The 19th annual American Black Film Festival (ABFF) opens with the premier of DOPE, with a Harlem team of co-executive producer Sean “P. Diddy” Combs, musician and actor A$AP Rocky, and the evening will be hosted by living legend Doug E. Fresh.
The premier opens on Thursday, June 11, at the SVA Theatre, 333 West 23rd Street, NYC. With its New York City premiere, Dope is one of the buzziest and most talked about film releases of the 2015 summer season.
ABFF CEO and Founder Jeff Friday says, Dope couldn’t be a more fitting film to open the festival. Film director ’s critically acclaimed film, Dope, has taken a classic genre and told a unique story within it, combining all the elements that make a great film-‐-‐outstanding writing, directing, cast and music. Our audience will truly enjoy the journey,” The mission of the ABFF is to promote quality Black films to a wide range of audiences, and to encourage investment and artistic collaboration.
“We are excited to continue enhancing our ongoing partnership with the American Black Film Festival by sponsoring this year’s Opening Night Film. I would like to give a big thank-‐you to our good friends at Open Road Films for collaborating with us to bring their fantastic film, Dope, to the festival audience. Having a film of this caliber, as well as exclusive previews from the MPAA’s member studios’ upcoming slate of films, will ensure a wonderful experience for all those in attendance,” says MPAA CEO and Chairman Senator Chris Dodd.
Dope is a coming-‐of-‐age comedy/drama for the post hip-‐hop generation; its main characters are obsessed with ‘90s hip-‐hop. Malcolm (Shameik Moore) is warily surviving life in The Bottoms in Los Angeles, while juggling college applications, academic interviews and SATs. His dream is to attend Harvard. A chance invitation to an underground party leads him into a gritty adventure filled with offbeat characters and bad choices that could allow him to go from being a geek to being dope to ultimately being himself. Open Road Films will release the film nationwide on June 19, 2015.
Other Dope stars include Shameik Moore, Tony Revolori, Kiersey Clemons, Blake Anderson, Zoë Kravitz, Chanel Iman and Quincy Brown and is produced by Forest Whitaker and Nina Yang Bongiovi (Fruitvale Station). Pharrell Williams, Michael Y. Chow (Fruitvale Station), Rick Famuyiwa (The Wood, Brown Sugar) and David Lonner are executive producers. Sean “P. Diddy” Combs is co-‐executive producer, and Mimi Valdes and Caron Veazy are co-‐producers. Also, Oscar-nominated actress Taraji P. Henson, has been selected as the 2015 American Black Film Festival’s (ABFF) celebrity ambassador.
Following the screening, the ABFF will host an old-‐school hip-‐hop after-‐party to celebrate Dope at Stage 48, 605 West 48th Street, NYC. The evening will be hosted by the legendary Harlem’s Doug E. Fresh and perfectly mixed sounds provided by former Boogie Down Productions member DJ D-‐Nice. There will be special performances by iconic hip-‐ hop artists throughout the party. Dope will also have an encore screening during the festival on Sunday, June 14, at the AMC Empire 25 Theatre on 42nd Street in New York City.
To learn more about the American Black Film Festival, visit www.abff.com. Follow @ABFF on Twitter and @AmericanBlackFilmFestival on Instagram.
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