Black Culture And The Black Experience

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“It is said that seeing is believing but that depends on the source vision”. If one does not experience first-hand they see through another medium which is often film and television. Film is one of the reasons black culture and the black experience is misunderstood and filled with fabricated beliefs. African Americans have been involved in Hollywood films since film earliest forms in the early 20th century. In these early films African Americans was showed in a damaging unpleasant way. African American filmmakers have been are emancipating the black image from Hollywood’s depiction of Blacks. They are challenging the stereotypes and destroying the view of the singular black experience. Black are becoming more involved in the
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Tommy L. Lott, Redefining Black Film (1995), asserts that the growing number of Hollywood movies by black independent filmmakers demand a more black film commentary, which was fostered by the Blaxploitation era
Brief History of African American Roles in Film

African Americans have had a long history in the American motion picture industry. Early depictions of African American men and women were limited to demeaning stereotypical images of people of color. During the first decades of the 20th century, many films depicted idealized vision of life in the South. These films glorified the image of the Old South .African American characters, in keeping with the dominant stereotypes, were portrayed as incompetent, child-like, hyper-sexualized, and criminal.
Even the roles for African Americans such as loyal servants, mammies, and butlers--reinforced a belief that the proper social position for Blacks was that of a servant who was unswervingly devoted to his/her White masters and to upholding the current social order.

The growing momentum of the Civil Rights Movement brought more changes in Hollywood around the 1950s black were beginning to gain more screen time. The 1970s was the Blaxploitation era this films were originally made specifically for an urban black audience, starring black actors in key
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