The Journey Home Film Festival announced that veteran American actors John Amos and Louis Gossett, Jr, will judge the films in the upcoming 2nd Annual Journey Home Festival at the Ellen Johnson Sirleaf Ministerial Complex, Monrovia, Liberia from 16-17 June 2023 . Mr. Amos and Mr. Gossett will nominate and rank the top three films in the competition along with the other judges.
Mr. Gossett is one of the most respected and beloved actors on stage, screen, and television and is also an accomplished writer, producer, and director. He was the first African-American to win the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his unforgettable performance as Drill Sergeant Emil Foley in "An Officer and a Gentleman." Off-screen he is a social activist, educator, and author dedicated to enriching the lives of others.
“I am excited to be a part of this important event. I believe veteran actors like myself must share our industry knowledge with the younger generation so they may learn from it and use our lessons to ascend to a higher level of filmmaking. Judging the films in the Journey Home Film Festival presents a great opportunity for knowledge sharing,” said Mr. Gossett.
Mr. Amos has been a frequent visitor to Liberia since the 1970s. In December 2022, he kicked off the country’s Bicentennial Celebration by officiating at several events. The Bicentennial Celebration marks 200 years since formerly enslaved people from the United States of America found a new home in Liberia.
The American actor has been active in the entertainment industry since the 1970s and is renowned for his role as James Evans in Good Times (1974- 1976). His acting credits also include Roots (1977), Coming 2 America (1988), and Die Hard 2 (1990).
Also judging the films are Writer Producer and founder of Afterglow Multimedia LLC and Grammy-nominated Director, K.C. Amos and Creative Director at Dark Moon Entertainment, J. Anthony Hunter.
Film Festival Executive Director, Dr. Clarice Ford, said that having such veteran actors as John Amos and Louis Gosset Jr. brings international prominence to the event and Liberia.
“Despite perceptions of Liberia, there are talented filmmakers here producing great work: telling important stories. The Journey Home Film Festival is an important way to bring attention to Liberia’s film industry. The Liberian narrative is like a quilt composed of important stories that are told through film,” she said.
About the Journey Home Film Festival
The Journey Home Film Festival is an African American organization based in Liberia dedicated to promoting Liberia and its rich cultural heritage. The mission of the Journey Home Festival is to encourage investment, promote tourism and showcase Liberia as the Jewel of Africa
Held under the theme, Unifying Liberia through Film and Culture, the Journey Home Film Festival seeks to showcase Liberian narratives and the country’s film industry to national and international audiences.
The Journey Home Film Festival begins with a free filmmaker’s workshop on Friday, 16 June 2023, from 8 am-5 pm at the Ministerial Complex. This free one-day event is for aspiring actors, directors, screenwriters, film producers, cinematographers, and others interested in or working in the industry.
Participants will gain insight on cinematography, directing, writing, and producing from some of the industry’s most respected film experts like Ghanaian actor, movie director, and Sky + Orange CEO Van Vicker, Dr. Clarice Ford Kulah, writer and producer of the film, Providence, Film Director Alexander Wiaplah, CEO of USH Productions, along with other international filmmakers in collaboration with Razzouk Brothers Inc.
Audiences in Liberia will have the chance to view a diverse range of feature-length and short films, documentaries, animations, and experimental works, created by talented Liberian filmmakers at the Journey Home Film Festival on Saturday, 17 June 2023, from 9 am to 4 pm at the Ministerial Complex. The program also features discussions, master classes, and films selected to compete at the Liberian Film Awards presented by the Journey Home Film Festival.
Dressed in Red, White, and Blue, film enthusiasts will attend the Liberian Film Awards from 6 pm - 10 pm at the Ministerial Complex. The Awards begin with the red carpet at 6 pm, with the awards starting at 7 pm.
The Awards will celebrate the Best Picture, the Best Director, the Best Actor, the Best Actress, the Best Supporting Actor, the Best Supporting Actress: the Best Series, the Best Original Screenplay, the Best Documentary, the Best Cinematography, the Best Editing, the Best Sound, the Best Indigenous Film, the Best Original Score, the Best Costume, the Best Visual Effects, the Best Production Design, the Best Comedy, the Best Content Creator (Male & Female), the Best Short Film, the Best Film Shot in the Diaspora, the Best Director in the Diaspora, the Best Actress in the Diaspora, the Best Actor in the Diaspora.
About the Festival Partners
The Journey Home Festival organized the Journey Home Film Festival in partnership with the Year of the Diaspora, the Liberia Movie Union iRazzouk Brothers Inc, Ush Productions, and Genesys Communications Consulting.