*Three of the original five founding members of the African American Film Critics Association have resigned their posts as a result of recent events and are re-launching under a new name: the Black Film Critics Circle (BFCC).
Trouble in the AAFCA started when its president Gil Robertson IV was accused of rigging the 2009 best actress vote to choose “American Violet” star Nicole Beharie over top vote-getter Gabourey Sidibe of “Precious.”
Other members of the AAFCA claimed that Robertson manipulated the final tally to service the producers of “American Violet,” who, allegedly, offered him financial “donations” in return for a best actress win.
Founding AAFCA members Shawn Edwards (FOX-TV), Wilson Morales (Blackfilm.com/AOL Blackvoices) and Mike Sargent (WBAI-FM/Tor.com) have launched BFCC, in part, to “maintain the integrity of a true critics organization and advance a collective vision of journalists of the black Diaspora.”
BFCC and BlackFilmCriticsCircle.org will officially launch February 1 with the following objectives:
• Recognize excellence of professionals in film in the United States and Abroad • Acknowledge and honor the contributions by people of the black Diaspora in the film industry who work in front of and behind the camera while also welcoming promising new talent • Assist in the development of new talent in the field of entertainment journalism through educational opportunities, mentoring and strategic partnerships • To raise awareness of the significance of black film and black film history as a critical part of film culture.
BFCC will annually announce the organizations “Top 10” films, as well as present awards for achievement in categories including Best Picture, Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Supporting Actor, Best Supporting Actress, Best Screenplay and more.