Remembering Joe Agee, featured in Hoop Dreams

Kartemquin Films, home to Hoop Dreams, is saddened to learn of the passing of Arthur Agee's younger brother, Joe. In the film, young Joe goes by the nickname, "Sweety" and the two brothers remained very close throughout their lives. Joe died over the weekend of heart failure related to a longtime battle with diabetes. His and Arthur's mother Shiela, says that Joe was in quite a bit of pain late in his life and now he has joined his father, Bo, in a better place. The Agee family would sincerely appreciate any donations towards the funeral costs. Those willing to do so, can make donations at http://www.gofundme.com/6hyaxo. Continued

LIFE ITSELF Premieres at Sundance to a Worldwide Audience

On Sunday, January 19, Life Itself world premiered at the Sundance Film Festival. Playing in the MARC Theater to a packed house, Life Itself also streamed worldwide to over 1,600 Ebert fans who contributed to the film’s recent Indiegogo campaign. “Roger was all about community, the democratization of film, film viewing, and the film experience,” director Steve James recently said, and to stream the film to Ebert fans worldwide was a way for the filmmakers to honor Ebert’s egalitarian beliefs. Continued

Life Itself crowdfunding campaign is "game-changing for the entire film industry"

Our Roger Ebert documentary Life Itself will world premiere at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival this Sunday, with over 1,500 Indiegogo supporters exclusively able to simultaneously stream the film via VHX at http://www.Ebertmovie.com. After the screening, those lucky viewers will all share in the q&a from Park City, live streamed via YouTube, and anyone in the world can track and participate in the conversation by following the #Ebertchat and #LifeItself hashtags on Twitter. Continued

Big Sky to host North American premiere of American Arab

American Arab will have its North American premiere at the Big Sky Documentary Festival in Missoula, Montana on February 22nd. Director Usama Alshaibi will attend the screening. American Arab is a "Coming of Arab" story in which Iraqi-American filmmaker Usama Alshaibi shares his own story of experiencing racism in post-9/11 America. Showcasing the diversity of Arabs living in the United States, American Arab sparks a frank conversation about identity and perception, and argues for giving people "the space to be complicated." The film is also confirmed for the 32nd Annual CAAMFest (March 13-23, 2014), in California's Bay Area. Center for Asian American Media (CAAM) is a funder of the film. Continued

When Billy Broke His Head... Now Available to Watch Online

David E. Simpson's classic documentary When Billy Broke His Head... is now available to watch online for the first time via several VOD platforms. One of 11 digital premieres launched this week through the Sundance Institute's creative self-distribution and funding initiative, Artist Services, When Billy Broke His Head... can be streamed from iTunes, Amazon Instant Video, Microsoft Xbox Video and YouTube. The film is already available on DVD. Continued

Happy Birthday Muhammad Ali!

Friday, January 17th is the 72nd birthday of Muhammad Ali. It’s an undeniable reminder of the mortality of a man dubbed The Greatest. It’s a date that should be spent celebrating the remarkable achievements of one of the most outspoken and divisive figures in American history. It’s a moment to reflect on Ali’s athletic prowess, his razor sharp wit, and his unflinching morals and convictions. It’s also a time to say, “Happy Birthday Muhammad Ali! You are the greatest that will ever be!” The Trials of Muhammad Ali will be released on VOD this Tuesday, January 21st. Here is the link to watch it on iTunes. Continued

Read an essential Oral History of Hoop Dreams

Jason Guerrasio has published an extensive oral history of Hoop Dreams at TheDissolve.com. The 12-part history comes ahead of the film's 20th anniversary screening at the Sundance Film Festival this Monday, January 20th, at 1:15pm. Tickets are already wait-list only. Hoop Dreams filmmakers Steve James, Frederick Marx, and Peter Gilbert will attend the screening, with stars Arthur Agee and his mother Sheila Agee. Kartemquin's Gordon Quinn, executive producer of the film, and Kartemquin's current staff will all also attend for this special event. Others expected to attend include Ira Deutchman, the original distributor, and Catherine Allan, executive producer for Twin Cities Public Television. Continued

Announcing Diverse Voices in Docs (DVID) Fellows of 2014

The Diverse Voices in Docs (DVID) Fellowship is a collaboration between Kartemquin Films and Community Film Workshop in Chicago. It is a six-month, intensive program designed to help mid-career filmmakers of color increase their skillset, build their professional network, and move their documentary film projects forward toward completion. Please join us in welcoming our 2014 Diverse Voices in Docs Fellows: Jeff Baraka Cathena Evans W. Joelle Gonzalez-Laguer David D. Grace Stephen Hatch Thavary Krouch Bing Liu Esau Melendez Bryant Monteilh Noel Occomy Ife Olatunji Lourdes Ortega John Owens Anuradha Rana Toni Reed Anton Seals Kamau Tyehimba Samuel Vega Lajwanti Waghray Support for Diverse Voices in Docs comes from The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, KatLei Productions, and The Sage Foundation. Continued

Pages