Haile Gerima Is a Cinema Legend but Still Can’t Find Support for His Films

His new fund-raising effort has been championed by Ava Duvernay.

Haile Gerima. (Photo: 'The Washington Post'/Getty Images) -
Haile Gerima. (Photo: ‘The Washington Post’/Getty Images) –

Haile Gerima makes movies about social justice, inner-city poverty, and the African American experience. Perhaps unsurprisingly, his films don’t tend to be financed by major studios. He’s typically relied on funding from nonprofits and coproducers in Europe, but this time around, he’s taking a more modern approach by launching a crowdsourcing effort for the first time. There’s just one problem: In a month, the IndieGoGo campaign has only raised about 10 percent of its goal of $500,000, which will be matched by an independent coproducer.

Saaret Yoseph, the campaign’s project manager, isn’t worried. She says she’ll continue working to raise the remaining funds for as long as it takes to make the movie, Yetut Lij, which explores human rights abuses in 1960s Ethiopia. “[Gerima’s] been very vocal about the realities for independent filmmakers, so it is a struggle, and it is challenging. We’re navigating the landscape,” says Yoseph, who is also involved with the film’s production.

Read more at: TakePart