BlackStar Film Festival to Host Exclusive Screenings of A
LOVE SONG FOR LATASHA on Anniversary of L.A. Uprisings
The 2019 short film by Sophia Nahli Allison will stream for a
limited time this weekend, followed by a powerful panel

(Philadelphia, PA — April 30, 2020) — BlackStar Film Festival and Sophia Nahli Allison
announced today that they would be hosting three exclusive online screenings of
Allison’s A Love Song for Latasha this weekend, in recognition of the 28th anniversary of
the L.A. Uprisings. Allison’s 19-minute experimental documentary, which won Best
Documentary Short at the 2019 BlackStar Film Festival, centers on the life of Latasha
Harlins, the 15-year-old whose 1991 murder in Los Angeles set the stage for the racial
justice protests that swept the city the following year.

This weekend’s screenings will culminate in a live conversation at 5pm ET on May 3rd
between Sophia Nahli Allison, Insecure producer Deniese Davis, artist Lynnée Denise,
Surviving R. Kelly executive producer dream hampton, and scholar Marcus Anthony Hunter, on the links between visual art, collective memory, and Black liberation.

The film will be streamed three times consecutively over the course of an hour, beginning
at the following times:

Friday, May 1 – Beginning 7 pm ET / 4 pm PT
Saturday, May 2 – Beginning 7pm ET / 4 pm PT
Sunday, May 3 – Beginning 4 pm ET / 1 pm PT
followed by 5 pm ET / 2pm PT Live Conversation

The live streams will be accessible on BlackStar’s Facebook page, here. A Facebook
account is not required to view the streams.

“We are currently living through history, an unprecedented time for us all. Art has
always been a tool to reimagine, radically dream, dismantle, and heal. As we approach the
28th anniversary of The 1992 L.A. Riots, how do we engage with the past in a way that is
healing and radically transforms our own understanding of time and black liberation?

How does engaging with the past allow us to persevere through the present and envision
a new future? How does art, the archive, collective memory, and the power of dreaming
challenge and dismantle how our stories have been remembered and recorded?,” said
Allison. “Latasha Harlins is a name that is synonymous with the riots, but too often
nuanced stories of black women and black girls go unnoticed and their trauma becomes
their full existence. To commemorate this time in LA history we hold space for Latasha
Harlins, celebrating her life and the women who’ve kept her memory alive.”

A Love Song for Latasha premiered at the 2019 Tribeca Film Festival and was an official
selection of the 2020 Sundance Film Festival, in addition to winning Best Documentary
Short at the 2019 BlackStar Film Festival. BlackStar will stream the film on their
Facebook page three times consecutively at 7 pm ET on May 1st and 2nd, and three times
again at 4 pm ET on May 3rd. The third and final screening on May 3rd will be followed by
the live conversation, at 5 pm ET, also on BlackStar’s Facebook page.

Sophia Nahli Allison is an experimental documentary filmmaker, photographer and dreamer.
A native of South Central Los Angeles, she disrupts conventional documentary methods by reimagining the archives and excavating hidden truths. Her work is a meditation of the spirit. She conjures ancestral memories to explore the intersection of fiction and non- fiction storytelling. She is a 2020 United States Artists Fellow in Film and has held residencies at The MacDowell Colony, The Camargo Foundation in Cassis, France., The Center for Photography at Woodstock, and POV Spark’s African Interactive Art Residency.
She is a recipient of a 2014 Chicago 3Arts Award and has received grants from the

Sundance Institute New Frontier Lab Programs, Glassbreaker Films, and Getty Images. In
2017 she was named the Student Video Photographer of the Year by the White House News
Photographers Association. She has a Master’s Degree in visual communication from UNC.

Past projects have been featured on The New Yorker, The Atlantic, The Root, with Los
Angeles Filmforum at MOCA, and more. Her short documentary A Love Song For Latasha
premiered at the 2019 Tribeca Film Festival, the 2020 Sundance Film Festival, and received
the Grand Jury Documentary Prize at AFI Fest, along with Best Documentary Short awards
at the New Orleans Film Festival, BlackStar Film Festival, and more including an IDA
Documentary Awards Nomination.

Deniese Davis got her start in entertainment by producing indie low-budget projects
including music videos, short films and digital content. In the web-series realm she is
best known for producing Issa Rae’s award-winning web series, The Mis-Adventures of
Awkward Black Girl. She is currently a Producer on the HBO comedy series Insecure and an
Executive Producer on the upcoming HBO limited series The Dolls while continuing to
produce and oversee content for Issa Rae Productions. She also serves as COO of
ColorCreative, which provides access and opportunities for diverse and emerging writers
and recently sold their first feature film Love in America to Universal. Originally from
Las Vegas NV, Deniese is an alum of CUNY-Brooklyn College and the American Film Institute Conservatory.

Lynnée Denise was shaped as a DJ by her parents’ record collection. She’s an artist,
scholar, and writer whose work reflects on underground cultural movements, the 1980s and
electronic music of the African Diaspora. Lynnée Denise coined the phrase ‘DJ
Scholarship’ to reposition the role of the DJ from party purveyor to an archivist,
cultural custodian and information specialist.

dream hampton is a writer and filmmaker from Detroit.

Marcus Anthony Hunter is the Scott Waugh Endowed Chair in the Division of the Social
Sciences, Professor of sociology, and Chair of the department of African American Studies
at UCLA. He is author of three books: Black Citymakers: How The Philadelphia Negro Changed Urban America (Oxford University Press, 2013), Chocolate Cities: The Black Map of American Life (University of California Press, 2018) coauthored with Zandria F. Robinson, and The New Black Sociologists (Routledge, 2018).

About BlackStar Film Festival
The BlackStar Film Festival is an annual celebration of the visual and storytelling
traditions of the African diaspora and global communities of color — showcasing films by
Black, Brown, and Indigenous people from around the world.

Press Contacts
Ed Winstead

Director, Cultural Counsel
Danellys “D.W.” Wong

Account Coordinator, Cultural Counsel
Robert Grand

Account Coordinator, Cultural Counsel