“Faubourg Tremé: The Untold Story of Black New Orleans” Here for a Limited Time Only
Last year, in early autumn, I sent an announcement that this film would be shown at the South Madison Branch Public Library; unfortunately, it was the wrong date and time. It rolled before the weekend marking the fifth anniversary of Katrina and the levee breaks.
Hopefully, this faux pas will be remedied through yall watching the actual film above, Faubourg Tremé: The Untold Story of Black New Orleans, which is being offered to those born and/or raised New Orleanians, fans of New Orleans as well as educators, archivists and librarians as a preview from California Newsreel. The preview is going to last for a limited time possibly up to two weeks, perhaps longer.
An excerpt from its description:
Faubourg Tremé: The Untold Story of Black New Orleans was largely shot before the Katrina tragedy but edited afterward, giving the film both a celebratory and elegiac tone. It is a film of such effortless intimacy, subtle glances and authentic details that only two native New Orleanians could have made it.
Our guide through the film, three centuries of black history and the fascinating neighborhood of Faubourg Tremé is New Orleans Times-Picayune columnist Lolis Eric Elie (now a writer for David Simon‘s new HBO TV series, Tremé) who decided that rather than abandon his heritage after Hurricane Katrina he would invest in it by rehabilitating an old house in the Tremé district.
The directors are Lolis Eric Elie and Dawn Logsdon; the producers are Lucie Faulknor, Lolis Eric Elie, and Dawn Logsdon. Elie also wrote the film script. The executive producers are Wynton Marsalis and Stanley Nelson. The Faubourg Tremé home page is here, for more information.
Faubourg Tremé debuted at Robert DeNiro‘s Tribeca Film Festival in 2008. Since then, it has garnered a number of awards including the Golden Gate Award at the San Francisco International Film Festival, Best Documentary at the San Francisco Black Film Festival, and was an Official Selection at the Vancouver, Rio de Janeiro, and Hot Springs Documentary Film Festivals. It has also won the Award of Commendation from the Society for Visual Anthropology, and the Peter C. Rollins Award for Best Documentary, Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association.
If you were also wondering, it premiered on PBS in January 2009.
The DVD itself is $24.95. I’m sure that you can find it on Amazon cheaper, however, supporting these entities, California Newsreel and the Faubourg Tremé website, helps to keep independent documentary films alive in the mainstream.
As the Mississippi is rising and reclaiming its own, thus creating a new series of disasters for people who live along its waters, think of what was lost in New Orleans, as well as the fortunes of those who had little and yet gave a lot in culture and community. These were little people. Poor people. People like my long-dead maternal grandparents. The same thing is now happening in places like Tennessee, Arkansas and Mississippi, and will visit Louisiana, where the waters will rise to threaten the fragile boomlet that is currently happening in New Orleans. As one non-New Orleanian put it, you never think that it will happen to you, and then it does. A catastrophe doesn’t discriminate. Well, nobody is acting superior now. Nobody. When it (disaster) strikes you, all arguments fail.