Hamilton Black Film Festival (HBFF) will celebrate the City’s unique diversity, from May 28 to 30, virtually at the Westdale Theatre. HBFF will feature films by, for, and about the BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Colour) communities. In an interview with 905 news, HBFF founder, filmmaker and writer, Paize Usiosefe, shares more about the festival purpose in creating a platform for marginalized voices in the Hamilton community, and beyond.
Q) Can you tell us about why you decided to start a festival that specialized in BIPOC?
A) It happened just after I came back from TIFF after serving as a Hamilton delegate in 2019, and I was thinking about a new artistic journey. I became aware that there was a void in representations for BIPOC filmmakers, here in Hamilton.
Q) Is there any particular goal that you want to achieve through the Hamilton Black Film Festival?
A) The Hamilton Black Film Festival’s core value is inclusiveness, bringing our diversified culture together,through films, and opening the door for all filmmakers to be inclusive.
Q)Is cultural diversity more important today than ever?
A) Cultural diversity is always an important issue. “We are all in all of us,” somehow, we have to understand that.
A) How will HBFF help Hamilton’s BIPOC community ?
Q) The Hamilton Black Film Festival will help the BIPOC community by giving hope to those in the film industry, knowing that they have a platform to showcase their films annually.
A) Do you think that HBFF can inspire future generations of local filmmakers? How?
Q) Yes, HBFF will inspire future generations, knowing that they have access points to express their creativities in film, and receive support from their communities.
Q) Which films are you most excited about?
A) I’m excited about all the films curated for our 2021 festival
Q) The HBFF will run virtually: What kinds of challenges does this pose?
A) Yes, we are going virtually on Eventive.org. This experience is new to me, but we have confidence that Eventive.org is equipped for, and capable of running the festival smoothly.
Q) The Hamilton Black Film Festival is a not-for-profit organization. Are there any future plans to expand & take the festival to the next level?
A) We are not for profit organization. Our major goal is to have the festival run every year, and the only way that we could achieve this is by appealing to corporations for sponsorship. We do, and sincerely need the city of Hamilton to commit to our yearly festival, financially. So, we need the city, corporate sponsors and people of goodwill, to donate to our causes and with that, we can take our festival to new heights.
Q) Do you have any particular last message that you would like to share with the public ?
Special thanks to the city of Hamilton and beyond, we can make the world a beautiful place when we realize that “We are all in all of us”.