Wednesday, October 29, 2014

The Chairman Bobby Seale

  Julius Caesar  advised “If you must break the law, do it to seize power: in all other cases observe it.” So that is what Bobby Seale and Huey P. Newton did to challenge the racism and inequality of the 1960's. After serving three years in the Us Air Force he attended Merritt College  in Oakland  where he met Newton and  formed The Black Panther Party for Self Defense. Reminiscent of Michael Brown  and Trayvon Martin today,  Bobby Seale and Huey P. Newton went  to get justice for Denzil Dowell  a young African American construction worker shot in handcuffs. Throughout his civil rights  career he was jailed several times. There was The Mulford Act where he stormed the Sacramento Capitol with guns to protest the violation of his constitutional rights.

Valor worthy of a Presidential Medal of Freedom  Bobby was  bound and gagged at his 1969 court case for being accused of inciting riots protesting The Vietnam War at the Democratic National Convention known as The Chicago 8.  COINTELPRO engineered murder charges  then  arrested Bobby Seale and Ericka Huggins for the murder of Alex Rackley. The charges were dismissed.  During his reign as Chairman of The Black Panther Party, Surivial Programs such as free  breakfast for children,free groceries, prison reform, healthcare  clinics and a school and were established.  He ran for mayor of Oakland and came in second.  He is the author of "The Lonely Rage" and "Seize The Time". As a senior statesman of civil rights Bobby Seale continues his mission for social change with  speaking engagements and a new book, "The Eighth Defendant".

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

The Queen Christine Vachon

The Queen of independent film Christine Vachon   took to Twitter to announce the impeding 20 year anniversary of Killer Films and homage must be paid.  As producing partner with Pamela Koffler, her 60 plus slate includes features, shorts,  documentaries and made for television films. The Brown graduate who began as a production assistant, Christine is a successful businesswoman with twenty five years under her belt in the volatile entertainment industry.

Under her rebellious helm  (Far From Heaven> (nominated for four Academy Awards),< Boys Don't Cry (Academy Award winner), One Hour Photo, Hedwig and the Angry Inch, Happiness, Velvet Goldmine, SAFE, I Shot Andy Warhol, Go Fish, Swoon, I'm Not There, Gigantic, Cracks and Cairo Time to name a few)  are where socially conscious, creative and edgy films get made.  Those who can do teach Christine is in demand as an entertainment industry speaker   and mentor.

 She's written two how it's done books, "Shoot to Kill" and "A Killer Life: How An Independent Film Producer Survives Deal And Disasters In Hollywood And Beyond" on low budget filmmaking.
Now is the time to plan the retrospectives, lifetime achievement awards, tributes and specials for the filmmaker who lives by her own credo, "Making movies is an immoderate activity. You have to stay sane and also embrace the madness if you want to shoot to kill.".


I had a gift card for a makeup application in my International Emmy's Gala swag bag. So off I went to the Le Parker Méridien Hotel to ...