ABOUT THE FILM
This televised play stands as a prime example of how the Harlem Renaissance’s potent creative energies both defined its own era and still transcends it to inform the art and culture of modern times. Written by and starring veteran actress and activist Ruby Dee, the teleplay captures the extraordinary personality, humour and genius of writer, filmmaker and anthropologist Zora Neale Hurston (1891-1960).
The film presents a glittering collage of folklore, history, music, dance, fashion and high literary culture, along with other artists of the period: poet Langston Hughes, artist Aaron Douglas, novelist Jessie Redmon Fauset, writer/artist Richard Bruce Nugent, and Wallace Thurman, among others. Cast includes: Louis Gossett, Jr., the late Flip Wilson, Lynn Whitfield and Paula Kelly.
The many directing awards won by Neema Barnette include the NAACP Image Award for the NBC dramatic special One More Hurdle, an Emmy Award for the after school special To Be A Man, an American Women in Radio and Television Directing Award for the NBC documentary The Silent Crime and a Cable Ace Award for the Lifetime Movie Better Off Dead. She serves on the Executive Board of the DGA African-American Steering Committee and has been on the Board of Directors of the Black Filmmakers Foundation since its inception. Neema Barnette is the first African-American woman to direct a television sitcom and to receive a two picture deal with Sony.