Tag Archives: 12 years a slave

Brash Young Turks & Race @ The Film Boutique: June 2016

31.05.16

I hope you have your tickets for the great line-up of films we have coming up in June at the UK’s No.1 and longest running exhibition platform of urban/black films.

This May we celebrated 18 years of leading the way in creating a platform for black filmmakers. Over the last 18 years we have worked on over 200+ films and organised marketing and PR campaigns for major film releases like: Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, Crash, Freedomland, Ong Bak, Red Tails, The Story of Lovers Rock, Ghett A’ Life, The Butler, Black Nativity, 12 Years A Slave, Half of a Yellow Sun, Starred Up, Fruitvale Station, The Maze Runner, Gone Too Far, Selma, Chris Rock’s Top Five and many other home entertainment titles.

Yep it was us, that set the path for others to follow in the field of film exhibition of urban/black films, but none other has done what we have done by moving into the mainstream and getting paid by mainstream films distributors to screen and market the very said films we choose to champion on our own at the outset of our long journey.

We all owe Kush CEO Marlon Palmer a debt of gratitude, for his vision and tenacity in realising this dream, a dream he still continues to fight for today; as not a lot has changed since 1998.

We could not have got where we are today without our supporters and we salute them for their long-standing support and the friendships we have built up over the years!

So right; what do we have for you in June, well we have a new British urban action-drama by filmmaker Naeem Mahmood and following the film ‘Race‘ which is the epic story of athletics NAEEM-MAHMOOD-DIRECTORlegend Jesse Owens who single-handedly slapped down the delusional dictator & mass-murderer Adolf Hitler at the 1936 Olympics (see here for more info on Race).

Make sure you get your tickets and come on down and support these great films with your ‘bum‘ on a seat at the lovely Regent Street Cinema, the heart of film land London.

Tickets to all screenings is £15 (students: £11)
BOOK HERE: https://www.regentstreetcinema.com/programme/brash-young-turks/

Also see here for trailers etc & more info:
http://www.kushfilms.com/events/the-kush-film-boutique-april-june-2016/


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June 2016 at the Kush Film Boutique

We present a special exclusive screening of the new hyper-stylized action-drama that appeals to all with the story revolving around a tale of friendship, love and adulthood.

Brash Young Turks which will be attended by the director Naeem Mahmood, writer Paul Danquah and stars Paul Chiedozie and Melissa Latouche.


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BOOK HERE: https://www.regentstreetcinema.com/programme/brash-young-turks/

Special Guest Performance by hot new artiste
Dere-Marie
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Our home for all screenings:
The Regent Street Cinema
309 Regent Street,
London, W1B 2UW
Tel: 0207 911 5050


 

 

Kush Films
E: info@kushfilms.com
Tel: 0203 070 3200
@KushFilmsOnline
@Kush_Online
FB: KushFilms

Kush Marketing ‘Selma’ which hits UK Cinemas 6th Feb

Selma: the Oscar nominated film (best Picture) is coming to the UK, and we are pleased to say once again Kush Promotions & PR the UK’s N0 1 Marketing/PR & Film Exhibition specialists have been called upon once again to support this release and bring it to the urban/black public of the UK.

After last year (2014 in case you’re still dizzy from Christmas), who would have thought things would carry on in this mode?

To explain last year was crazy and went by in a blur but there was a dawning upon Kush (all aspects of the business) and it was like been in a chauffeur driven car where you are just been taken where you want to go and given what you need and all you have got to do is do what you do best by doing what you love to do!

Last year we were called to work on: 12 Years A Slave, Starred Up, Half A Yellow Sun, Fruitvale Station, Gone Too Far & The Maze Runner – it was non-stop 4-week campaign marketing all last year – wow!

The year went by so quickly and now we are here in January 2015 and back with another sensational new lauded film – one that again lifts up the spirit and reminds us of what we are still fighting for each day as minorities here in the UK and also in the united states.

I hope you appreciate SELMA as I do and you also totally appreciate the rising director Ava DuVernay and the talent of Nigerian-British actor David Oyelowo – his performance as Dr. Martin Luther King is phenomenal!

Marlon Palmer (Kush Promotions & PR Director)


In spring of 1965, a series of dramatic events changed the course of America and the modern concept of civil rights forever — as courageous marchers, led by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., attempted three times to carry out a peaceful procession from Selma, Alabama to Montgomery, Alabama on a quest for the basic human right to vote. The shocking confrontations, the triumphant final march and the passage of the 1965 Voting Rights Act that followed are now an indelible part of history. But the vitally relevant, vitally human story of Selma – from the political battles in the halls of power to the grit and faith of people on the street to the private, inner struggles Dr. King faced – has never been seen on the movie screen until now.

Starring: David Oyelowo, Carmen Ejogo, Tom Wilkinson, Tim Roth, Oprah Winfrey, Common, Wendell Pierce, Tessa Thompson & Cuba Gooding Jnr
Distributor: Pathe UK

Released: Friday 6th February 2015

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Film Review: Belle

Written by Leslie Byron Pitt
26/05/14

 

 

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Released after the trail blazed by the searing 12 Years a Slave (2013), Belle is a film that owes more to the likes of Pride and Prejudice (2005) and Lincoln (2012) than Steve McQueen’s slave drama. Inspired by the 1779 painting of Dido Elizabeth Belle, the film tackles Dido’s societal standing within her family as an illegitimate mixed-race woman in the age of British slavery. Her relationship with an idealistic vicar’s lawyer son (Sam Reid), helps shape the views of her uncle (Tom Wilkinson), whose role of Lord Chief Justice may bring around the end of slavery in England.

Despite seeming at first worlds away from Amma Asante’s 2004 debut, A Way of Life, Belle delves into the idea of race as a restrictive societal construct. The film often lands Dido as a woman permanently stuck between two worlds, with her education and standing consistently at odds with her mixed-race heritage, and some (including a particularly insidious role by Tom Felton) not valuing any of her attributes at all.

Once again, Asante appears quite deft at showing women who are enclosed by suffocating circumstance and a society who cannot see past anything but the superficial. Scenes in which we notice Dido not being allowed to sit at the table when the family host dinner guests are played off against moments in which she display those talents she clearly holds. Much of the film’s strength stems from the fact that despite being a daughter of a slave, she excels within the opportunities that are given to her by her father’s higher class.

Dido’s home life runs parallel to her uncle’s role in the 1781 Zong Massacre, an actual event in which an African crew of 142 slaves were killed in a claim for insurance. The film balances the narrative’s issues well, with Asante confidently illustrating how the 1783 trial influences Dido and her sense of identity, and how she then in turn influences the trial.

095_Belle_ScreenGrab_039.JPGAn early American review stated that the film seemed too hesitant with the racism of the times, a statement that suggest that when it comes to such prejudice, we must only speak in obvious and belligerent tongues. As a fictional account of real-life event, Asante manages to inform viewers of the type of racism that we still witness now, with the lives of black people measured only in the value they can bring to white economics. The boat of slaves is looked at dispassionately as cargo, yet Dido’s very being, subtly counter-argues the situation from behind the scenes. The film may trail in the shadow of 12 Years a Slave but it deals with a similar message without the need of overt slurs, which is something that is often overlooked when considering conversations of race.

It is areas like this in which Belle as a film excels, evidence of Asante maturing greatly from when she first appeared on the directorial scene ten years ago. Her use of music is much more appropriate for each scene; a family sequence – involving who is asking for Dido’s and her cousin Elizabeth’s (Sarah Gadon) hand – is confidently edited in a way that shows just how assured Asante has become. The film perhaps unknowingly mirrors aspects of the director’s career in terms of visibility, however; the lengthy period of time between her critically-successful debut and Belle poses the question often asked about women and ethnic minorities working behind the camera. Belle shows both on- and off-screen that the talent is there if the opportunity is given, with Asante’s (uncredited) writing and direction giving the film a warmth that one rarely finds in similar period pieces that hold a too stuffy and mannered poise about themselves.

While the film may not hold the same amount of production costs as the likes of Joe Wright’s Pride and Prejudice, the film is confidently captured in its cinematography and costume design. The film also holds a solid cast with the likes of Tom Wilkinson and Emily Watson providing sturdy support for the doe-eyed yet dauntless lead performance from Gugu Mbatha-Raw whose chemistry with both Sarah Gadon and Reid, is naturalistic and affectionate. The success of Belle is that, like Pride and Prejudice, it is a film that confidently places intelligent women (both on and off screen) in the forefront. However Belle holds more to it than its romance. A character suggests that “Love is a complicated thing”. So is race relations, and Belle handles both well.

Leslie Byron Pitt

 

Belle is released in cinemas on June 13th
Watch the trailer here

 

 

Lupita and Idris to unite on screen?

 

Written by Lee Pinkerton
29/04/14

 

It just keeps getting better and better for Lupita Nyong’o . With her movie career barely out of nappies, Lupita seems to have turned conventional show-biz wisdom on its head. Until her arrival we know that there were very few roles for Black actresses, and those who did make it through tended to be of the light-skinned or mixed-race variety like Halle Berry or Paula Patton.

But with her supersonic rise to stardom, the Mexican-born, Kenyan actress has Hollywood and the fashion world completely enthralled and shows no sign of slowing down.  Her breakthrough role was in the Oscar winning 12 Years a Slave, with she herself going onto win Best Supporting Actress Oscar for her starring role as Patsey in Steve McQueen’s epic.

Lupita red carpet

During the awards season she commanded more than 65 red carpets from September through March and became the darling of designers everywhere as she effortlessly pulled off Prada to Dior. Nyong’o, 31, has consolidated her foray into fashion by landing a coveted contract with Lancôme Paris, joining Julia Roberts, Penélope Cruz and Kate Winslet as a celeb ambassador for the brand. And last week People Magazine named her as the Most Beautiful Woman on the Planet.

Lupita-People-MagazineTo be touted as beautiful is not lost on the actress, who for years thought she didn’t fit the Hollywood mould.

“Beauty was what I saw on television, you know, light skin and long, flowing, straight hair,” she says. “Subconsciously you start to appreciate those things more than what you possess.”

You would think it could get no better – but yes it has.  It is now rumoured that Lupita will be starring opposite every woman’s favourite Idris Elba in a new movie adaptation of  The Jungle Book.

According to The Hollywood Reporter the 12 Years A Slave actress is in ‘final negotiations’ to play the role of Rakcha,  the mother wolf who adopts the as yet uncast Mowgli.  Shere Khan, the man-eating tiger who will be voiced by Elba.

idris-elbaDisney is behind the latest adaptation of the Rudyard Kipling fairytale, which will be directed by Jon Favreau and blend live action with CGI.

The meteoric rise of Lupita reminds me of one of my favourite sayings.

“Those who say it can’t be done, should keep out of the way of those busy doing it.”

Lee Pinkerton

 

 

Kush Leads The Way in Black Film Renaissance


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 PRESS RELEASE

Black British Media companies unite to promote Chiwetel Ejiofor’s new film  Half Of A Yellow Sun!

 Kush Promotions, the leading Marketing/PR & Film Exhibition specialist of urban/black films in the UK, is proud to present another massive movie event!

So far in 2014 we have worked on the marketing campaign for the Academy Award Winning ‘12 Years A Slave’. We are also currently handling specialist urban marketing for the acclaimed gritty British prison drama “Starred Up”.And now Kush is proud to be working on Chiwetel Ejiofor’s follow-up film  Half Of A Yellow Sun on behalf of distributor Soda Pictures to be released in the UK on 11 April

Half of A Yellow Sun is the sensational new epic film directed by Nigerian playwright  Biyi Bandele based on the best-selling Orange Prize-winning novel of the same name by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

With BAFTA winners Thandie Newton and Chiwetel Ejiofor leading the cast.

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To herald the launch we are hosting a star-studded a premier of the movie at the Streatham Odeon in London on 8th April with cast members in attendance.

John Boyega

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20th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards Presentation

To gain maximum exposure throughout all media outlets Kush is pleased to be collaborating with Black-owned media partners Colourful Radio and cable TV station Vox Africa (Sky 218).

“In the past many Black media outlets have felt that they have been left out of film companies’ marketing budgets” which is often expressed to Kush Director Marlon Palmer. “With 16 years of experience in creating a platform for Black filmmakers, Kush are leading the way in bringing Black media together in the marketing exhibition and distribution of Black film in the UK.”

Expect many more exciting movie and media events from Kush to follow in 2014.


Media Partners:  

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for more info on the film click on this link to view our other pages

12 Years A Slave – audience reactions

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Here is a selection of audience reactions after seeing what some have described as one of the most important movies of the century so far – 12 Years A Slave.

“In my opinion it is a well put together film that covers most of the aspects of the enslavement period, i.e. house, yard and field enslaved African, the good slave master and bad slave master, the transportation, the brutality, the rape, the murder etc. There were also subtle messages played out in the movie and you would have to be in tuned with what is happening in the world today to make those connections.

Because I have studied Trans Atlantic Enslavement and also teach it, the above mentioned aspects of the film we’re very clear and easily recognisable to me, and while the audience were in-tune with the blatant brutality etc, the more subtle aspects I believe went over many of their heads.

To rate this movie I would give it a  8.5 out of 10.”

Mark Simpson

 

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“Film director Steve McQueen has presented such a multi-layer cinematic view of Solomon Northup’s ’12 Years A Slave’ book, that I found myself on second viewing of the film to be overwhelmed with the more subtle touches on show. These were features that were always there to be discovered, but with the sheer terror, violence, and overall inhuman behaviour meted out to Northup and other slaves, such shocking and heart wrenching images dominated one’s thoughts during the first time of watching this film.

A second trip to McQueen’s movie allowed me to fully appreciate the eye-catching quality he brought, the same visual strength that made his name as a world renowned artist with his short film pieces. Using the screen as a canvas, there were shots throughout which resembled a still photograph or indeed a painting. He would leave the camera still and have the characters on screen move very little. One wonderful image was of actor Chiwetel Ejiofor as Northup standing in a plantation field, alongside several other male slaves of different ages, both young and old. Instead of quick cutting to close ups, he allows the camera to linger and have the audience take it all in, fully understanding that saying “a picture is worth a thousand words”.

Another aspect that struck me was inamongst the savage brutality that was the foreground of the story, we were presented with the absolutely beautiful and gorgeous setting of the American south as its backdrop. Shot and photographed in stunning clarity, it served to compound my inner thoughts as I witnessed human beings being destroyed in such attractive surroundings. This was brought to bear with the scene in which Northup, while on a journey for his master comes across some white men just about to lynch two slaves from trees. The most telling moment comes when after being told to continue on his journey, McQueen chooses to show the hanging in the background as Northup goes on his way, never looking back. The slow determined pace of the film allowed all of the characters to communicate strongly with the audience without words. The mere gestures and facial expressions told their stories even louder the second time around. An outstanding effort which needs to be seen more than once by everybody.

Blessings to you sir!  Keep up the great work!!”

Mr. Eon Irving

 

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“I’m really feeling the need to express great concern when we as black people are made to feel that these type of films are great!

Surely we (our ancestors) have been there done it and got the t-shirt! We want to see and hear inspirational films now! Not nigga this, nigga that, white man doing this to us, doing that to us!

I’m finding it quite difficult to understand why all of a sudden these types of films are being made recently, and am sure it’s trying to stir up hatred in us again and even more as they want to label us as savage.

How can we as a nation move on with these types of movies, The Butler, 12 Years Slaves- I dislike them so much- lets move on, please!

I have friends who went to see this awful film who had to walk out! When we go to the cinema it’s so supposed to  fill us with joy and happiness – watch the people’s faces – solemn, unhappy, sad – wow – come on – even if based on a true story – read it! I feel so angry – why would a black person produce this type of film.

I hate it with a passion !

Give us inspirational films- make a film like “Black Heroes in the Hall of Fame” – come on! Let us wake up as a nation. We are such caring, loving people!”

Mandy DaCosta 

 

To read Kush’s take on the film click here

 

 

The Oscars – Kush Looks back

Written by Lamar Fergus-Palmer
12.03.14

The Oscars has long been the ‘centre piece’ of the awards season. Millions tune in from all over the world to watch the spectacle, and 2014 did not disappoint. Films are often judged and promoted based on how many nominations/wins they’ve received, so the evening itself is always full of shocks, surprises, emotion, and a huge amount of press.

The 2014 Oscars had arguably more talking points than the other Oscars in years gone by, and it was without a doubt the most talked about award show in recent memory. With that in mind, at Kush Films, we will take a look at the highlights of the 86th Academy Awards.

12 Years A Slave Wins Best Film
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Regardless of what happened, it only seems right to start with what will now be considered the best film of 2013/14 as the winner of both the BAFTA and Oscar for the Best Picture 12 Years A Slave.

Directed by 44 year old, British Steve McQueen, some thought that 12 Years A Slave may finish behind Gravity in the running, as it has taken almost seven times as much money at the box office. However, it was 12 Years A Slave that prevailed much to the delight of a star-studded producer and cast list, which included; Brad Pitt, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Michael Fassbender, Benedict Cumberbatch and Lupita Nyong’o.

McQueen, who gave the acceptance speech, dedicated the award win to all those who suffered and still suffer slavery today. He said, “everyone deserves not just to survive, but to live,” in a very moving speech that eventually saw him jump into the arms of his cast and crew to celebrate.

Lupita Nyong’o wins best supporting actress for role in 12 Years a Slave
Nyong'o, best supporting actress winner for her role in "12 Years a Slave", racts on stage at the 86th Academy Awards in Hollywood

Following on from the above, Lupita Nyong’o took the Oscar for best supporting actress beating out strong competition, most notably from Jennifer Lawrence (American Hustle). The Mexican born Kenyan had previously won 23 of the 31 ‘major’ awards she had been nominated for in her very first feature film role on 12 Years a Slave.

Lupita Nyong’o took the time to thank the real-life slave who guided her to shape her moving performance as Patsy, and she also thanked Steve McQueen, and fellow cast members, Chiwetel Ejiofor and Michael Fassbender. She closed with the line “No matter where you’re from, your dreams are valid.”

Gravity picks up seven academy awards

While the team involved with Gravity would have been disappointed that they did not pick up what could arguably be considered as the biggest awards, the movie did win the most awards of any film of the night, seven in total, including:

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Best Director – Alfonoso Cuaron

Achievement in Visual Effects

Achievement in Sound Mixing

Achievement in Cinematography

Achievement in Sound Editing

Achievement in Film Editing

Best Original Score

With seven Academy Award wins on the night Gravity now sits alongside other films like; Schindler’s List, Shakespeare in Love and Lawrence of Arabia who have also all won seven Oscars.

Dallas Buyers Club wins both major male awards

Dallas Buyers Club also had a night to remember, as it picked up the two main male awards; Matthew McConaughey won best actor, and Jared Leto picked up the award for best supporting actor.

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Both winners gave emotional speeches with McConaughey thanking his father, who passed away when he was just 23 years old and Leto, who praised those who had died from AIDS, as his character in Dallas Buyers Club had the condition.

The other antics
The Oscars are known just as much for the red carpet, presenting and skits as it is the awards now, and this year’s 43 million viewers (the most in a decade) were not disappointed with the entertainment.

The historical selfie that almost broke Twitter
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When Ellen Degeneres (the host) decided that it would be a good time to take, and post a selfie of her and several of Hollywood’s elite, including; Jennifer Lawrence, Kevin Spacey, Julia Roberts and Brad Pitt she probably didn’t realise just how popular the post would be.

Until that post on her account, Barack Obama’s Victory Photo was the most re-tweeted tweet ever with over 750,000 retweets. In just a few hours the Ellen selfie surpassed one million, then two and now sits on 3.3 million re-tweets.

Jennifer Lawrence falls over again
After falling over on the way up the stairs to pick up her 2013 best actress Oscar, Jennifer Lawrence was hoping that 2014 wouldn’t bring the same fate. Well, while she avoided an on-stage fall, she did stumble on the red carpet, and it was caught by camera, much to her disappointment.

Leonardo Di Caprio – the man overlooked
With five personal Academy Award nominations and no wins, Leonardo Di Caprio (Wolf of Wall Street) put on a brave face as the best actor award was handed over to Matthew McConaughey. Of course, Twitter blew up with memes and statuses about how Di Caprio would seemingly never win a best actor Academy Award.

While he might have some way to go to overtake the late Peter O’Toole, who was nominated for best actor eight times without winning, those on social media did have some light-hearted fun with Di Caprio’s loss.

The pizza delivery guyellen-degeneres-serves-pizzWhen Ellen says she’s ordering pizza you better expect a few large boxes to turn up, regardless of the timing. Delivering the pizzas to some of Hollywood’s elite, Edgar Martirosyan, who WAS a real deliveryman from a local pizza establishment, seemingly had no idea that he would be delivering to some of the biggest stars in the world.

Martirosyan hand delivered the pizza to stars, including; Harrison Ford, Brad Pitt, Jared Leto and many others before making his way back to work, sans tip. Ellen collected for him and then gave him $1,000 the next day on her show. What a night for Edgar Martirosyan and Big Mama’s & Papa’s Pizzeria that experts say received up to $10,000,000 worth of free advertising because of their appearance.

The 2014 Oscars was action packed to say the least. Congratulations to all the winners, especially 12 Years a Slave, Steve McQueen and Lupita Nyong’o and commiserations to the runners up, as they say the show goes on – hopefully the line-up of films for the 2015 Academy Awards will be just as great as those in 2014.

© Kushfilms.com 2014

12 Years A Slave on the March towards the Oscars

By Marlon Palmer
21 February 2014

The_Bafta_Film_AwardsFacesTo say that 12 years a slave was one of the success stories of the recent BAFTA awards would be an understatement. Nominated for ten of the major awards, the film won arguably the two most competitive; best picture and best actor, awarded to a jubilant Chiwetel Ejiofor.

The BAFTAs was once again a star-studded event with world-famous actors and actresses lining the red carpet. Names like; Angelina Jollie, Brad Pitt, Michael Fassbender, Leonardo DiCaprio and arguably the most famous of them all, the President of the British Academy of Film and Television Arts, Prince William turned out for another memorable evening.

With the nominations released back in early January people had been speculating for a little over a month about what films they thought would win the major awards. With 11 nominations, Gravity, staring George Clooney and Sandra Bullock, who missed the awards as she was looking after her ill three-year-old son, was expected to clean up, and with six BAFTAs to its name by the end of the night that was the case.

American Hustle with arguably the most household names in the same film received ten Barkhad Abdinominations and three awards in what many would consider a good night, taking into account the competition. Unfortunately, for the cast and crew, critically acclaimed Captain Philips starring Tom Hanks, which had received nine nominations, picked up just the one award; best supporting actor, which was awarded to Somalian new-comer Barkhad Abdi.

 


A night that belonged to 12 Years a Slave

bafta awardsWhile 12 Years a Slave picked up one less award than American Hustle, many film critics believe that it had a more successful night. The film, which has also been nominated for nine Academy Awards, had been named film of the year by a number of the biggest critics in the British media.

However, quite possibly the most prestigious award Best Picture still came as a shock to the majority of people involved with 12 Years a Slave as Gravity, which broke box-office records, was almost expected to win.

As well as best picture, 12 Years A Slave star 36-year-old Chiwetel Ejiofor from Forest Gate won best actor over stiff competition in the form of Leonardo DiCaprio for The Wolf of Wall Street, Tom Hanks for Captain Phillips and Christian Bale for American Hustle.

12 Years a Slave was also nominated for the following acting and directing awards, best:

  •      Supporting actor (Michael Fassbender)
  •      Director (Steve McQueen)
  •      Supporting actress (Lupita Nyong’o)

12 Years a Slave was undoubtedly one of the biggest success stories of the BAFTAs. With the black historical theme of the film; black director Steve McQueen directing, and a number of very talented black actors in the main leading roles its surprising this film hasn’t been categorised as a black or urban film, as so often happens with other films with that make up of cast and crew conveying the black life experience. 12 YAS could now potentially go on and win a few Oscars.

At Kush Promotions, we are proud of the role that we played in the marketing campaign of a hugely successful film, a film which once again bought back vivid memories of the horrors and inhumane treatment of one branch of the human family, which should never been forgotten and should be once again use to highlight the continued present day trafficking of human life.

12 Years A Slave is still in selected cinemas – go see it if you haven’t!

Hey; spread the word: Kush hopes to confirm soon that we will be working on a new major black film based on an award winning Nigerian book that will be released in the UK entitled “Half of A Yellow HOAYS_Intl_QuadC_Awards_v5BSun” starring Chiwetel Ejiofor, Thandie Newton and John Boyega (young star of UK urban film “Attack The Block”), this film will be coming to cinemas soon in March 2014.

Oh don’t forget to go see new comedy “Ride Along” starring my favourite comedian Kevin Hart and fellow star Ice Cube in cinemas on general release starting next weekend Friday 28th February.

 

Barkhad Abdi wins Best Supporting Actor at the BAFTAs

Director Steve McQueen & 12 Years a Slave wins Best Film BAFTA

BAFTA Highlights

Two Winners at Producers Guild Association (PGA) – ‘Gravity’ & ’12 Years a Slave’

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First tie in PGA history

“Gravity” and “12 Years a Slave” have wound up in a dead heat as both won the Producers Guild of America’s Darryl F. Zanuck Award for top feature film — the first tie in the PGA’s 25-year history for the trophy.

Ben Affleck announced the awards Sunday night at the Beverly Hilton back-to-back — first to “Gravity” producers Alfonso Cuaron and David Heyman and then to “12 Years a Slave” producers Anthony Katagas, Jeremy Kleiner, Steve McQueen, Brad Pitt and Dede Gardner.

The PGA, which has 6,000 members, does not reveal its vote totals. The guild uses the preferential balloting system employed for the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences for the Oscars.

Cuaron gave extended thanks and made fun of himself as the director of the cutting-edge space tale — “he can be stubborn, uncompromising.” He also singled out his son and co-writer Jonas Cuaron for energizing him through the film’s lengthy development process.

Brad Pitt said of the searing historical drama “12 Years” represented an opportunity “to contribute brad_pitt_03something to the yearly narrative, to culture, and that is fucking cool.”

An emotional McQueen, who also directed, said, “Thank you so much for opening your hearts and minds to this film.”

The PGA also selected “Frozen” as the top animated film and “We Steal Secrets: The Story of WikiLeaks” as the winner of its documentary prize. “Breaking Bad,” “Modern Family” and “Behind the Candelabra” won the key TV awards with “Modern Family” taking the comedy series trophy for the fourth year in a row.

“Gravity” and “12 Years a Slave” topped what was regarded as a highly competitive field — “American Hustle,” “Blue Jasmine,” “Captain Phillips,” “Dallas Buyers Club,” “Her,” “Nebraska,” “Saving Mr. Banks” and “The Wolf of Wall Street.”

The twin wins spread the wealth for the weekend award winners, which saw “American Hustle” win SAG cast ensemble award while “Dallas Buyers Club” took the two male acting awards and “Blue Jasmine” and “12 Years” won the female acting trophies. A week ago, “12 Years a Slave” won the Golden Globe for best drama and “American Hustle” won for best comedy.

The PGA’s Zanuck award has become a strong indicator of Oscar sentiment in recent years, matching the Oscar for best picture in 17 of its 24 years — including the last six, with “Argo,” “The Artist,” “The King’s Speech,” “The Hurt Locker,” “Slumdog Millionaire” and “No Country for Old Men.” The PGA winner last diverged from the Oscar best picture for the 2006 award when “Little Miss Sunshine” won while the Academy opted for “The Departed.”

Affleck, who won the award last year for “Argo” joked when he revealed that two films had won the Zanuck that it was “a legitimate mathematical numerical tie — but it was the producers who told me so.”

The producers branch of AMPAS constitutes about 8 percent of the AMPAS membership.

“Gravity” has grossed $677 million worldwide for Warner Bros. while Fox Searchlight’s “12 Years” has cumed $53 million.

The next major milestone in this year’s awards race comes Saturday when the Directors Guild of America presents its top feature film award. Both Cuaron and McQueen are up for the award along with Paul Greengrass for “Captain Phillips,” David O. Russell for “American Hustle” and Martin Scorsese for “The Wolf of Wall Street.”

Kevin Spacey received the top laughs of the night with a dead-on impersonation of the late Johnny Carson before presenting “Modern Family” with its trophy. “Of all the awards shows, this is the one to be at because it’s not on TV,” he said.

“We Steal Secrets: The Story of WikiLeaks” tracks the organization founded by Julian Assange, and people involved in the collection and distribution of secret information and media by whistleblowers. Alex Gibney wrote and directed the film, which debuted at Sundance and was released this summer by Focus with a $166,000 gross in the U.S.

Here is the list of PGA winners:

The Darryl F. Zanuck Award for Outstanding Producer of Theatrical Motion Pictures:

“GRAVITY” (Warner Bros. Pictures) Producers: Alfonso Cuarón, David Heyman

“12 YEARS A SLAVE” (Fox Searchlight Pictures); Producers: Anthony Katagas, Jeremy Kleiner, Steve McQueen, Brad Pitt and Dede Gardner

The Award for Outstanding Producer of Animated Theatrical Motion Pictures:

“FROZEN” (Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures); Producer: Peter Del Vecho WINNER

The Award for Outstanding Producer of Documentary Theatrical Motion Pictures:

“WE STEAL SECRETS: THE STORY OF WIKILEAKS” (Focus Features); Producers: Alexis Bloom, Alex Gibney, Marc Shmuger

Television Programs:

The David L. Wolper Award for Outstanding Producer of Long-Form Television:

“BEHIND THE CANDELABRA” (HBO); Producers: Susan Ekins, Gregory Jacobs, Michael Polaire, Jerry Weintraub

The Norman Felton Award for Outstanding Producer of Episodic Television, Drama:

“BREAKING BAD” (AMC); Producers: Melissa Bernstein, Sam Catlin, Bryan Cranston, Vince Gilligan, Peter Gould, Mark Johnson, Stewart Lyons, Michelle MacLaren, George Mastras, Diane Mercer, Thomas Schnauz, Moira Walley-Beckett

The Danny Thomas Award for Outstanding Producer of Episodic Television, Comedy:

“MODERN FAMILY” (ABC); Producers: Paul Corrigan, Abraham Higginbotham, Ben Karlin, Elaine Ko, Steven Levitan, Christopher Lloyd, Jeffrey Morton, Dan O’Shannon, Jeffrey Richman, Chris Smirnoff, Brad Walsh, Bill Wrubel, Danny Zuker

The Award for Outstanding Producer of Non-Fiction Television:

“ANTHONY BOURDAIN: PARTS UNKNOWN” (CNN); Producers: Anthony Bourdain, Christopher Collins, Lydia Tenaglia, Sandra Zweig

The Award for Outstanding Producer of Live Entertainment and Talk Television:

“THE COLBERT REPORT” (Comedy Central); Producers: Meredith Bennett, Stephen T. Colbert, Richard Dahm, Paul Dinello, Barry Julien, Matt Lappin, Emily Lazar, Tanya Michnevich Bracco, Tom Purcell, Jon Stewart

The Award for Outstanding Producer of Competition Television:

“THE VOICE” (NBC); Producers: Stijn Bakkers, Mark Burnett, John de Mol, Chad Hines, Lee Metzger, Audrey Morrissey, Jim Roush, Kyra Thompson, Nicolle Yaron, Mike Yurchuk, Amanda Zucker

The Award for Outstanding Sports Program:

“SPORTSCENTER” (ESPN) WINNER

The Award for Outstanding Children’s Program:

“SESAME STREET” (PBS)

The Award for Outstanding Digital Series:

“WIRED: WHAT’S INSIDE” (http://video.wired.com/series/what-s-inside)

In addition to the competitive awards, the Producers Guild presented special honours to Barbara Broccoli & Michael G. Wilson (David O. Selznick Achievement Award in Theatrical Motion Pictures), Robert Iger (Milestone Award), Peter Jackson & Joe Letteri (Vanguard Award), Chuck Lorre (Norman Lear Achievement Award in Television), Chris Meledandri (Visionary Award) and FRUITVALE STATION (Stanley Kramer Award).

Courtesy Varity.com © 2014
http://variety.com/2014/film/awards/two-winners-at-pga-gravity-and-12-years-a-slave-1201065016/

12 Years A Slave: The Interviews

Lupita Nyong’o (Character: Patsy)

Lupita Nyong’o & Alfre Woodard discuss their roles in 12 Years a Slave (Character: Ms Shaw)

Michael Fassbender Interview (Character: Slave Master Epps)

Brad Pitt talking turning 50 and 12 Years A Slave (Character: Canadian Carpenter liberator)

Steve McQueen ITN Interview (Director)

Chiwetel Ejiofor Interview (Lead Character: Solomon Northfolk)

Benedict Cumberbatch Interview (Character: Slave Master William Ford)

Academy Conversations: “12 Years a Slave”