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'The Abominable Crime' Kicks Off Pulitzer Center Film Series at New York's Paley Center

Event Date:

April 21, 2015 | 6:30 PM EDT
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Jamaica has the reputation of being one of the most violently anti-gay countries on earth. Male...

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The Abominable Crime, the award-winning documentary on homophobia in Jamaica by director Micah Fink, kicks off the Pulitzer Center's film series at New York's Paley Center for Media. The screening is set for Tuesday, April 21.

After the screening, Fink will discuss the film along with Pulitzer Center Managing Director Nathalie Applewhite and human rights lawyer Maurice Tomlinson, whose story is told in The Abominable Crime as it explores culture of homophobia in Jamaica through the eyes of gay Jamaicans who are forced to choose between their homeland and their lives after their sexual orientations are exposed.

Also participating will be Andrea Flynn, vice president of the M∙A∙C AIDS Fund, which supports the Pulitzer Center and its coverage of HIV/AIDS, and Suzanne Persard, the LGBT Thematic Specialist with a focus on the Caribbean at Amnesty International.

The Pulitzer Center supported the film as well as the original reporting in Fink's reporting project, "Glass Closet: Sex, Stigma and HIV/AIDS in Jamaica" with documentary filmmaker Gabrielle Weiss and multimedia journalist Lisa Biagiotti.

"The Abominable Crime" had its world premiere in 2013 in San Francisco at the 37th International Frameline Film Festival, the largest and oldest gay and lesbian film festival in the world. As Fink was putting the finishing touches on the film before the premiere, he wrote, "But the truth is that a film like this is never really finished. While the pictures end and the credits roll, the film is just part of a much larger story that continues on. Buggery is still a crime in Jamaica, homophobia continues to be socially acceptable, and new abuses and atrocities are being committed every month. Life goes on."

He mentions that Simone Edwards, the other major character in the film, is building a new life with her daughter Khayla in Holland, where they were granted asylum.

The Abominable Crime won the 2014 Trinidad and Tobago Film Festival's inaugural Amnesty International Human Rights Prize for a Caribbean film that best highlights a human rights issue. In its award announcement, the Festival described filmmaker Micah Fink's documentary as a "touching, troubling reflection of the struggle gays and lesbians in Jamaica face to achieve their rights."

Reception after the film and discussion.

Free and open to the public, but RSVP requested - please reserve your seat today.

Tuesday, April 21
6:30 pm (doors open at 6 pm)
The Paley Center for Media
Bennack Theater
25 West 52nd Street
New York, NY 10019

The second film in the Pulitzer Center series at the Paley Center is The Rise of the Killer Virus on the origins of HIV by Carl Gierstorfer and is associated with his Pulitzer Center-supported reporting project "HIV's Origins-And the Lessons for Today."

The European version of The Rise of the Killer Virus aired as The Bloody Truth and premiered in 2014 in advance of World AIDS Day. Writer & Director: Carl Gierstorfer, Director of Photography: Renaat Lambeets, Editor & Art Director: Marcel Ozan Riedel, Executive Producer: Antje Boehmert. Produced by DOCDAYS Production, YUZU Productions, CONGOO, for Smithsonian Networks, ZDF/ARTE, CCTV 10, RTBF, and VRT. The documentary will screen at the Paley Center on Thursday, April 23. Gierstorfer will participate in a post-screening discussion.


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