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Black Films to be Showcased in the Riverside Film Festival

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In Our Hands

Director: Josefine Borrmann
Tanzania/USA
Documentary, 12 minutes

People with disabilities in Tanzania are treated as though they can contribute nothing to society, but small groups are now working to achieve fair access to government loans and other programs to work and employ others. Salum and Malise represent the able people of Tanzania. Their lives are entwined through their common goal of standing proudly as productive members of society. Leading their own initiatives while struggling to gain respect in a society that labels them as disabled, these individuals represent the current Tanzanian disability movement.

About the Director Josefine Borrmann, Director
As an international filmmaker, Josefine Borrmann uses her experiences of living in several countries to foster a sense of understanding and respect of the cultures she is exploring with her films. Her intentions are to use film as a media to uncover life of hidden subcultures facing societal conflicts. Her works include In Our Hands, She's My Superman, We Come From Jambiani, and her next film will be made in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in Juli 2011.

The Fifth Quarter

Director: Rick Bieber
USA
Feature, 96 minutes

In 2006, 16-year-old Luke Abbate was killed in a car accident. His older brother, a football player at Wake Forest University, decided to honor his brother’s memory by wearing his No. 5 jersey and dedicating the season to him. His teammates also became inspired and played the best football of their lives. An inspirational true story of family, faith, and the gift of life, The Fifth Quarter is much more than a football film. The film has won numerous awards and is opening in theaters on the East Coast just as it opens RIFF’s 2011 season.

About the Director Rick Bieber, Writer/Director/Producer
Rick Bieber spent hundreds of hours talking with the Abbate family in preparation for writing the screenplay, and they were also in attendance throughout the film. For many years, he has produced or executive produced feature films such as Flatliners and Radio Flyer, as well as over 30 television and cable movies, including Mandela.

Beatboxing: The Fifth Element of Hip Hop

Director: Klaus Schneyder
Germany
Documentary: 53 minutes

It was in the late 70s that a youth culture evolved in the poorer parts of New York which combined several disciplines under the name of Hip Hop. From the hardship of poverty and the lack of instruments, a pioneer was inspired to imitate drum rhythms with his mouth - his brilliance creating the term 'Human Beatbox'. Beatboxing has become a global phenomenon, which is organized and celebrated in the annual Beatbox Conventions and through Beatbox Competitions, that are being held in an increasing number of countries every year.

About the Director Klaus Schneyder, Writer/Director/Producer
This is Klaus Schneyder’s first film. It grew out of interviews filmed over several years during his research in New York and California toward writing an academic book on the phenomenon of Beatboxing.

Lost & Found

Director: Kiah S. Jones, Jonathan Formica, Alexander Gaeta, Rob McClelland, Malica Chehrzad, Lauren Hulsey
Botswana/USA
Documentary, 17 minutes

In a small nation with over 130,000 orphaned kids, many living on the streets - one program is turning their lives around. Cynthia and her partner, Victor, take to the streets of Botswana twice a week offering orphans and kids unwanted by their families an opportunity to abandon the harsh and sometimes dangerous life on the streets. They provide these kids with an education and a stable home.

About the Director Kiah S. Jones. Originally from Boston, Massachusetts, Kiah has produced several documentaries, short films and music videos. She is set to receive her MFA in Film & TV Producing in May 2011 from the Dodge College of Film & Media Arts at Chapman University.

Jonathan Formica. Hailing from Lake Forest, California, Jonathan is currently in pursuit of a BFA in Broadcast Journalism from the Dodge College of Film and Media Arts at Chapman University.

Malica Chehrzad. Originally from Huntington Beach, California, Malica will receive her BFA in Broadcast Journalism and Documentary film making from the Dodge College of Film and Media Arts at Chapman University in May 2011. Alexander Gaeta. Born in the heart of the Colorado Rocky Mountains, Alex is currently seeking a BFA in Film Production from Chapman University.

Rob McClelland. Rob, originally from Tucson, Arizona, is a senior in the BFA Film Production program at Chapman University. His passion for photography has led him to study cinematography in pursuit of a career shooting documentary and narrative films.

Lauren Hulsey. Originally from Rockville, Maryland, Lauren recently graduated with a BFA in Digital Arts from Chapman University.

Punch Me

Director: Robert X. Golphin
USA
Short, 14 minutes

With a romance on the rocks and a father on his sick bed, a young man must accept his true identity before he loses the two people he loves most. 'Sometimes a push is all you need'.

About the Director Robert X. Golphin
Director/Writer/Lead Actor Robert X. Golphin is an American award-nominated actor, award-winning filmmaker/ screenwriter, author, motivational speaker/orator, and journalist from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He is best known for his portrayal of Dunbar Reed in the 2007 film The Great Debaters. Robert holds a B.A. in Theater and Film (Magna Cum Laude), and a Diploma in Creative Writing from the Philadelphia H.S. for the Creative & Performing Arts.

Actress Angelina Jolie Says People Fleeing Libya Need Support

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(Reuters) - Actress and goodwill ambassador Angelina Jolie appealed on Tuesday for international support for people fleeing the conflict in Libya and for increased aid for those inside the country.

Jolie, a goodwill ambassador for the United Nations' refugee agency UNHCR who visited the Libyan-Tunisian border, said recent arrivals from Libya had told her about heavy fighting, harassment and assaults.

More than 400,000 people have fled Libya to Tunisia, Egypt, Niger, Algeria, Chad and Sudan since February when rebels rose up against Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi. More than half have arrived in Tunisia.

"The international community has done well to reinforce Tunisia's remarkable relief effort," Jolie said in a UNHCR statement. "But with 2,000 people still crossing each day, we cannot let the funding dry up and need to sustain the momentum."

She also appealed for measures that would allow the U.N. and non-governmental organizations to access Libya and distribute urgent assistance, including food and medical supplies.

At the end of February, transit facilities were erected 7 km (4 miles) inside Tunisia to provide temporary shelter for those arriving from Libya and UNHCR and the International Organization for Migration (IOM) organized humanitarian air evacuations.

More than 70,000 people have returned home with the help of UNHCR and IOM but more continue to arrive. Some 11,000 third country nationals are still in transit.

UNHCR said Jolie's family Jolie-Pitt foundation had covered the costs for a flight of 177 people and bought an ambulance to help support Tunisian efforts to assist the wounded.

There are some 2,500 people who are originally from war-torn countries and are unable to return home, UNHCR said.

"They're waiting here with little hope, unable to return home and unsure of what's to come. This constant cycle of displacement must finally come to an end," Jolie said.

(editing by Elizabeth Piper)

Rihanna Says She Doesn't Want to Hurt Brown's Career

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(Reuters) - Singer Rihanna has told Rolling Stone magazine she agreed a judge could ease a stay away order against her ex-boyfriend Chris Brown over a violent altercation two years ago because she didn't want to hurt his career.

The 23-year-old told the music magazine it was "my decision" not to object to a Los Angeles judge's decision in February to downgrade a restraining order keeping Brown, 21, 50 yards away from Rihanna -- 10 yards at music industry events.

"It doesn't mean we're gonna make up or even talk again. It just means I didn't want to object to the judge," she told the magazine in an excerpt published Wednesday.

The singer added she had his music career in mind.

"We don't have to talk ever again in my life," she said. "I just didn't want to make it more difficult for him professionally. What he did was a personal thing -- it had nothing to do with his career. Saying he has to be a hundred feet away from me, he can't perform at awards shows -- that definitely made it difficult for him."

Rihanna's blunt admissions are a stark contrast to Brown, who last week threw an angry tantrum in the dressing room of a U.S. morning chat show after clamming up when an interviewer brought up the topic of his 2009 assault on Rihanna.

Brown, 21, was promoting his new album "F.A.M.E.," while Rihanna talked to Rolling Stone about one of her singles, "S&M," off her fifth studio album, "Loud," that spawned No. 1 hit singles including "Only Girl (In the World)".

Rihanna told Rolling Stone she put up a front in public after the assault.

"I put my guard up so hard. I didn't want people to see me cry. I didn't want people to feel bad for me. It was a very vulnerable time in my life, and I refused to let that be the image. I wanted them to see me as, 'I'm fine, I'm tough.' I put that up until it felt real."

About "S&M," she said that "being submissive in the bedroom is really fun. You get to be a little lady, to have somebody be macho and in charge...that's fun to me. I like to be spanked."

And the pop star even confesses to a bit of sexting, every so often: "When you're not with the person you want to be intimate with, a picture is the next best thing," she said.

The Rolling Stone issue with Rihanna hits newsstands on Friday, April 1.

(editing by Bob Tourtellotte)

Chris Brown Outburst Divides Fans, Album Sales Soar

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(Reuters) - Singer Chris Brown angrily stormed out of a TV studio on Tuesday, reigniting controversy over his 2009 assault on singer Rihanna but helping to send his new album to the top of iTunes charts.

Brown, 21, who has struggled to repair his image after hitting and punching his then girlfriend two years ago, left behind a smashed window in his dressing room after dodging questions about the incident in an interview on ABC television's "Good Morning America".

News of the outburst divided fans of the R&B singer, while viewers of ABC's highly-rated TV competition "Dancing with the Stars" demanded the cancellation of a a planned performance by Brown on next week's show.

However, Brown's new album "F.A.M.E", on the Jive record label, was the top downloaded album on Apples' iTunes store on its first day of release Tuesday, an Apple spokesman said.

Brown's music career stalled after he pleaded guilty to assaulting Rihanna in February 2009, setting off a national debate on young, abusive relationships.

He publicly apologized, then underwent court-ordered domestic violence counseling and spent six months performing community service.

But when pressed about the incident on "Good Morning America", Brown appeared annoyed and said; "It's not really a big deal to me now, as far as that situation. I think I'm past that in my life. Today's the album day, so that's what I'm focused on."

He followed up with a Twitter message -- according to media reports and later deleted from his account -- saying "I'm so over people bringing this past shit up!!! Yet we praise Charlie sheen and other celebs for there bullshit." (Spelling and grammar are unchanged).

Some fans agreed. "We love you Chris!! There's no reason for anyone to even ask him about Rihanna anymore, ABC should have had something better to talk about as that is old," wrote supporter nthnbtlove on the MTV message boards.

But viewers of ABC's top-rated reality show "Dancing with the Stars" felt differently. Brown is scheduled to sing on the show in a week's time.

"His freak out on GMA proves how scary and unpredictable he is. If ABC does not do the right thing and ban him, I will have no choice but to not watch that episode," wrote chadcronin on the official "Dancing" message boards.

ABC did not return calls for comments on Brown's planned "Dancing with the Stars" appearance.

ABC News said in a statement; "As always, we asked questions that are relevant and newsworthy, and that's what we did in this interview with Mr. Brown."

(Reporting by Jill Serjeant; Editing by Bob Tourtellotte)

Poignant Documentaries to Show during Film Festival

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Clickin' for Love and Hauling coming to Riverside International Film Festival

The Riverside International Film Festival (RIFF) is excited to announce two premier documentaries to be shown during this year's festivities - Clickin' for Love and Hauling. RIFF launches April 8 and continues through April 17, 2011 at the UltraStar Cinemas in the University Village at 1201 University Avenue, Riverside, CA, 92507. More than 100 domestic and international films are expected to screen during this yearly event.

Clickin' for Love is a documentary about the ever-growing world of internet dating. Internet dating has been around for more than a decade, but it still isn't clear whether online dating really works. Is "happily ever after" a realistic goal for online daters? Clickin' for Love is a light-hearted documentary exploring the modern world of online dating. Veterans of online dating share their stories of searching for casual encounters, soul mates, and everything in between.

Clickin' for Love is directed by Pablo Pappano, who went to the film school at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles where he directed the short films Sick and Trinidad. Recently, Pappano directed a speculative commercial for eHarmony.com after being a longtime member.

Often regarded as a marginal society, the recycling underworld of Sao Paulo - Brazil's largest metropolis - is the backdrop to the touching story of Claudines and his family. Hauling reveals the day-to-day life of this man, a father to over 27 children, and of many others who make their living out of collecting and recycling material that others have thrown out.

The documentary is directed, written, and produced by Sean Walsh. Walsh was born in Montreal, Canada and graduated from the New York Film Academy and holds a Master of Arts degree in Film and Television Production from Bristol University, England. Since 2001, he has resided in Sao Paulo, Brazil.

Through the production company Code 7 he produces films and directs music videos. Hauling is his documentary feature directorial debut.

The major sponsors this year include the City of Riverside; University of California, Riverside; Riverside Community College District; Riverside Medical Clinic; and the Riverside Human Relations Commission. Media sponsors for RIFF include the Press Enterprise; Black Voice News; and InstantRiverside.com. Harki Dhillon, President of RIFF, commented, “I am very encouraged by the commitment of our local media partners. I anticipate that they will be a great asset in spreading the word of all the good things happening with the Festival.”

Fishbone Documentary to Debut

EVERYDAY SUNSHINE is a documentary about Fishbone, musical pioneers who have seen rocking on the margins of pop culture for the past 25 years.

From the streets of South Central- Los Angeles and the competitive Hollywood music scene of the 1980's, the band rose to prominence, only to fall apart when on the verge of 'making it.'

Laurence Fishburne narrates EVERYDAY SUNSHINE, an entertaining cinematic journey into the personal lives of this unique Black rock band, an untold story of fiercely individual artists in their quest to reclaim their musical legacy while debunking the myths of young Black men from urban America.

Highlighting the parallel journeys of a band and their city, EVERYDAY SUNSHINE explores the personal and cultural forces that gave rise to California's legendary Black punk sons that continue to defy categories and expectations.

This is Chris Metzler's second film presentation at RIFF; previously We showed his directorial debut documentary Plagues and Pleasures on the Salton Sea. Co-director Lev Anderson began his career as a fine art photographer with works exhibited world-wide.

This film, among other international and independent features will be shown at UltraStar Cinemas in the University Village at 1201 University Avenue, Riverside, CA, 92507. The festivities will begin April 8, 2011 and continue until April 17, 2011. For more information, call (951) 682-4456. For more information about RIFF, visit www.riversidefilmfest.org.

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