Press Release

Apollo Film Presents: ImageNation’s Cocktails & Sōl Cinema

Event Date: 
19 November 2020
Harlem, NY
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Black Life Matters: A Program of Short Films & Conversation Thursday, November 19

The Apollo Theater announced today the line-up for Black Life Matters: A Program of Short Films & Conversation, which launches the return of the innovative quarterly series Apollo Film Presents: ImageNation’s Cocktails & Sōl Cinema on November 19 at 7:00pm ET. The program will feature a free online screening of eight curated short films by both internationally-celebrated directors and the next wave of cinematic talent to investigate the global Black experience. For more than eight decades, the Apollo Theater has used its platform to amplify Black voices and advocate for social change, and it continues to provide a forum for intra- and cross-cultural dialogue. The series both celebrates Black life and grapples with systemic challenges to declare a brand new day. 

The virtual screenings will be followed by a panel discussion and Q&A with select directors, including Shawn Batey, Eli Jacobs-Fantauzzi, Nefertite Nguvu, Thati Peele, Christine Turner, and Marshall Tyler. The event will screen on the Apollo Digital Stage and the ImageNation website. 

Cocktails & Sōl Cinema will feature Marshall Tyler’s critically-acclaimed short film Cap, which recently won the Grand Jury Award for Best Narrative Short at the 2019 Urban World Film Festival. Inspired by true events, the narrative follows a family after their 15-year-old son brings home a $300 hat, and addresses the intersecting issues of materialism and violence, and their impact on American youth. The series will also screen Nefertite Nguvu’s rarely-seen short film Myself When I Am Real, a powerful work exploring the psychic terrain of two people struggling to rebuild a marriage, shedding light on trauma, depression, and the complexity of human relationships. A full list of short films featured in the program follows below:

  • 100 Days of Protests, Shawn Batey, Documentary, USA, 2 minutes, 2020
  • Blackout: John Burris Speaks, Terence Nance, Experimental, USA, 2 minutes, 2014
  • Cap, Marshall Tyler, Drama, USA, 16 minutes, 2019
  • Hold On, Christine Turner, Drama, USA, 9 minutes, 2017
  • Lerato, Thati Peele, Drama, South Africa, 12 minutes, 2015
  • Myself When I Am Real, Nefertite Nguvu, Drama, USA, 14 minutes, 2017
  • State of America, Morgan Cooper, Experimental, USA, 3 minutes, 2019
  • Tengo Talento/Dance with Your Heart, Eli Jacobs-Fantauzzi, Documentary, Cuba/USA, 10 minutes, 2017

Apollo Film Presents: ImageNation’s Cocktails & Sōl Cinema features independent films primarily directed by people of color that examine social issues and highlight the humanity of pan-African people in the genres of drama, science fiction, animation, comedy, documentary, and experimental media. 

The series is free to the public, but as a non-profit organization, the Apollo depends on the generous funding from donors, foundations, and the community at-large. Please consider donating to the Apollo Theater in support of these free virtual programs. To do so, please click


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