The award is bestowed by Miami each year upon a distinguished leader who has inspired the nation to advance civil rights and social justice. Miami strives to honor the legacy of those who worked for civil rights and social justice who trained in Oxford in 1964. We specifically want to note the cases of Michael Schwerner, 24, James Chaney, 21, and Andrew Goodman, 20, Freedom Summer activists who gave their lives in service to humanity.
Freedom Film Festival
Miami University will host its Freedom Film Festival Nov. 8-12, following the presentation of the Freedom Summer of ‘64 Award to Hollywood film producer Reginald Hudlin at 7 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 7, in Hall Auditorium.
Wil Haygood and Reginald Hudlin
Wil Haygood, author of Colorization: One Hundred Years of Black Films in a White World
During the film festival, Miami University alumnus and Boadway Distinguished Scholar-in-Residence Wil Haygood will be featured, along with the release of his new book, Colorization: One Hundred Years of Black Films in a White World, (Random House, October 2021).
“Representation in film — or lack thereof — has long interested me,” said Haygood. “I spent the past several years working on Colorization: One Hundred Years of Black Films in a White World. The book highlights the long struggle of Blacks to rise in the film industry. These are stories of hard struggle, many dreams, and sometimes triumph.”
Haygood said of Hudlin’s work, “Hollywood is a better place because of his monumental contributions when it comes to equality and representation.”
“Years ago when I was a student at Miami University (Ohio), one of my weekly pleasures was going into town to see a movie,” Haygood said. “Among the stars of those movies were Jack Nicholson, Faye Dunaway, Walter Matthau, Al Pacino, John Houseman, Ellen Burstyn, and Lee Grant. The dearth of movies with Black leading characters - or even supporting characters - was painfully obvious.”
Freedom Summer of '64 Award
Hudlin will receive Miami's Freedom Summer of ‘64 Award on Sunday, Nov. 7, for his contributions in bringing Black images to screen. Haygood and Hudlin will conduct a question and answer session during the Nov. 7 event.
“These are superheroes who risked their lives,” Hudlin said of those who trained in Oxford in 1964. “I feel very humbled that what I do can be compared to what those heroes did. I am inspired and feel a sense of mission.”
Film Festival Schedule
The film festival will be held in Leonard Theatre, Peabody Hall, Nov. 8-12. There will be a brief introduction to each film, the screening, and then a facilitated discussion about it. The films to be shown are:
A Patch of Blue
Monday, Nov. 8, 7 – 9:30 p.m.
A falling-in-love story about a blind white woman and a Black man. Full of 1960s racial realism.
Moderator: Andy Rice, assistant professor, Miami University department of media, journalism, and filmA Patch of Blue IMDb
Tuesday, Nov. 9, 7 – 9:30 p.m.
Notable for Dorothy Dandridge, the first Black to receive a Best Actress Oscar nomination.
Moderator: Kerry Hegarty, associate professor, Miami University department of media, journalism, and filmCarmen Jones IMDb
Imitation of Life
Wednesday, Nov. 10, 7– 9:45 p.m.
A Black daughter denies her racial heritage, with heartbreaking consequences.
Moderator: Kim Tavares, Miami University associate vice president of alumni relationsImitation of Life IMDb
Thursday, Nov. 11, 7 – 9:30 p.m.
America was introduced to an unusual figure: A bold Black detective.
Moderator: Ron Scott, Miami University Professor Emeritus of media and communication, former associate vice president of institutional diversityShaft IMDb
Friday, Nov. 12, 7 – 9:45 p.m.
A White House butler served eight presidents. Inspired by an article written by Miami faculty member Wil Haygood.
Moderator: Wil Haygood, Miami University alumnus, Boadway Scholar-in-Residence, and authorThe Butler IMDb