The Urbanworld Film Festival Presented by BET Networks Announces 2012 Festival Slate

Ava DuVernay's "Middle of Nowhere" is Closing Night Selection

Aug 23, 2012, 16:14 ET from BET Networks

NEW YORK, Aug. 23, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- The 16th Annual Urbanworld Film Festival (, presented by BET Networks, announced its 2012 slate today.

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The nation's largest competitive multicultural film festival, Urbanworld will take place September 19-23, 2012 at midtown Manhattan's AMC 34th Street and will screen 49 films, including 17 world premieres

Ava DuVernay's 2012 Sundance-winning Middle of Nowhere (Emayatzy Corinealdi, Lorraine Toussaint, Dondre Whitfield, Omari Hardwick), a feature film based on the story of a medical student whose world is turned upside down when her husband is incarcerated, will serve as Urbanworld's Closing Night selection. DuVernay is the first African American woman to win "Best Director" at Sundance.

Highlights of Urbanworld 2012 include: The Girl Is In Trouble (starring Columbus Short, Wilmer Valderama), Won't Back Down (starring Viola Davis, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Rosie Perez), The Triptych (featuring visual artists Sanford Biggers, Wangechi Mutu, Barron Claiborne), Four (featuring Wendell Pierce), Doin' It In The Park (co-directed by Kevin Couliau and Bobbito Garcia), and narrative shorts directed by Salli Richardson-Whitfield (Grace) and Hill Harper (The Truth). 

BET Networks returns for a fifth year as presenting sponsor along with founding sponsor HBO®, who will host the Urbanworld Digital program again this year. "BET Networks is proud to support the 16th Annual Urbanworld Film Festival celebrating the amazing creativity and work of our community's most talented filmmakers," said Loretha Jones, President of Original Programming. "This is the leading showcase for multicultural films, which connects and brings the BET audience closer to the new wave of emerging talent. We applaud the Urbanworld® Foundation Inc. for its continuous leadership in redefining the multicultural roles in the world of entertainment and look forward to this year's upcoming slate of films."

"For 16 years, Urbanworld has brought hundreds of multicultural films to light and connected countless filmmakers with audiences around the world," said Gabrielle Glore, executive producer and head of programming for Urbanworld. "With the ongoing support of partners such as BET and HBO, we will continue to provide a vehicle for diverse filmmakers to tell their stories, while expanding the perception of 'urban' sensibility."



  • To Be Announced


  • Middle of Nowhere – Directed by Ava DuVernay – New York Premiere


  • An Oversimplification of Her Beauty – Directed by Terence Nance
  • BMF: The Rise & Fall of A Hip Hop Drug Empire – Directed by Don Sikorski – World Premiere
  • The Girl is In Trouble – Directed by Julius Onah
  • The Triptych – Directed by Terence Nance
  • Won't Back Down – Directed by Daniel Barnz


  • Candid – Directed by Vishnu Seesahai – World Premiere
  • Dar He: The Lynching of Emmett Till – Directed by Rob Underhill
  • Elza – Directed by Mariette Monpierre – New York Premiere
  • Four – Directed by Joshua Sanchez
  • Small of Her Back – Directed by Russell Sharman – World Premiere
  • Tunnel Vision – Directed by Delila Vallot – World Premiere
  • The Last Fall – Directed by Matthew Cherry
  • Wolf – Directed by Ya'Ke Smith


  • Benji – Co-Directed by Chike Ozah & Coodie Simmons
  • Doin' It In The Park – Co-Directed by Kevin Couliau & Bobbito Garcia
  • From Fatherless to Fatherhood – Directed by Kobie Brown
  • Getting Up: The Tempt One Story – Directed by Caskey Ebeling – New York Premiere
  • In Our Heads About Our Hair – Directed by Hemamset Angaza
  • Jake Shimabukuro:  Life on 4 Strings – Directed by Tadashi Nakamura – U.S. Premiere
  • Justice for Sale – Co-Directed by Femke van Velzen, Isle van Velzen – New York Premiere
  • Men At Work: Voices from Detroit's Underground Economy – Directed by H. James Gilmore – World Premiere
  • Soul Food Junkies – Directed by Byron Hurt


  • "Advantageous" – Directed by Jennifer Phang
  • "Baby Half Lie" – Directed by Limberly Miller-Price – U.S. Premiere
  • "Barbasol" – Directed by Ralph Scott – World Premiere
  • "Cherry Waves" – Directed by Carey Williams – New York Premiere
  • "Crossover" – Directed by Tina Mabry
  • "Delivery" – Directed by Fabien Ortiz – U.S. Premiere
  • "Docket 32357" – Directed by Randy Wilkens – New York Premiere
  • "El Cocodrillo (The Crocodile)" – Directed by Steve Acevedo – U.S. Premiere
  • "Forever In Hiatus" – Directed by Andy Nguyen – World Premiere
  • "Frisk" – Directed by Tahir Jetter – World Premiere
  • "Grace" – Directed by Salli Richardson-Whitfield – World Premiere
  • "High Card Trumps" – Directed by Geoffrey Quan – World Premiere
  • "I Am John Wayne" – Directed by Christina Choe
  • "Impounded" – Directed by Adam Watson – World Premiere
  • "Junior" – Directed by Jeffrey Elmont – U.S. Premiere
  • "Lock And Key" – Directed by Dana Verde – World Premiere
  • "Lovers" – Directed by Alan Algee – World Premiere
  • "Nani" – Directed by Justin Tipping
  • "Record/Play" – Directed by Jesse Atlas – U.S. Premiere
  • "Sleep" – Directed by Donald Conley
  • "The Bluest Note" – Directed by Marques Green – World Premiere
  • "The Collegians" – Directed by Bryan Lewis – World Premiere
  • "The Last / First Kiss" – Directed by Andrea Ashton – World Premiere
  • "The Truth" – Directed by Hill Harper – World Premiere
  • "White Space" – Directed by Maya Washington – U.S. Premiere


  • Agent 12 & The Messiah Stone – Written by Peter Lord
  • Escaping Bushwick – Written by Javier Ortiz
  • Slang – Written by Deneen Reynolds-Knott
  • The 4th Level – Written by Craig Ross, Jr.
  • The Brooklyn Bubble – Written by T. Tara Turk


  • "Nala's Heart" - Written by Pauline Gray
  • "Loving Luenell" - Written by Kent Faulcon, Chris Simmons, William Lee
  • "There Goes The Neighborhood" - Written by Risa Brown



  • Dori Begley, Senior Vice President of Acquisitions, Magnolia Pictures
  • Nikkole Denson-Randolph, Vice President, Specialty & Alternative Content, AMC Theatres
  • Lisa Cortes, Producer, Cortes Films
  • Rashaad Ernesto Green, Writer/Director, Mi Alma Films
  • James Lopez, Senior Vice President, Production, Screen Gems / Sony Pictures Entertainment


  • Artel Great, Award Winning Filmmaker & Film Historian
  • Nick Hall, Vice President, HBO Entertainment
  • Niija Kuykendall, Vice President of Production, Warner Bros. Pictures
  • Tambay Obenson, Chief Editor, Shadow & Act
  • Frida Torresblanco, Producer, Braven Film


  • Michael Eric Dyson, Author, Professor, & Cultural Critic
  • Jackie Glover, Vice President, Documentary Films, HBO
  • Carleen L. Hsu, Producer, The Kitchen Sync Group, Inc.


  • Franklin Leonard, Vice President, Creative Affairs, Overbrook Entertainment
  • Connie Orlando, Vice President, Original Programming, BET Networks


  • Jacque Edmonds Coffer, Executive Producer, Let's Stay Together, BET
  • Jocelyn Freid, Vice President, Original Programming, BET Networks
  • Erica Montolfo, Executive Producer, The Game, BET

The Urbanworld® Film Festival, founded in 1997 by Stacy Spikes, is the largest internationally competitive festival of its kind. The five-day festival includes narrative features, documentaries, and short films, as well as panel discussions, live staged screenplay readings, and the Urbanworld® Digital track focused on digital and social media.  Over the last fifteen years, Hollywood studios, indie film distributors, and established and emerging filmmakers have consistently chosen Urbanworld® to premiere box office and award-winning hits.  Urbanworld® has also provided a platform for some of today's leading brands seeking to reach key influencers across the industry and within the consumer marketplace.  The Urbanworld® Film Festival is an initiative of the Urbanworld® Foundation Inc., a nonprofit organization that endeavors to consistently manifest its mission of redefining and advancing the roles of multicultural constituents in contemporary filmed entertainment.  By implementing initiatives that actively support and develop content creators of color, Urbanworld significantly contributes to the evolution of the media and entertainment landscape and the diversity that it reflects.  Gabrielle Glore serves as Executive Producer & Head of Programming for the Urbanworld Film Festival.  The festival website is

BET Networks, a subsidiary of Viacom Inc. (NASDAQ: VIA, VIA.B), is the nation's leading provider of quality entertainment, music, news and public affairs television programming for the African-American audience. The primary BET channel reaches more than 90 million households and can be seen in the United States, Canada, the Caribbean, the United Kingdom and sub-Saharan Africa. BET is the dominant African-American consumer brand with a diverse group of business extensions:, a leading Internet destination for Black entertainment, music, culture, and news; CENTRIC, a 24-hour entertainment network targeting the 25- to 54-year-old African-American audience; BET Digital Networks - BET Gospel and BET Hip Hop, attractive alternatives for cutting-edge entertainment tastes; BET Home Entertainment, a collection of BET-branded offerings for the home environment including DVDs and video-on-demand; BET Event Productions, a full-scale event management and production company with festivals and live events spanning the globe; BET Mobile, which provides ringtones, games and video content for wireless devices; and BET International, which operates BET in the United Kingdom and oversees the extension of BET network programming for global distribution.