Pioneers of African American Cinema (2016)

Jul 26, 2016 | Comedy, Crime, Drama, General Film

Director: Spencer Williams, Oscar Micheaux, Richard E. Norman, James Gist, Eloyce Gist, Richard C. Kahn

Writer(s): N/A

Starring: Paul Robeson, Ethel Moses, Spencer Williams, Evelyn Preer, Herb Jeffries, Zora Neale Hurston

Synopsis: This collection of the historically vital works of America’s legendary first African-American filmmakers is the only one of its kind. Funded in part by a highly successful Kickstarter campaign, the packaged set includes no fewer than a dozen feature-length films and nearly twice as many shorts and rare fragments. Subject matter includes race issues that went unaddressed by Hollywood for decades.






  • The Bronze Buckaroo (1939)
  • Zora Neale Hurston Fieldwork Footage (1928)
  • Commandment Keeper Church, Beaufort, South Carolina (excerpt, 1940)
  • The Blood of Jesus (1941)
  • Dirty Gertie from Harlem USA (1946)
  • Moses Sisters Interview (1978)

Musical scores (for silent films) by Paul D. Miller (aka DJ Spooky), Max Roach, Samuel D. Waymon, the Mont Alto Motion Picture Orchestra, Donald Sosin, Makia Matsumura, Alloy Orchestra, Rob Gal, Andrew Simpson

Bonus Features: Optional English Subtitles, 80-page booklet with essays and detailed film notes, Interviews with series curators Charles Musser and Jacqueline Stewart, Documentary on the restoration of the films, Documentary on the restoration efforts of the Library of Congress, Archival interview with actors Ethel and Lucia Moses (1978), Tyler Texas Black Film Collection promo film (with Ossie Davis, 1985) and more!

Release Date: July 26, 2016 (USA) | Length: 952 min | Genre: Drama, Comedy, Crime | MPAA Rating: NR