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Thomas Allen Harris - Director-Producer-Writer

Raised in the Bronx and Dar-Es-Salaam, Tanzania, Thomas Allen Harris is an award-winning filmmaker and cultural warrior, whose documentary films, installations, and experimental videos have been featured in venues across the international landscape on television, at festivals, museums, and galleries. For over 6 years, Harris produced for public television, which included two Emmy nominations (in 1991) for his work as a staff producer at WNET (New Yorkĵs PBS affiliate) on THE ELEVENTH HOUR and THIRTEEN LIVE. His documentary programs CRISIS: Who Will Do Science? and CRISIS: Urban Education aired nationally on public television in 1989 and 1990 respectively.

Harris' most recent film "Twelve Disciples of Nelson Mandela" is the third film to make its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival and was broadcast on POV/The American Documentary Series. The film made its theatrical premiere at the BAM Cinematech and won over five international awards and honors including the Truer Than Fiction Independent Spirit Award Nomination, Best Documentary Awards at the Pan African and Santa Cruz Film Festivals, and the Henry Hampton Award for Excellence in Documentary Filmmaking from the Roxbury Film Festival.

Harris' 2001 documentary, É Minha Cara/That's My Face, premiered at the Toronto, Sundance, Berlin and Tribeca Film Festivals and was broadcast on the Sundance Channel and ARTE. The film made its theatrical premiere at the BAM Cinematech and won seven international awards, including the Prize of the Ecumenical Jury of Christian Churches at the 2002 Berlin International Film Festival.

Harris' 1995 documentary feature, VINTAGE - FAMILIES OF VALUE, premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival, won Best Documentary at the Atlanta Film and Video Festival, a Golden Gate Award at the San Francisco International Film Festival, was selected for Official Competition at FESPACO in 1997. VINTAGE was broadcast nationally on Free Speech TV in 1999.

Harris' short films include: HEAVEN, EARTH, AND HELL,(selected for the Whitney Museum of American Art's 1995 Biennial); BLACK BODY, and SPLASH, .

Additional projects include multimedia installations at Gwangju Biennial in Korea, the Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington, DC, New Langton Arts in San Francisco and the Long Beach Museum of Art.

A recent recipient of the United States Artist Award, Harris has received awards, grants and fellowships from such institutions as the Sundance Institute, the Ford Foundation, National Endowment for the Arts, the Jerome Foundation, the Paul Robeson Fund, and the Lannan Foundation. A Harvard graduate, Harris is presently a visiting professor at Sarah Lawrence College.

 

Don Perry - Producer

Mr. Perry is Chief Operating Officer of Chimpanzee Productions, Inc. He was co-writer and co-producer of Thomas Allen Harrisı feature-length documentary E MINHA CARA/THATıS MY FACE. Mr. Perry is an experienced financial and management consultant with a wide ranging background in commercial finance. He is a Certified Insolvency & Restructuring Advisor and was Executive Vice President - Finance for Wyndhurst Associates, LLC, a boutique financial restructuring and turnaround management firm prior to his association with Chimpanzee Productions. Prior to joining Wyndhurst, Mr. Perry founded a strategic management consulting practice providing services to emerging growth companies focusing on business turnarounds; developing e-commerce strategies and services; mergers and acquisitions; business and process re-engineering; organizational design and development; and corporate finance. Mr. Perry holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in International Relations and Development Economics from Williams College. He received his Masters in Business Administration in Strategic Management from the Peter F. Drucker Center, Claremont Graduate University.

 

Deborah Willis - Producer

DEBORAH WILLIS, CO-EXECUTIVE PRODUCER Deborah Willis has researched and written about the works of Black photographers for twenty years, becoming the preeminent documentarian of the unique legacy of these pioneers. A 2000 MacArthur Fellow, her academic writing has addressed critical questions in the broad areas of photographic history, visual culture, African American art and popular and material culture. In her work, Ms Willis looked at how photographs have been used by art photographers looking at the family, how families and the general public preserve images, the implications of stereotyping, how gender is portrayed and what assumptions are made of images of women. Most of her published works offer new interpretations of the generic photographic history, African American art and gender studies. Her most recent publications include: Through a Lens Darkly History: A History of Black Photographers 1840 to the Present, which forms the cornerstone of the film project and includes over 500 images that present the rich history and moving glimpses of Black life from slavery to the Great Migrations, from rare antebellum portraits to 1990s middle-class Black families; and The Black Female Body: A Photographic History, co-authored with Carla Williams, that includes over 185 images spanning three centuries by such historical and contemporary artists as Bravo, Weston, Renee Cox, Lorna Simpson, Joy Gregory and Catherine Opie, who photograph Black women asserting their subjectivity, reclaiming their bodies and refusing the representations of the past.

 

Woo Jung Cho - Producer

Woo is a Principal at Imprint Features, a New York City-based firm that develops, produces and secures distribution for independent feature films.  Her producing credits include: Twelve Disciples of Nelson Mandela (Producer), and Lest We Forget (Associate Producer). As a Sales/Producer's Representative, she has worked on such acclaimed feature films as Daughter From Danang, É Minha Cara/ That's My Face, Paradox Lake, Face, My Flesh and Blood, Flag Wars, State of Denial and Gay Sex in the 70s.  She is currently developing a documentary feature about Korean-American avant-garde artist Theresa Hak Kyung Cha. Previously, Woo worked for Rudolph & Beer as a Development and Production Associate. She received her JD from New York University School of Law.

 

Paul Carter Harrison - Writer

Paul Carter Harrison is an award winning playwright/director/theatre theorist whose work has been produced and published in both Europe and the United States. He has had a long artistic association, as writer/director, with the Negro Ensemble Company which had produced his earlier plays, TOPHAT, ABERCROMBIE APOCALYPSE, and the celebrated GREAT MACDADDY which won an an Obie Award. Other significant plays include the ritual-drama AMERI/CAIN GOTHIC, the multi-media musical DEATH OF BOOGIE WOOGIE, and the Audelco Award winning musical-drama, TABERNACLE. As dramaturg/director, he has developed such distinguished works as AINıT SUPPOSED TO DIE A NATURAL DEATH, LADY DAY: A MUSICAL TRAGEDY, and the Audelco Award winning TRIAL OF ONE SHORT-SIGHTED BLACK WOMAN VS. MAMMY LOUISE AND SAFREETA MAE. The recipient of a Rockefeller Foundation Fellowship for American Playwriting, a National Endowment of the Arts Playwrights Fellowship, and two Meet-the Composer/Readerıs Digest Commission, he is also the author of the The Drama of Nommo, a collection of essays that has been a seminal influence in the exploration of ritual stylization for many contemporary playwrights and directors in Black Theatre practice.

 

Terence Taylor - Photographic Animation

Terence has worked extensively as a graphic artist/designer and digital animator. He was creative director, graphic artist and digital animator on CD-ROM adaptations of five Mercer Mayer childrenıs books, and designed interstitial graphics for Microsoft, Parkay and Ballpark Franks. For the last two years, under his own company name, Bedlam Ink, Terence's primary graphics client has been The Skillman Foundation in Detroit, designing annual reports, display graphics, a bi-monthly newsletter and weekly full-page children's ads for the Detroit News and Free Press. He designed animated maps, archival photographs and opening/closing credit sequences for Thomas Allen Harris' acclaimed documentary, "Twelve Disciples of Nelson Mandela", which premiered at the 2005 Toronto Film festival and won best documentary in its United States premiere at the 2006 Pan-African Film festival in Los Angeles. It also premiered this fall in 2006 on P.O.V. on PBS. Terence also designed still, movie poster and headline animation for "Fabulous", a documentary on the story of queer cinema for the Independent Film Channel, which premiered at the 2006 Berlin Film Festival. He is currently designing animated graphics for IFC's Indie Sex series.

 

Sam Pollard - Editor

For over 25 years, Sam Pollard has had a significant role in bringing programming that illuminates the Black experience in America to both television and theatrical audiences. Mr. Pollard has edited award-winning films including Jim Brown All American (2002); American Roots Music (2001); Half Past Autumn: The Life and Works of Gordon Parks (2000); Bamboozled (2000); 4 Little Girls (1997); Girl 6 (1996); Clockers (1995); No Dreams Deferred (1994); Surviving the Game (1994); Jungle Fever (1991) and Mo' Better Blues (1990). Mr. Pollardıs credits also include the series: I'll Make me A World, and The Rise and Fall of Jim Crow, both broadcast nationally on PBS. Mr. Pollard is a Professor in the Tisch School of Arts at New York University.

 

Vernon Reid - Composer

Vernon Reid was born in London, England but spent most of his childhood in Brooklyn, New York. In the early 1980s, while working with jazz drummer Ronald Shannon Jackson's Decoding Society, Vernon began the rock group Living Colour. Living Colour subsequently released four albums and sold over four million records and won two Grammy Awards, two MTV Music Video Awards, an International Rock Award and several New York Music Awards. Vernon has appeared as a guest guitarist on the records of many diverse artists, including: Jack DeJohnette; Public Enemy; B.B. King; The Ramones; Mariah Carey; Mick Jagger; Tracy Chapman; DJ Logic; Salif Keita; Carlos Santana; Jack Bruce; and The Roots. Vernon has composed music for modern dance choreographers Ralph Lemon, Marlies Yearby, Bill T. Jones, Donald Byrd, and Gabri Christa. Vernon's work as a film composer and music supervisor has included the films: Fresh Kill ( feature/score), Once In The Life (feature/song), Paid In Full (feature/score), Ghosts Of Attica (documentary/ score), Vintage Families Of Value (documentary/score), E Minha Cara/Thatıs My Face.(documentary/score), Almost Home (documentary/score), Mr. 3000 (feature/music supervisor), Shadow; Dead Riot (feature/score), Five Fingers (feature/score)

 


Any questions or comments please e-mail Thomas Allen Harris.
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