Origin (2023): Exclusive Screening

ORIGIN (2023)

A special screening and Q&A of Oscar-nominated Writer & Director Ava DuVernay's biographical drama exploring the life of Pulitzer winner Isabel Wilkerson

Screen South are proud to be partnering with Silver Screen Cinema and Gabriella Apicella to bring you an exclusive screening and Q&A of ORIGIN (2023), taking place Sunday 21st April 2024 at 3pm. Also featured will be Paul Garnes, Producer of Origin, in conversation with locally-based writer Charlotte Forfieh.

Written and directed by Academy Award® nominee Ava DuVernay, ORIGIN chronicles the tragedy and triumph of Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Isabel Wilkerson as she explores the mystery of history, the wonders of romance, and a fight for our future.

Guest Post by Gabriella Apicella

Origin is an important film. A film that is changing attitudes, deepening learning, and creating new ways of screen storytelling. From Writer/Director Ava DuVernay it combines the emotional intensity of narrative film with the informational complexity of documentary. For audiences it has proven to be a cathartic and deeply altering experience, connecting us to one another and the history we share. And like any work of this importance, its ambitious potential can only be realised if it is seen.

ORIGIN chronicles the tragedy and triumph of Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Isabel Wilkerson as she explores the mystery of history, the wonders of romance, and a fight for our future.

I had the good fortune to see Origin in December 2023, and have simply not been able to stop thinking about it since. While films dealing with inhumanity can usually leave a person feeling drained and despondent, Origin galvanises its audience with a drive to share its gifts of insight into the causes of oppression. Perhaps the most practical proof of this in my case is that, with the generous support of Screen South, I have arranged a screening at the Silver Screen cinema in Folkestone at 3pm on 21st April. All tickets will be at the reduced price of £5, and there will be a short Q&A following the film. 

“What this captivating, complicated, and oft-compelling movie gives you is a biopic not of a writer but of a book, from inspiration to publication.” – Rolling Stone

Click here to read the full review on Rolling Stone’s website.

Folkestone has recently been named the best place to live in the South East. While there are many wonderful aspects of the town to warrant this status, as a resident it is impossible to close our eyes to the inequalities and prejudicial attitudes that remain pervasive. The reports of those attempting to seek refuge from war and oppression losing their lives in the Channel – the same sea in which so many of us swim and play for leisure – are often accompanied by hateful demonstrations and frustrating inaction from the government. Shorncliffe Barracks was the site of great controversy as the conditions its residents were subjected to came to light. And yet Folkestone’s history proves there is also a great tradition of working together to welcome those who have been forced from their homes.

“This is the time when we have to push through our fatigue and open our eyes and engage. Hopefully this film contributes to that in some way.” – Ava DuVernay

Click here to read the full interview on TIME’s website.

In June 2020, the town came together in Radnor Park to demonstrate against the racist violence and murder of George Floyd. Black Lives Matter posters were a regular sight in people’s windows, on their t-shirts and within their social media posts.  The beloved annual celebrations of Strange Cargo’s Charivari and Jim Jam Arts’ Living Advent Calendar regularly uplift the diversity of communities in the town. There is a majority core of Folkestone that knows division is fundamentally inhuman. And yet, there remain insidious inequalities experienced by those who are not white European that go unseen by those of us who are not directly affected. 

Origin offers the opportunity to understand the roots of division. How it was constructed and why. And to do something about it within our own interactions. 

“Here is a director who has demonstrated on multiple occasions her capacity to shift and reframe the conversation.” – Variety

Click here to read the full review on Variety’s website.

The responses to the film have proven its power. Having directed one of the greatest Biopics of all time with “Selma” about Martin Luther King, the extraordinary Television Drama “When They See Us”, and the transformative documentary “The 13th”, Ava DuVernay is both a masterful storyteller across formats, and a beacon of unity. Her achievement in translating Isabel Wilkerson’s complex thesis “Caste” into a film of immersive beauty and accessible learning is nothing short of trailblazing. Made outside of the traditional studio system, Origin’s legacy is building through each person it touches.

With my extreme gratitude to Screen South and Silver Screen in enabling the screening to take place, I invite you to join me in Folkestone at 3pm on 21st April to see it. Origin is an important film.

 

Paul Garnes, Producer of Origin

Paul Garnes is the producer of Ava DuVernay’s ORIGIN which was filmed across three countries in just 37 days. As the president of DuVernay’s production banner, ARRAY Filmworks, he oversees all aspects of development, physical production, and post-production for the company’s television and film slate. 

Since formally joining ARRAY in March 2020, in addition to ORIGIN, Garnes has produced the company’s series COLIN IN BLACK AND WHITE for Netflix, HBO Max’s DMZ and ONE PERFECT SHOT, The CW’s Naomi, NBC’s HOME SWEET HOME, and OWN’s CHERISH THE DAY. Garnes also oversaw the production of DuVernay’s QUEEN SUGAR for seven historic seasons, making the show the longest-running television series centering on a Black family. 

Previously, Garnes collaborated with DuVernay to produce the Sundance Award-winning film MIDDLE OF NOWHERE and the Academy Award-winning film SELMA. Garnes has worked as Vice President of Operations and Production for Foxx/King Productions, Head of Production for Simmons-Lathan Media Group, and Vice President and Executive in Charge of Production for the Tyler Perry Company, supervising over 250 episodes of broadcast TV while at the studio. Garnes, a Chicago Columbia College graduate, is currently a board member.