Full Frame Documentary Film Festival

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Documentary lovers are in downtown Durham today through Sunday for the 18th annual Full Frame Documentary Film Festival.

This year features three Center Frame documentaries, selected by a special committee.  One of this year’s featured films is “3 1/2 Minutes," by Director Marc Silver. 

The film "Cairo in One Breath" takes a look at the Adhan Unification Project.
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The adhan, or call to prayer, is a 1,400 year-old oral tradition in the process of change in Cairo, Egypt. In 2004, after generations of having muezzins—the man who calls Muslims to prayer from the minaret of a mosque—make the call, the Mubarak government decided to make a change. They began to replace Cairo's approximately 200,000 muezzins with a single radio broadcast.

Rex Miller

Tennis legend Althea Gibson emerged from South Carolina to break color barriers in professional tennis.

In 1956, she became the first person of color to win a Grand Slam tournament, and went on to win Wimbledon and the U.S. Open the following year. 

She became a champion despite the rules of the segregation era, a time when country clubs would not allow her to dress in their clubhouses. 

The new documentary “Althea” provides a glimpse of how she did it.

Chad Stevens

Last weekend marked the fifth anniversary of the Upper Big Branch mine disaster in West Virginia—the nation’s worst coal mine disaster in decades. Massey Energy, one of the largest American coal companies, ran the mine, and its CEO Don Blankenship has since been indicted on charges that he deliberately concealed health and safety violations at the mining site.

Olympia Stone's film 'Curious Worlds' follows artist David Beck.
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Artist David Beck carves, sculpts, paints and creates playful and imaginative creatures from dragonflies to elephants.

Much of his art is miniature, in contrast to the sculptures of many of his contemporaries. He has been praised as a “master craftsman and ingenious mechanic.”

Olympia Stone's latest film goes inside the magical world of miniature architect David Beck. 

  The documentary Bronx Obama follows the story of Luis Ortiz, an unemployed man living in the Bronx who one day in 2008 is told he looks an awful lot like a guy named Barack Obama from Chicago who is running for President—and that changes everything. 

The Full Frame Documentary Film Festival has begun in Durham.  One of the films making its world premiere is The Supreme Price, which follows the return of Hafsat Abiola back to her home country of Nigeria.   Hafsat Abiola is the daughter of the former president of Nigeria, M.K.O Abiola and Kudirat Abiola,  who spoke out boldly against political corruption in that country in the 1990’s and ultimately lost her life because of it.

Lawyer and freedom fighter Albie Sachs is one of the lesser-known heroes of South Africa’s anti-apartheid movement. He spent time incarcerated and years in exile before nearly dying from a car bomb. 

Full Frame Theater at ATHD
Gurnal Scott

Documentary film enthusiasts are in downtown Durham today through Sunday for the Full Frame Documentary Film Festival.  City leaders like the business. 

There could easily be an extra 12,000 to 13,000 people packed in a few city blocks because of Full Frame.

“And they’ll be laughing and smiling and talking about the films that they’ve seen.  It’s really a great, great event.”

  Darius Monroe was 17 years old living in Texas when he committed a crime that would shape the course of his life.  He and two friends robbed a bank in their hometown making off with tens of thousands of dollars.  He was caught and spent 5 years in prison. A decade later, he returned home to try to figure out what impact his crime had on his family and the others who were in the bank that day.                     

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