WORLDWIDE RIGHTS TO KELLY FYFFE-MARSHALL’S BLACK BODIES ACQUIRED BY LEVELFILMI!
WORLDWIDE RIGHTS TO KELLY FYFFE-MARSHALL’S BLACK BODIES ACQUIRED BY LEVELFILM
Canadian Screen Award-Winning Short will be released in Canada alongside Charles Officer’s AKILLA’S ESCAPE, which also brought home five CSAs
Toronto. June 2, 2021. Following its win for Best Live Action Short at the CSA’s, a World Premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival this past September and its US festival launch at Sundance, levelFILM has acquired worldwide rights to the powerful short film BLACK BODIES, directed by Kelly Fyffe-Marshall. The film was named to TIFF's year-end Canada's Top Ten list for short films and Fyffe-Marshall was named the winner of the TIFF’s inaugural Changemaker Award. She was also honoured with the Jay Scott Prize by the Toronto Film Critics Association earlier this year.
Inspired by a real-life incident when Fyffe-Marshall, Komi Olaf and Donisha Prendergast were travelling in California, and a woman in the neighbourhood called the police because she wrongly believed they were burglarizing their short-term rental, the film features Olaf and Prendergast performing spoken word pieces about the trauma of being victimized by anti-Black racism.
To have the film showcased to as wide an audience as possible in Canada, levelFILM will be attaching Black Bodies to the release of Charles Officer’s feature AKILLA’S ESCAPE, which won five Canadian Screen Awards, including best original screenplay and cinematography. The films will be released across Canada on June 15th on digital & VOD, and in select theatres later this summer. AKILLA’S ESCAPE, which also premiered at last year’s TIFF, was written by Officer and Wendy Motion Brathwaite and stars Saul Williams. Donisha Prendergast stars in both films.
“I’m excited for the opportunity with levelFILM to share this film with so many, to reach new audiences, help incite important conversations and most importantly make ripples,” said Fyffe Marshall. "I wanted to tell a story for a people who are constantly ostracized, appropriated and targeted. What does this weight feel like without words, what is the feeling that wells up inside every time you hear of injustice, how does it feel to be powerless and so powerful almost simultaneously.”
"BLACK BODIES is a film, short-form or otherwise, that stays with you,” stated David Hudakoc, Managing Director of levelFILM. “Having Charles Officer’s blessing to have the film be released alongside AKILLA’S ESCAPE is a testament to how much Charles gives back to the film community and how we can all affect change by supporting new and explosive voices like Kelly Fyffe-Marshall.”
“When levelFILM presented the possibility of pairing the release of AKILLA’S ESCAPE with the short film BLACK BODIES, we loved the idea,” added the acclaimed Canadian director, Officer. “Kelly Fyffe-Marshall is no doubt a filmmaker to watch and we are excited to support this powerful work.”
BLACK BODIES is produced by Tamar Bird and Sasha Leigh Henry. Kelly Fyffe-Marshall is currently in pre-production on her first feature film, WHEN MORNING COMES. WHEN MORNING COMES is part of Telefilm Canada’s Talent Fund project. The acquisition of BLACK BODIES was negotiated by levelFILM’s Hudakoc and Daniel Quinn, and the producing team of Sasha Leigh Henry, Tamar Bird and Fyffe-Marshall. Black Bodies will be released globally later
Based in Toronto, Canada, levelFILM is the entertainment distribution company bringing audiences feature films such as STREET GANG: HOW WE GOT TO SESAME STREET, THE DISSIDENT, THE ASSISTANT, PEANUT BUTTER FALCON and LES MISÉRABLES. Founded in 2013, levelFILM is an innovative full-service distributor, specializing in acquiring, developing, marketing and selling captivatingly original, quality independent films in Canada and abroad. Between a growing catalogue of high-quality titles and projects in development, levelFILM's goal is to create balance both on-screen and off.