Tango Macbeth has screened in the international tour of the African Diaspora International Film Festival 2012 edition and toured New York, Washington D.C., Chicago and Paris in 2013. It screened at the Roxy International Film Festival 2012 and the Philadelphia Independent Film Festival 2012 and the MARFICI festival in Argentina 2013. In 2014 Tango Macbeth screened at the Sembene Film Festival in Pittsburgh, PA; the Museum of the Moving Image in Queens New York; and PHILAFILM.
For updates on screenings and events please follow us on Twitter @TangoMacbeth.
PRESS INTERVIEWS WITH DIRECTOR NADINE PATTERSON
Interview on Blake Radio with Deardra Shuler Saturday April 19th http://www.blogtalkradio.com/blakeradio/2014/04/19/topically-yours–documentary-filmmaker-nadine-patterson
Interview with Sergio Mims at Shadow & Act April 19, 2014 http://blogs.indiewire.com/shadowandact/nadine-pattersons-tango-macbeth-screening-in-harlem-4-23-and-an-interview-w-the-filmmaker
Interview: Nadine Patterson’s Talks Her Reimagining Of Shakespeare’s ‘Macbeth’ Which Screens 4/23 In Harlem
Shadow & Act/IndieWire interview by Sergio
April 19, 2014 1:42 PM
Filmmaker Nadine Patterson’s provocative and original film version of William Shakespeare’s Macbeth will be screened in Harlem in New York City this coming Weds April 23rd,starting at 6:30PM, and the filmmaker herself will be there in person as well.
To reserve a ticket you can go to the film’s website HERE.
The film is currently in a limited theatrical run through Tugg, a web-based platform that allows audiences to choose what films play at their local theaters and will play at the AMC Magic Johnson Harlem 9.
But a few days ago I also had the chance to talk to the Philadelphia-based filmmaker herself for whom Tango Macbeth is her first feature film, after working for several years in the documentary field and television. The London Film School Masters graduate spoke to me about the genesis of her feature and what it takes to be an independent filmmaker.
SERGIO: As always the most obvious question first – how did this project come about?
PATTERSON: Well I developed the idea when I was in London. I studied at the London Film School from 2003 to 2005 and I worked with several Black British actors while I was there and they said that in order to advance in their careers they had to they really had to do the canon of Shakespeare’s works. But because they’re black, they’re not really considered for any of the major roles.
So I initially started out creating a film version of one of Shakespeare’s works to provide opportunities for people of color. That was my original intention, so when I was thinking about which play, I wanted to focus on and spend the next five or six years (laughing) creating a film of it, I selected Macbeth. That’s how the project started.
SERGIO: So how long did it take you to see this project through, from inception to the final finished film?
PATTERSON: So I started work-shopping the film in London in the summer of 2008, and I completed the script in 2010, had the cast together and shot the film in 2011, and went into post-production the end of 2011 into 2012, and completed post-production in 2012.
SERGIO: The reason I asked that is because I wanted any aspiring filmmakers out there to get some idea of what it takes to make a film, even a small budget independent one. A lot of people think you can just take a camera and go shoot something, but, in reality, if you want to do it right, it takes years of dedication and determination.
PATTERSON: Yes it is! You’re absolutely right.
SERGIO: So what kept you going despite all the hardships and setbacks I’m sure you faced making your film? At any time, you could have said, I give up, this isn’t going anywhere, but you stuck with it.
PATTERSON: Well I love Shakespeare and I’ve always enjoyed his plays. I love the use of language, I think the lessons that we can learn from his works are endless and I liked the idea of exploring the relationship between the Macbeths. They are a very passionate couple, they’re totally in love with each other, but they happen to be evil and I wanted to explore that dichotomy. Like how can you have a couple that is so in love, and so caring in terms of each other, and yet, commit such heinous crimes against others, like friends and family? So it was a puzzle that I wanted to explore through creating a film adaptation. And that’s what kept me going – that hunger; that search to figure out why, why, why. Why do people do bad things? (laughs). Or why do people start off with good intentions, and then just screw everything up?
SERGIO: And what about the naysayers. Those people who don’t believe in you and always try to shoot you down? Why are wasting your time with this? Can’t you find something else better to do?
PATTERSON: You know because I’ve seen so many bad films, (laughs), really, really crappy films. And I know I could make a film that was better than those crappy films that I had seen. I knew I could do that. And because I was working with one of best writers on the planet, living or dead, Shakespeare, I knew that I could create at least a compelling story that people could sit and watch and feel that they weren’t wasting their time viewing. So I knew that. And because of my earlier training as a documentary filmmaker, and my training at the London Film School, I learned from some of the best filmmakers on the planet Earth. I really understood the craft of filmmaking and the language of cinema. I knew I could do it. I knew I could do it. I believed in myself.
SERGIO: Is it necessary to go to film school?
PATTERSON: No, but for me it helped because I was making the transition from documentary and television work into narrative cinema. And my plan was to make as many short films as I could. So I made four short films while I was there, in a two and half year time period, which was important for me. And I wanted to actually touch the film and I wanted to shoot on film, so I asked myself, where is the place where I can actually work in film? Not video, not HD, but actually touch the celluloid; and that was the London Film School, so I went there.
SERGIO: And the other most obvious question – what’s next?
PATTERSON: Well my next project is… (takes a breath) Black Paris! I want to do an experimental documentary about the black presence in the city of Paris, looking at seven different points in its 2000 year history. It’s big (laughs) and it requires that I’m going to have to spend a lot of time in Paris…
SERGIO: Like you’re complaining…
PATTERSON: (laughs) Like I’m complaining, yeah exactly! For me, part of my ability to persevere as a filmmaker is that I select subjects or topics for films that I know I will enjoy; that I know I can spend the next five or six years of my life working on it, obsessing about it, day in and day out. Because if you don’t love it with a passion, then you’re not going to be able to get through all the naysayers; you’re not going to get through all the rejection letters from potential funders; you won’t be able to get through all the hassles with the cast and crew. You just won’t. So you have to love it. It’s the love that carries you through.
Check out Ms. Patterson’s website HERE for her production company, to find out about her projects:
20th New York City African Diaspora International Film Festival Announces Ticket Sales and Film Selection Preview
October 1, 2012 3:50 PM
The African Diaspora Film Festivalis scheduled to run from November 23rd through December 11th.
You can purchase festival pases today at a discount. The VAP (Very Artsy Person) Pass gives access to all festival events including Opening Night, Closing Night and all special events. Discounted to $225 from $250 until October 15. The Regular pass gives access to all the regular screenings for $160, or $145 before October 15. Tickets can be purchasd HERE.
Over 60 Films are scheduled to screen over the course of the 19 day Festival. While the full roster has yet to be released the following films have been announced:
Tango MacBeth will make its New York Premiere at ADIFF. The film directed by Nadine M. Patterson is being described as “a deconstructed, visceral, fluid, energetic re-imagining of a classic tragedy.”
One Fine Day is a film about individuals who decided to do something out of the ordinary that gave them a voice they otherwise would not have. Among those men and women the voice of John Carlos who showed the world in Mexico in 1968 during the Olympic Games that he supported the Black Power Movement.
Dead River will screen as part of the Namibia Showcase, the film a historical drama set during Apartheid in Namibia, follows the unlikely friendship of a farm worker’s son and the farmer’s daughter. After the dauther returns from exile to face the life she left behind after living in Germany.
A Mother’s Love directed by Tim Alexander follows the family of “Regina Reynolds, a strong black woman in the truest sense! But her taste for the good life didn’t necessarily include her husband Marcus or her daughter Monica. It truly takes “A Mother’s Love” from Georgia to pray her down to earth!”
Survivor: Living Above the Noise a film by and about Brooke Bello, it tells the tale of “one woman’s search for freedom from a devastating act of destruction to the ultimate ‘triumph of the human spirit.” Bello documents her own story of working as a sexual slave in the U.S.
Shadow & Act Write up for Tango Macbeth
Preview Meta-fictional Feature ‘Tango Macbeth’ – A play, Inside A Documentary, Inside A Film
August 10, 2012 2:25 PM
In reading the synopsis for this, I immediately thought of William Greaves’ 1968 momentous Symbiopsychotaxiplasm: Take One, and its layers of metatextual storytelling, inherent in the concept of the story: that of a documentary, inside a documentary, inside a documentary.
But in this case, with Tango Macbeth (an official selection of the 2012 Roxbury International Film Festival and the Philadelphia Independent Film Festival), it’s a play, inside a documentary, inside a film!
Produced and directed by Nadine Patterson (along with her mother Marlene Patterson) Tango Macbeth’s synopsis reads:
A theater company rehearses Macbeth. A documentary film crew follows them during the rehearsal process. Occasionally the actors become lost in Shakespeare’s world. This blend of intense drama, dance and humor is a refreshing take on Shakespeare’s classic text.
The story of Macbeth is one that I’m sure many of you are already familiar with (or can look up quickly and catch up), so I won’t bother with a breakdown. But what’s the connection with the other word in the title of the film – “Tango”?
In the filmmaker’s words:
The idea of a tango dance, with multiple partners, each coupling has it’s own intensity and power dynamics. The word tango comes from the Congo in central Africa and means drum circle. A place where people in the community are invited to dance and share. We use the word tango in this literal sense. The film audience is invited into a space to experience and share. The music is very percussive, keeping in line with the traditional African drum music used in tango circles.
Tango Macbeth was shot over 11 days in July, with a multi-ethnic cast and crew, in the Philadelphia metropolitan area.
It stars Alexandra Bailey, Brian Anthony Wilson, Justin Bryant, Veronica Wathome, and James Tolbert.
Original music was created by Lenny Seidman.
Choreography is by Zane Booker.
Check out the trailer below: