Seattle film lovers eagerly wait for the rapidly approaching spring film festival season. Perhaps the first natural thought is to look forward to the Seattle International Film Festival, but in the meantime there are many stellar, smaller fests, lending voice to groups that have traditionally been underrepresented in cinema. The Langston Hughes African American Film Festival (LHAAF) is an annual event, providing provocative films from independent Black filmmakers and works about the African American experience. The festival’s mission is to “support community building by providing opportunities for artists and audiences to connect using the medium of film as a catalyst for dialogue that leads to social change. LHAAF creates year-round opportunities to enhance media literacy, self-reflection and community discussion.”
This weekend will close out nine days of the bevy of films and events that make up the 10th Anniversary festival, but it’s not too late to be a part of history; for the first time all events are hosted at Seattle’s newly renovated center for the Langston Hughes Performing Arts Institute (LHPAI). There are still three full days of films, panels and parties ahead including the festival’s Closing Night Reception on April 21, which includes the Seattle Premiere of In the Hive, directed by Robert Townsend and penned by local Seattle writer, Cheryl L. West.
The LPHAI has a forty year-legacy in the Seattle arts community and is currently managed by the City of Seattle. LHPAI was recently transferred to the operations of the Office of Arts & Cultural Affairs, despite some debate. The Mayor’s Office of Seattle pushed for the transfer from the Seattle Parks Department in order to better support artists living, working and growing in Seattle. “Langston Hughes is a valuable arts and community resource for the Seattle community,” said Mayor Mike McGinn of the plan to further invest in the Institute.
Learn more about the Langston Hughes African American Film Festival
- ‘The Brother from Another Planet’ launches 10th Langston Hughes film fest – Seattle Times
- Starting Tomorrow: The Langston Hughes African American Film Festival – SLOG
Learn more about changes to the Langston Hughes Performing Arts Institute