As theaters open around the nation in preparation of telling the story of political icon, Nelson Mandela from the perspective of his wife, Winnie Mandela, a sneak peek was hosted by the International Black Film Festival (IBFF) on Thursday, September 5, 2013. T.D. Jakes presents, “Winnie Mandela” which stars Jennifer Hudson and Terrance Howard. As the Manna From Heaven Dinner House was transformed into a theater complete with movie tickets, popcorn and other theater concessions, members of the community enjoyed the only Nashville premier on a large screen with great surround sound.
Hazel Joyner Smith, Founder/CEO of the International Black Film Festival Nashville/Film House opened up the special premier with an introduction of how the film was made under the direction of director Darrell Roodt. She also mentioned, “Winnie Mandela did not approve of the film. Although she offered no comments in regards to the film, the discussion at the end of the movie will be sent to Bishop T.D. Jakes and maybe he will be allowed to share them with her.”
Following the end of the movie, guests were offered an opportunity to comment on what they had just seen:
“I have been struggling with some of the movies of this type lately. When I watched ‘Roots’ years ago, I became so angry that I didn’t see the message. However, with ‘The Butler’ and in this movie, ‘Winnie’, I really felt connected to South Africa. I think it is important for young people to see these movies because some of them think that these things never happened…”
James said, “Thank you for the people who did this movie. We need to know more history. As an author of the book, ‘Nobody Want to Talk About Slavery’, young people don’t believe these things to be real…”
“Thank you Hazel. Gaps were filled in that I didn’t know happened. The story of Winnie Mandela makes me want to do my own research. I’m glad that the story of the family was told.”
“I wondered why they separated after all of those years. I’m glad to know that he really loved her…”
And, a final comment given by State Representative Harold Love, Jr. as he said, “The movie gives an inside look at some of the personal things that go on with political decisions made in these situations. I hope to see more of these type movies…”
A great appreciation was given to the staff of Youth About Business and YAB founder Sam Kirk, owner and founder of Manna From Heaven Dinner House for allowing this premier to take place in such a conducive facility.
“Winnie” is now showing in theaters. Check local listings for a theater near you.
For additional information on the International Black Film Festival, visit www.ibffnashville.com