and fled in a get-away car driven by Puff. The feds implicated World, E-Bay and Abubakr Raheem in the August 1, 2000 murder of James “JR” Hamilton also. On World’s order E-Bay allegedly shot and killed JR inside a seafood restaurant that Hamilton owned at 102 Sarasota Avenue in Brooklyn. E-Bay than fled in a get-away car driven by Raheem. JR was supposedly killed due to his association with Peanut also.

According to the feds the CMB crew was not finished with their murder spree, more bodies had to drop. At 4:00 a.m. on the morning of August 10, 2000, E-Bay carrying a .40 caliber handgun that belonged to Thor, allegedly shot Peanut twice in the back as he sat in a car parked in front of Club NV, a nightclub on the corner of Spring Street and Hudson Street in Manhattan on World’s orders. Peanut sped away, but lost control of his car and killed an innocent pedestrian. Peanut subsequently died from his gunshot wounds. Both deaths were attributed to World. World’s and CMB’s revenge was complete but the killing continued.

On July 25, 2003, Homicide’s brother, Tyrone “T-Rock” Baum, who the feds alleged World believed was seeking to avenge his brother’s murder, was killed. On World’s order, Thor and Raheem located “T-Rock” by a construction site at Reid Avenue and Hancock Street in Brooklyn where “T-Rock” was shot three times in the head. “These arrests have dismantled a major criminal enterprise that has engaged in murder, kidnapping, extortion and narcotics trafficking. These criminals have threatened our citizens and the well-being of our communities. No more, today, they are off the streets and will be prosecuted for their crimes.” U.S. Attorney Mauskopf said. That is the feds’ line and they are sticking to it but during Raheem’s trial the government’s star witness Edward “Taz” Cooke didn’t testify because the government wouldn’t let him. The other witness Shelby “Moo” Henderson stated that Taz could have been the mastermind behind the murders of JR, Hommo and T-Rock because JR was running numbers and that was a business Taz was involved in, not World. And Hommo and T-Rock allegedly had something to do with Taz’s father getting killed. So Taz had revenge on his mind for Homo and T-Rock. And he wanted to get Brooklyn on lock with the numbers running so he got JR killed and once he got locked up he put the feds on World and got him locked up. Court records also relate that Taz was present at all three murders, not World.

Vintage Black Glamour: By Nichelle Gainer

 

black glamour#2

 

I want to thank everyone who has expressed interest in my book and, at long last, I am happy to give you some book news! The book is scheduled to be published in Spring 2014 and starting today, you can visit vintageblackglamourBOOK.com and …register your interest in the book.

Registering is different from pre-ordering (available starting early February). My publisher, Rocket 88 an imprint of London-based Essential Works, has created this website to establish the level in interest in the book. After you register you will be contacted by email in early 2014 with further details about the book and, if you wish, you may pre-order the book at that time. Once again, thank you so much! More links are in the comment section ~ Nichelle Gainer http://vintageblackglamourbook.com/

Vintage Black Glamour by Nichelle Gainer (Spring 2014, Essential Works/Rocket 88 books). http://bit.ly/VBGbook
Description.

Vintage Black Glamour is a forthcoming book (Spring 2014, Essential Works/Rocket 88 Books) and visual tribute to some of the glamorous, accomplished and often groundbreaking black women – legendary and obscure – of the 20th century.

Juanita Moore:October 19, 1914-January 1, 2014

Studio_publicity_Moore_Juanita

 

Juanita Moore (October 19, 1914 – January 1, 2014) was an American film, television, and stage actress. She was the fifth African American to be nominated for an Academy Award in any category, and the third in the Supporting Actress category at a time when only a single African American had won an Oscar. Her most famous role was as Annie Johnson in the movie Imitation of Life (1959).

 

Born in Los Angeles in 1914, Moore was a chorus girl at the Cotton Club before becoming a film extra while working in theater. After making her film debut in Pinky (1949),[1] she had a number of bit parts and supporting roles in motion pictures through the 1950s and 1960s. However, her role in Imitation of Life (1959), a remake, as housekeeper Annie Johnson, whose daughter Sarah Jane (Susan Kohner) passes for white, won her a nomination for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress. She was also nominated for the Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actress in a Motion Picture for the role.[2] When the two versions of Imitation of Life were released together on DVD, the earlier film was released in 1934, one of the bonus features was a new interview with Juanita Moore.

Moore continued to perform in front of the camera, with a role in the movie Disney’s The Kid (2000) and guest-starring roles on television shows Dragnet, Marcus Welby, M.D., ER and Judging Amy.

On April 23, 2010, a new print of Imitation of Life (1959) was screened at the TCM Film Festival in Los Angeles, to which Moore and co-star Kohner were invited. After the screening, the two women appeared on stage for a question-and-answer session hosted by TCM’s Robert Osborne. Moore and Kohner received standing ovations.

Moore was married for 50 years to Charles Burris; he died in 2001. He was a Los Angeles bus driver and, although she was a frequent passenger, she had stepped out in front of his approaching bus to cross the street to a local bar, hoping to find someone to study for the Inès Serrano role in the play No Exit—Serrano was a lesbian, and Moore was unfamiliar with the lifestyle. She and Burris married a few weeks later.

Her grandson is actor/producer Kirk Kelley-Kahn, who is CEO/President of “Cambridge Players – Next Generation”, a theatre troupe whose founding members included Moore, Esther Rolle, Helen Martin, Lynn Hamilton and Royce Wallace.[

Moore died at her home in Los Angeles on January 1, 2014, from natural causes. She was 99 years old.

Kanye VS. Jimmy!

1383929_613534368708759_488493652_n

Tamara Dobson:Rest In Paradise (May 14, 1944 – October 1, 2006)

tamara-dobson-cleopatra-jones

Solomon Northup’s Odyssey:12 Years A Slave

1238827_10151592785711689_1557249695_n

12 Years a Slave is a 2013 historical drama film based on the autobiography Twelve Years a Slave by Solomon Northup, a free black man who was kidnapped and sold into slavery. The film is directed by Steve McQueen and written by John Ridley. Chiwetel Ejiofor stars as Solomon Northup. 12 Years a Slave premiered at the Telluride Film Festival on August 30, 2013. The film is scheduled to be commercially released on October 18, 2013.

12 Years a Slave is based on the 1853 autobiography of Solomon Northup, a free black man who was kidnapped in Washington, D.C., in 1841 and sold into slavery. He worked on plantations in the state of Louisiana for 12 years before his release.

12 Years a Slave is directed by Steve McQueen with John Ridley (Justice League, Red Tails, Static Shock, Three Kings) adapting a screenplay based on Solomon Northup‘s 1853 autobiography Twelve Years a Slave. McQueen’s project, in development for some time, was announced in August 2011 with McQueen to direct and Chiwetel Ejiofor to star as Solomon Northup, a free black man who was kidnapped and sold into slavery.

McQueen compared Ejiofor’s conduct “of class and dignity” to that of Sidney Poitier and Harry Belafonte. In October 2011, Michael Fassbender (who starred in McQueen’s previous films Hunger and Shame) joined the cast. In early 2012, the rest of the roles were cast, and filming was scheduled to begin at the end of June 2012.

With a production budget of $20 million, filming began in New Orleans, Louisiana on June 27, 2012. It lasted for seven weeks, concluding on August 13, 2012.

The Ward Brothers:The Real Macks!

The-Mack-1973-poster-A

Frank Ward with his brother Ted at the Muhammad Ali – Joe Frazier fight.

Frank Ward, Max Julien, Dick Anthony Williams, and Ted Ward in ” The Mack”rank Ward made sure Max Julien portrayed him correctly in the 1973 film The Mack and provided protection for the cast and crew on the set. Julien drove Ward’s customized Caddy in the film.  Frank, his brothers Ted, Willie, and Andrew all appeared in the movie.

He was dating actress Carol Speed during the few weeks of filming and was murdered in his Rose Royce before the film was completed in Oakland.   Without his protection, the completion of the film was done in LA and they dedicated “The Mack,” to Frank Ward.

Cleopatra Jones: 40th Anniversary!

 cleopatra_jones The 40th Anniversary of Cleopatra Jones starring Tamara Dobson…circa 1973

Richard Roundtree: Happy Birthday!

richard_roundtree

Jim Kelly: Rest In Paradise

Jim-Kelly-Banner-1

Los Angeles (CNN) — Jim Kelly, who parlayed his martial arts skills into a successful but brief career in action movies, has died. He was 67.

Kelly’s former wife Marilyn Dishman told CNN that the actor died Saturday of cancer, but did not elaborate.

Kelly worked as a martial arts instructor in Los Angeles when he was tapped for his first role in the action movie, “Melinda.” But he is best known for his work in the 1973 Bruce Lee film “Enter the Dragon.”

Kelly’s appearance in the movie was brief — fans lamented he was offed too soon — but his electrifying Afro, lanky 6-foot-2 frame and his wisecracks left an impression.

Producers came calling. And he capitalized on the attention by taking on the title role in “Black Belt Jones” the following year. A spate of other roles followed throughout the 70s, most notably “Three the Hard Way,” but then dried up.

In later years Kelly took up tennis professionally, becoming a ranked player on the USTA senior circuit.

“I never left the movie business,” Kelly told The Los Angeles Times in 2010, when a retrospective DVD set of his movies came out. “It’s just that after a certain point, I didn’t get the type of projects that I wanted to do.”

But he was never far from the screen or the spotlight.

In 2004, he starred with basketball star Lebron James in a Nike commercial that spoofed another Bruce Lee film, “Game of Death.” And he sometimes appeared at comic book conventions, much to the delight of his lasting fans.

Among them is Anthony Bourdain, star of CNN’s “Parts Unknown.”

“RIP Jim Kelly, hero of my grind house youth,” he posted on Kelly’s Facebook page.

The page posted the following announcement Sunday about the actor’s death:

“It is with sadness and regret that we must announce the passing of a great man and legend Jim Kelly. He will be deeply missed by all. Jim had great love for his family, friends, tennis and martial arts.

We are devastated by Jim’s passing but through faith and support from family, friends and fans-we are comforted, blessed and will remain strong.

He was survived by his lifetime partner of 33 years and wife.”

Mark Clark: Happy Birthday!

16636_208335267532_673902532_4020795_1045438_n

Mark Clark (June 28, 1947 – December 4, 1969) was a member of the Black Panther Party. He was killed with Fred Hampton during a Chicago police raid on December 4, 1969.

Mark Clark was born on June 28, 1947, in Peoria, Illinois, to Elder William Clark and Fannie Bardley Clark. He became active in the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) at an early age and joined in demonstrating against discrimination in employment, housing and education. According to John Gwynn, former President of state and local chapters of the NAACP, Mark Clark and his brothers played a vigorous role in helping keep other teenagers in line.

“He could call for order when older persons or adults could not,” he said of Clark in a December 1969 interview with the Chicago Tribune.[2] In that same Chicago Tribune article, family members are quoted as saying Mark Clark enjoyed reading and art and was good at drawing portraits. He attended Manual High School and Illinois Central Junior College in Peoria.

After reading their literature and the Ten Point Program, Clark joined the Black Panther Party and later decided to organize a local Peoria, Illinois chapter. He went from church to church in an effort to find a building to house a free breakfast program. He was eventually successful when Pastor Blaine Ramsey agreed to allow a free breakfast program. Church members later voted against continuing the breakfast program because of concerns of government monitoring of the Black Panther Party.

Some family members and friends say Mark Clark knew he would be murdered in Chicago.[2] In the pre-dawn hours of December 4, 1969, Chicago Police stormed into the apartment of BPP State Chairman Fred Hampton at 2337 W. Monroe Street, killing both Mark Clark and Fred Hampton, and causing serious bodily harm to Verlina Brewer, Ronald Satchel, Blair Anderson and Brenda Harris.

Fred Hampton and Deborah Johnson, who was eight-and-a-half months pregnant with their child, were sleeping in the south bedroom. Ronald “Doc” Satchel, Blair Anderson and Verlina Brewer were asleep in the north bedroom.

Brenda Harris was sleeping on a bed by the south wall of the living room, and Harold Bell slept on a mattress on the floor in the middle of the room. Louis Truelock was also lying on the bed with Harris. Mark Clark was asleep in a chair in the living room. The first shot hit Mark Clark in the heart.

Clark’s gun went off as he fell, according to Brenda Harris, who watched from the bed in the corner. A federal grand jury determined that the police fired between 82 and 99 shots while most of the occupants lay sleeping. Only one shot was proven to have come from a Panther gun.[

Marilyn Coleman: Rest In Peace

coleman

Davis & Washington: Blaxploitation Film!

kd

Last week Friday, Film Independent announced the 22 filmmakers and 10 projects selected for its 11th annual Fast Track program at the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Fast Track Welcome Luncheon, during the ongoing Los Angeles Film Festival.

 

The  program is an intensive, three-day film-financing market, during which  participants are connected with established financiers, production  companies, agents, managers and other film industry professionals who  can move their current projects forward.

I’ll be highlighting those projects that will be of most interest to this blog, starting with this one: Third Girl from the Left – an adaptation of Martha Southgate’s novel of the same name. The project hails from exec producer Vincent Harris for Vantage Media Group, and producer Amy Hobby, for the Tangerine Entertainment production house. Here’s a lengthy description:

THIRD  GIRL FROM THE LEFT is the story of the other side of Hollywood in the  1970’s, of what it means to be black, sexy, smart and full of dreams in a  land where “blaxploitation” is as literal as it sounds.

Yet this is not  a ‘black’ story. This is a vivid and dynamic story about families, all  families; and not just the ones we’re born into, but the ones we make  for ourselves. It is a compelling saga of love, family secrets and the  ambitions of mothers and daughters. It is also a story about the movies  and the hold they can have on us, sometimes even despite our better  judgment.

Angela Edwards, is the shining center of the film, around  which we deftly shift points of view, weaving the stories of her mother  Mildred and daughter Tamara. Angela and Mildred clash in the way mothers  and daughters often do, but manage to forge a bond during many  afternoons spent together at the local cinema.

Angela yearns to be  onscreen herself and eventually leaves her stifling hometown of Tulsa  for Hollywood in 1972. It does not live up to her imagination. She does  not make it big. Instead, she lands bit parts in campy blaxploitation  pictures.

In a world where sexual favors to men in power are  commonplace, even roles like these require young actresses to offer up  more than talent in order to get the gig. Angela dutifully complies.  Angela doesn’t become a star, but the allure of movies has marked her  for life, just as it did her mother, and just as it will her own  daughter.

The project, which was also awarded the Millennium Entertainment Fellowship, a $10,000 production grant, currently lists Kerry Washington and Viola Davis as its stars. Although there’s no word yet on who exactly each actress will play.

          

This website content was created with the help of Ultimate Tinymce!

%d bloggers like this: