American Black Film Festival Returns to the Beach

Mar 03, 2009, 09:00 ET from Film Life

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HBO(R) is the festival's Founding and Presenting Sponsor

NEW YORK, March 3 /PRNewswire/ -- Film Life's American Black Film Festival (ABFF), will be held June 24th-27th, 2009 on South Beach in Miami, FL. Home Box Office, Inc. (HBO) is the festival's Founding and Premier Sponsor. "We began 13 years ago as an annual film retreat, showcasing and celebrating the best and brightest filmmakers of color. We are returning to that model, and will restore the tropical intimacy the ABFF has always been known for," said Jeff Friday, CEO of Film Life, Inc. and Founder of ABFF.

Supported in part by the Greater Miami Convention and Visitors Bureau (GMCVB), Miami hosted the ABFF for five years. "It was one of our most successful and well attended events," said GMCVB President & CEO William D. Talbert, III, CDME. "We are delighted ABFF is returning to Miami and look forward to continuing our partnership with Film Life and the film and entertainment community at large," Talbert added.

This year's event will open with a star studded Hollywood premiere and close with the ABFF Independent Film Awards. "Our mission is to cultivate the careers of the most talented emerging filmmakers and facilitate the distribution of their commercially viable work," said Melanie Sharee, Festival Director. "We have revised our programming goal and selection criteria to reflect our focus on quality over quantity," Sharee added.

Corporate support for the 13th annual festival includes: Allstate, HBO(R), Nielsen Media Research, Nickelodeon, One Village Entertainment, Writer's Guild of America West, Film Florida, Miami-Dade County Film & Entertainment Office, Essence, Vibe, Black Enterprise, Uptown, Upscale, Heart & Soul, Monarch, Precious Times, Automotive Rhythms, and Black Noir.

"HBO recognized the important niche the ABFF filled 13 years ago and we have been proud supporters and partners with Film Life since then," said Olivia Smashum, Executive Vice President, Affiliate Marketing, HBO. "Miami is the perfect backdrop for this festival and we are very pleased that it is returning to this great city."

Festival and registration information is available online at, via phone 646-375-2144 ext 1 or by e-mail:

Founded in 1997, the ABFF is an industry retreat and competitive marketplace for films by and about people of color. The festival's mission is to facilitate distribution opportunities for quality films and introduce the top echelon of emerging artists to the industry at large. The ABFF is a property of Film Life, Inc., a New York-based event marketing, production and distribution company founded in 2002 by Jeff Friday (CEO).

SOURCE Film Life