ruth weiss: One More Step West Is The Sea

Cinematographer

Poppy

Voodoo Macbeth

Now accepting Orders. Available for Public Performance / Exhibition Licensing on January 10, 2023.

Based on the true story of Orson Welles, Rose McClendon and their revolutionary Shakespeare production!

Produced by the University of Southern California School of Cinematic Arts in association with Warner Bros., this 14x Festival Winner tells the dramatic story of when, in 1936, Broadway star Rose McClendon and producer John Houseman convinced a gifted but untested 20-year-old Orson Welles to direct Shakespeare’s Macbeth with an all-Black cast in Harlem.

Set in Haiti, the production first earned the nickname “Haitian Vodou” fulfilling the element of witchcraft contained in the Shakespeare original. It later became more famously known as “Voodoo Macbeth”.

A box office sensation, the production, which toured the nation, was regarded as a landmark theatrical event for its innovative interpretation of the play, its success in promoting African-American theater, and its role in the development of Orson Welles as a new and powerful theatrical force.

It was before Citizen Kane and before War of the Worlds. It was dynamic and included Orson and Rose – who also played Lady Macbeth – clashing over everything from scene blocking to crew hires, while Houseman contended with a congressman hell-bent on shutting down what he deemed to be communist propaganda. In the end, Welles and McClendon overcame the political pressure, personal demons, and protests to realize their groundbreaking vision.

This 2021 film / 2022 theatrical release tells the story how Voodoo Macbeth was conceived and developed. Its dramatic and theatrical style is due, at least in part, to the extensive collaboration that went into the production itself. The large cast, numerous directors, multiple producers and the USC/Warner Bros. relationship results not only in incredible storytelling, but also in a new and exciting style of production itself.

The Volume of Festival Wins to Date Speak Loudly. Here are a few…

WINNER

  • Best Film – Harlem International Film Festival
  • Best Production – Harlem International Film Festival
  • Best Actress – Harlem International Film Festival
  • Best Film – Vail Film Festival
  • Best Director, Charlotte Black Film Festival
  • Best Ensemble Cast – San Diego International Film Festival
  • Director’s Choice Award / Independent Spirit Award – Sedona International Film Festival
  • Best Director – Catalina Film Festival
  • Best U.S. Feature – Catalina Film Festival
  • Best Actress – Catalina Film Festival
  • Best Actor – Catalina Film Festival

“A moving tribute to an indelible slice of history, that is finally being shared and celebrated! One of Orson Welles’ most pivotal moments, right before Citizen Kane, brought beautifully to life. This story was hidden for far too long, along with Rose McClendon’s wonderful legacy. Some say better late than never, but this story should be shouted from the rooftops, uncovering one of America’s hidden jewels, that was always meant to shine!” – Suzanne Marques, CBS Los Angeles.

“Impressive…the film’s production is itself a collaborative effort in the spirit of the Harlem theatre…”– J. Paul Johnson, 25 Years Later.

“This retelling of a very innovative part of theater and African American history is precious.” – Dwight Brown, National Newspaper Publishers Association.

“A fantastic example of team unity as there is never a sense of multiple voices trying to steer this project…with solid production design up and down the line and never a sense of doubt in the story that it is trying to capture.” – Dave Voigt, In The Seats.

“By all odds, my great success in my life was that play, because the opening night there were five blocks in which all traffic was stopped. You couldn’t get near the theatre in Harlem. Everybody who was anybody in the black or white world was there. And when the play ended there were so many curtain calls that finally they left the curtain open, and the audience came up on the stage to congratulate the actors. And that was magical.” – Orson Welles (1982 interview)

BONUS MATERIAL ON THE DISC VERSIONS

  • Audio Commentary
  • Actual 1936 footage from National Archives of the play that toured the country to interracial audiences.

2021 / Drama / 108 minutes / Color / English Language / A film directed by Agazi Desta, Sabina Vajrača, Hannah Bang, Christopher Beaton, Dagmawi Abebe, Victor Alonso-Berbel, Tiffany K. Guillen, Zoë Salnave, Ernesto Sandoval, Roy Arwas, and produced by Xiaoyuan Xiao, Miles Alva , Jason Phillips, John Watson.

HOW TO ORDER:

Public Performance and Digital Site Licenses are available through Soundview Media Partners. To inquire or to place an order, write to info@soundviewmediapartners.com or simply choose from the options below:

License Options

In-home/personal use copies are available on Amazon: https://amzn.to/3fjerzW

WATCH THE TRAILER

Can’t Be Stopped

[DVD w/PPR avail early Dec. 2022 / DSL available now]

The story of “Can’t Be Stopped” (CBS) and the artform they created from the streets of Los Angeles. Can certainly be considered the West Coast follow up to the East Coast’s smash hit STYLE WARS (2005).

A group of teens on the Hollywood streets use their talents as graffiti artists to gain worldwide notoriety and ultimate success.

Narrated by: Everlast (House of Pain)

Hollywood’s own “Can’t Be Stopped” crew is one of the most influential and recognizable graffiti crews to emerge out of the U.S. since its inception in the early 1980’s, the initials C.B.S. have been at the forefront of evolving graffiti art into a true, authentic art form.

The kinship forged by father figure “Skate” creates a bond of brotherhood, a surrogate family protecting these artists from the temptations of the Hollywood streets, imprinting upon them an unrivaled standard of morality, respect and integrity in graffiti. Skate’s tutelage becomes their lore and mantra, the driving force as these boys come of age, many from broken homes, into their ultimate success and prosperity. Unbeknownst to these young artists, they were shaping the medium and ultimately became pioneers. Their notoriety and acclaim was a transcending factor that evolved this contemporary art form, transcending the stigmas attached to this subculture.

Through interviews, the story of Hollywood’s “Can’t Be Stopped” crew is told. Father figure “Skate” mentors a group of boys, raising them from broken homes and forming a surrogate family. Under his tutelage, these boys come of age as he protects them from the Hollywood streets, mentoring them in standards of morality, respect and integrity in their art. The CBS crew grow in notoriety and acclaim, transcending this contemporary art form, breaking the stigma and stereotypes associated with graffiti.

Features artist interviews including Mear, Risky, Greg ‘Graola’ Simkins, Mickey Avalon, Andre Legacy, Existereo (Shape Shifters), Rakaa Iriscience (Dilated Peoples), Shifty (Crazy Town/Celebrity Rehab).

2022 / Documentary / 72 minutes / English / a film by Cody Smith

HOW TO ORDER:

Public Performance and Digital Site Licenses are available through Soundview Media Partners. To inquire or to place an order, write to info@soundviewmediapartners.com or simply choose from the options below:

License Options

For group screening prices, please inquire.

In-home/personal use copies are available on Amazon: https://amzn.to/3y7s7Eu

WATCH THE TRAILER

Rain (90th Anniversary Edition)

Invisible Imprints

A troupe of spoken-word poets and modern dancers travel the Great Migration Trail with an original piece called Invisible Imprints of Racism.

This powerful documentary feature follows a troupe of twelve Boston-based spoken-word poets and modern dancers as they travel the Great Migration Trail from Jackson, Mississippi to Chicago, performing an original piece called Invisible: Imprints of Racism.

“Powerful dance explores issues of race…” — Sophie Flack, Boston Globe

After each performance, a talk-back with the audience gives space to the communal exploration of racial issues and the sharing of firsthand experiences with and reflections on racism, also yielding reactions to the performance itself.

As these dramatic moments unfold on the tour, the performers’ own struggles with race and identity, off-stage, are also explored, lending a deeper context.

A refreshingly humanizing, critical conversation emerges on the emotional challenges of overcoming racism in America.

“Invisible Imprints literally changed me.” — Sally Morgan, Critics Corner

“An earnest, authentic exploration of race in America” — Karl Hench, Long Island Film Critic

Produced by racially diverse artist collective BeHeard.World: Beheard.world is a racially diverse collective of performing artists, filmmakers, and educators. They create documentary films, live performances and workshops to engage a wide variety of communities in conversations that elevate people to advance social justice.

Featuring music from Grammy nominee Andrew Bird

  • Award-Winner – Best Short of the Season, IndieX Film Festival
  • Award-Winner – LA Sun Film Festival
  • Official Selection – Socially Relevant Film Festival
  • Official Selection – Miami Indie Film Awards

The DVD version includes a special Award-winning short film bonus segment entitled ‘Together – 6 Feet Apart’.

2021 / Documentary / 60 minutes / A film by Jay Paris

HOW TO ORDER:

Public Performance and Digital Site Licenses are available through Soundview Media Partners. To inquire or to place an order, write to info@soundviewmediapartners.com or simply choose from the options below:

License Options

For group screening prices, please inquire.

In-home/personal use copies are available on Amazon: https://amzn.to/3PesXWr

WATCH THE TRAILER

Samira’s Dream

Shots: Eugenics To Pandemics

Two is a Magic Number

A day at the lake becomes a series of betrayals among friends and business partners alike in this new German language mystery.

A love triangle is the focus of this calmly told and at the same time exciting film about a complicated relationship among friends. The title of the film already suggests that this ménage-à-trois has enormous destructive and equally explosive power. “Two is a Magic Number” also means that “three is one too many”.

However, the film is more than a relationship drama. It’s about a woman between two men, but also about a chemical formula that promises success and wealth. The interconnection of these story arcs contains a lot of fuel for love, betrayal, resentment and greed.

While the lines of guilt and innocence blur in the murky waters of a day at the lake, Two is a Magic Number is also a film about inclusion and both physical and emotional disabilities… and the challenges faced by those affected.

A simple day at the lake? Maybe not so simple at all! After all, The Mastery of Suspense Lies in the Complication of Relations.

Two is a Magic Number has been playing festivals around the globe and picking up some nice very awards along the way including, but not limited to:

  • Winner: Best Feature Narrative, Festival of Cinema NYC
  • Winner: Best International Feature Film, Vancouver Independent Film Festival
  • Winner: Black Swan International Film Festival
  • Winner: Outstanding Achievement Award, Tagore International Film Festival
  • Winner: Out of the Can International Film Festival
  • Winner: Goldenstake Award, Shockfest

Featuring a wonderful ensemble cast that includes Phillip Dechamps, Sonka Vogt, Tim Borys and Phillip Dechamps, Two is a Magic Number is a perfect example of contemporary independent German filmmaking.

Mystery / 2021 / 84 minutes / German w/English subtitles / A film by Holger Borggrefe and Stefan Hering.

HOW TO ORDER:

Public Performance and Digital Site Licenses are available through Soundview Media Partners. To inquire or to place an order, write to info@soundviewmediapartners.com or simply choose from the options below:

License Options

For group screening prices, please inquire.

In-home/personal use copies are available on Amazon: https://amzn.to/3cT3Gmp

WATCH THE TRAILER 1

Watch Trailer 2