Founded by award-winning actor Danny Glover, actress Ja’Net Dubois and Ayuko Babu, the 28 th annual Pan African Film and Arts Festival (PAFF) is currently taking place at the Cinemark 15 Theatres, located at the Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza in Los Angeles.
PAFF is the largest Black film festival in the United States and the largest Black History Month cultural event in the nation. This year, it has selected a record-breaking 225 film, representing 52 countries in 26 languages. Plus, ArtFest will feature more than 100 fine artists from around the world. The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) has designated PAFF as an official qualifying film festival for live action and animation short films.
STATEMENT FROM GLOVER AND BABU ON THE PASSING OF JA’NET DUBOIS:
“We are shocked and stunned by the passing of one of the founders of the Pan African Film and Arts Festival, and one of the most important shining and guiding lights. Our sister, Ja’Net DuBois, epitomized a true, conscious Pan African artist who mastered the ability to be idealistic and practical at the same time. It’s rare to find a person — let alone an artist — who strikes a wonderful balance.
If Madame DuBois had lived during the times of the great Pharaohs; or the great kingdoms of Timbuktu; or the great kingdoms in southern Africa, such as the Zimbabwe and Zulu kingdoms, she would have been known as a Jali or a Sangoma. In our contemporary times, she was able to use modern technology to spread her voice, her image, her spirit, her songs and our stories around the globe and touch us with humor, dignity and her ancient wisdom.
A mighty giant tree has fallen in the forest today! With her death occurring in the midst of the Pan African Film and Arts Festival, she left us an important message — support cultural institutions like her beloved Pan African Film and Arts Festival, and it will point you toward liberation and freedom. If not — like the bluesman, Taj Maahal sings — you’ll stumble and fall. — co-founders Danny Glover and Ayuko Babu, on behalf of the staff of the Pan African Film and Arts Festival and the many thousands of people who attend it!