Ava DuVernay’s “Array” received a nomination for the Academy Award of the Dominican Republic “Bantú Mama” from director Ivan Herrera


EXCLUSIVE: AvaDuVernay’s Array Releasing has acquired Ivan Herrera’s drama “Bantú Mama” for distribution in the USA, Canada, the UK, Australia and New Zealand. The company will present the film, which was named by the Dominican Republic in 2023 for the Academy Award for Best International Feature Film, on select screens and on Netflix starting on November 17.

“It is a great honor for us to distribute the official application of the Dominican Republic for the Oscar,” said Array President Tilan Jones. “This deeply moving and vividly drawn drama, beautifully directed by Ivan Herrera and co-written with producer Clarisse Albrecht, represents a bold vision that we are very happy to share with the audience.”

Bantú Mama follows a French woman of African descent who manages to escape after being arrested in the Dominican Republic. She finds refuge in the most dangerous area of Santo Domingo, where she is picked up by a group of children. Becoming their protégé and mother figure, she experiences an unimaginable change in her fate.

The film had its world premiere at the 2021 SXSW Film Festival, and has since been screened at festivals including the BFI London Film Festival and Urbanworld. Herrera, Albrecht, Franmiris Lombert and Nicolas LaMadrid produced the film, which received awards from the Durban Film Festival, the Latin American and Iberian Film Festival at Yale University, 47/Festival de Huelva, Festival de Cine Fine Arts, Nova Frontier Film Festival and Quibdó. African Film Festival.

In 2011, DuVernay founded the Peabody Award-winning Array company. Among the company’s past releases are “The Middle of Nowhere” and “This is Life” by DuVernay, awarded the Sundance Award; “Sankofa” and “Ashes and Coals” by Haile Gerima; “Funny Boy” by Deepa Mehta; “Love and Rage” by Sterlin Harjo; Lingua Franca by Isabel Sandoval; Definition of the Sujat of the Day Please; “The Donkey’s Head” by Agama Darshi; “Kojo’s Funeral” by Blitz Bazavule; The Rest of Meravi Gerima; “Ainu Mosir” by Takeshi Fukunaga; Shantrell P. Lewis “In Our Mothers’ Gardens”; Cousins Ainsley Gardiner and Briar Grace-Smith; “Alaska” by Shaz Bennett is Rubbish; Justine Stephanie Turner; “They Must Have Us” by Simon Frederick; “Jezebel” by Numa Perrier; “The Flaming Cane” by Philippe Youmans; and “Restless City” by Andrew Dosonmu, among other titles.

Filmmakers Albrecht and Herrera negotiated a deal for Bantú Mama with Gordon Bobb of Del, Shaw, Moonves, who represented Array.


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