BROOKLYN, N.Y. The Art of Brooklyn Film Festival (June 4-12) is honored to open our 6th Annual AoBFF with the Brooklyn premiere of the full theatrical version of Spike Lee's new documentary 2 Fists Up: We Gon Be Alright on June 8th at 7pm at St. Francis College's Founders Hall Theater (180 Remsen St, Brooklyn, NY 11201)
2 Fists Up is about the Concerned Student 1950 movement at the University of Missouri, whose efforts led to the resignation of former UM System President Tim Wolfe over racial issues on campus. Capturing a semester of unrest at Mizzou, 2 Fists Up touches on the essential participation of the football team in supporting the student movement. Former Tigers coach Gary Pinkel tweeted a photo of the entire team locking arms in solidarity with hunger striking activist Jonathan Butler, who was calling for Wolfe's resignation. Pinkel said, "I support my players, and a young man's life was on the line. I'm talking guys had tears in their eyes, crying, and asked if I could support them and I said I would ... I didn't look at consequences. That wasn't about it at the time. It was about helping my players and supporting my players when they needed me." Butler is more succinct in his assessment, saying, "I guarantee I wouldn't be alive if the football players didn't step in."
Lee made the documentary in partnership with ESPN Films, as part of a deal to make a series of shorts called "Spike Lee's Lil' Joints." A 22-minute version premiered on ESPN's digital platforms on May 31. A 30-minute version screened at the Tribeca Film Festival last month and Lee has also shared the film with student audiences at Mizzou, Spellman and Yale. But AoBFF will open our sixth annual film festival with the full theatrical version.
"We are ecstatic to be showing the work of a Brooklyn indie film icon, especially since his values correspond so closely with our mission. Like Spike Lee, we are for, by and about Brooklyn—all of it." Joseph Shahadi, Exec Director AoBFF.
The Art of Brooklyn Film Festival is the only international, independent festival in the world exclusively devoted to the Brooklyn indie film scene. We consciously work against the ways that film festivals in the borough support gentrification, by screening in neighborhoods across Brooklyn, including those underserved by cultural institutions.
And it's working: the director Elliot Lester (Nightingale) has called us "Brooklyn's Tribeca."
Please see our site for more information about the schedule of this year's films and to read our international press at www.aobff.org.
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