Michaela Coel, Andra Day to be honored at Outfest Fusion Film Festival


NAACP Image Award Winner Michaela coel and Oscar nominee Andra’s Day will be in the spotlight during the five days of 2021 QTBIPOC Outfest Fusion Film Festival next week.

Coel, best known for creating and starring in “Chewing Gum” and “I can destroy you, ”Will receive the Fusion Achievement Award; Day, star of Lee Daniels’ biopic “United States vs. Billie Holiday”, will receive the James Schamus Ally Award.

“Coel’s work in ‘Chewing Gum’, ‘I May Destroy You’ and others portray complex characters who have helped open the door to more empathetic conversations about the issues facing members of this QTBIPOC community.” , said festival executive director Damien Navarro in a statement.

Former Fusion Achievement Award recipients are Nisha Ganatra, Angela Robinson, Rose Troche, Wilson Cruz, Alec Mapa, Patrik-Ian Polk, Cheryl Dunye, Brickson Diamond and Rikki Beadle-Blair.

“Outfest Fusion believes that paying homage to one of the most incredible, talented and inspiring voices and storytellers of our generation will inspire the black creators of Outfest Fusion, across all mediums, and will also send a strong message within the community. ‘industry that we need to include, support, and fund exponentially more independent voices, ”said Navarro.

Day, who has long supported the LGBTQIA + community, will be recognized as a great ally of the festival for her song “Rise Up”, which has been adopted as an anthem for the struggles and victories of the community, as well as for her interpretation of jazz and swing icon Billie Holiday.

In addition to these winners, Outfest Fusion will also feature a variety of panels and workshops, live and pre-recorded, for filmmakers and the general public, to attend for free starting April 17 at 6 a.m. PT. Outfest Fusion’s Rising Stars panel, hosted by Out magazine editor David Artavia and starring Harvey Guillén (“What We Do in the Shadows”), Shalita Grant (“Search Party”), Vico Ortiz (“ Vida ”), Ian Alexander (“ Star Trek: Discovery ”) and Sherry Cola (“ Good Trouble ”).

Other panels include an AARP fireside chat on longevity in Hollywood’s youth and broadband industry, and a media roundtable on building a post-pandemic “better normal”. The discussion on how to improve the evolving media journalism landscape will be led by Marissa Wallace, Vice President, BPRS-LA and Director of Multicultural Communications, Rogers & Cowan PMK; Stephen Macias, Executive Vice President, Multicultural Marketing and Communications, Rogers & Cowan PMK; Latashia DeVeaux, President, BPRS-LA and Talent Relations Consultant, BET Networks; and freelance writers Valerie Complex and Beandrea July.

See below for a breakdown of the current program and its participants. Additional guests and panels will be announced on the website at a later date.

April 15: 4 p.m. PT | How to Make a Movie on Your Smartphone with Lauren Neal – A Crash Course on How to Make High Quality Short Films Using What You Already Have with Outfest Fusion Film Festival QTBIPOC 2020 One Minute Film Contest Winner .

April 16: 1 p.m. PT | Stretch That Money: Film Budgeting 1010 with Seed & Spark – Learn how to budget, use loans to build your budget, navigate demand, break down your storyline, and get creative with ways to cut costs without sacrificing vision.

April 16: 6 p.m. PT | Outfest Fusion Opening Night Poetry Showcase – A virtual kickoff of poetry led by emcee Féi Hernandez, with appearances by Yosimar Reyes, Tyris Winter, Bella BAHHS and Jade Phoenix.

April 17: 1 p.m. PT | Early Career Networking Session – Hear from established industry members in Cinematography, HMUA, Art and more, about how they got into their field and what it’s like their work on film and television sets, with Barbie Leung (“Hysterical”), Jason Orion (“Moxie”), Marc Kelly (“Summertime”) and Cheyenne Ford (“Shiva Baby”).

April 18: 11 a.m. PT | Aspiration to Breathe Free: LGBTQIA + Immigration and Asylum Seekers – Join the filmmakers of Outfest Fusion 2021 feature films “Nowhere” and “Caught” with experts in the field for a discussion on solving the issues facing immigrants and asylum seekers the perspective of politics, legal protections and mental health in a safe and supportive space.

April 18: 3 p.m. PT | Documentary 101: A Guide to Making Non-Fictional Films with PJ Raval – Raval (“Call Her Ganda”, “Before You Know It”) shares his personal experience in creating powerful documentaries and the resources he used to to convey his ideas to the screen.

April 19: 1 p.m. PT | Crowdfunding to Build Independence with Seed & Spark – Learn how to find and structure your audience for your crowdfunding campaign, as well as choose the right objective, incentives and more.

April 19: 3 p.m. PT | Producing a Podcast with Domino Sound – A useful workshop for podcasting newbies with Kanya Denise and Alexandra di Palma from Domino Sound.

April 20: 6 p.m. PT | How to Create the Perfect Pitch with David Sigurani – Queer Latinx producer and Creative Director David Sigurani will introduce you to all the ingredients needed for an unmistakable movie or TV series pitch. Participants are encouraged to prepare a three minute presentation of their current project for possible comment.

Since its founding in 2004, Outfest Fusion has presented more than 10,000 artwork by and for queer and trans people of color to nearly 250,000 audience members and has reached 2,500 emerging industry members with its workshops, contests and events. Outfest Fusion is also hosting the Outfest InFusion Studio Summit in partnership with Comcast NBCUniversal, which will take place this summer. Participating Outfest Fusion alumni and filmmakers engage with partner studio speakers, participate in panels and workshops, and network with emerging LGBTQIA + filmmakers of color and established studios.

Outfest Fusion 2021 is presented by Comcast NBCUniversal and Hyundai Exclusive Automotive Partner. Major sponsors include AARP, The Fight Magazine, Gilead, LA Times, Rainbow Media Co. and Variety.


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