The father of Blaxploitation is back | Bleader

Friday, April 10, 2009

The father of Blaxploitation is back

Posted By on 04.10.09 at 11:42 AM

Sign up for our newsletters Subscribe

Melvin Van Peebles, the Chicago native who's also the first black independent filmmaker of the modern era, is in town for the local premiere tonight of his latest film Confessionsofa Ex-Doofus-ItchyFooted Mutha.  Adapting the film and score from his own 1981 Broadway play Waltz of the Stork, the 76-year-old Van Peebles plays a version of himself, called MVP, following the character from his Chicago youth to New York to globe-spanning, girl-in-every-port adventures in the merchant marine. 

Van Peebles ushered in the Blaxploitation era with his black power opus Sweet Sweetback Baadasssss Song, which he wrote, directed, produced, starred in, composed the music for, and self-distributed in 1971, with the tagline "Rated X by an All-White Jury." Sweetback was revolutionary for its depiction of a virile, rebellious black hero, and with the support of the Black Panther Party went on to be the most successful independent film that year, eventually grossing $15 million against its $150,000 budget. 

Confessionsofa Ex-Doofus-ItchyFooted Mutha, which debuted a year ago at the Tribeca Film Festival, is Van Peebles's first feature as director since the 2000 French comedy Bellyful and his first in America since Gang in Blue, a 1996 story about a white supremacist cell in the LAPD, directed with his son Mario.  

Confessionsofa Ex-Doofus-ItchyFooted Mutha screens tonight at 6 PM at the Parkway Ballroom, 4455 S. King Drive. Tickets are $25. If this trailer is any indication it's a hell of ride:

 

 

And here's a taste of Sweetback:

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

More by Ed M. Koziarski

  • Dead Snow

    Nazi zombies terrorize snowmobiling Norse medical students in "Dead Snow," screening Tuesday 8/30 as the final installment in the Logan Square International Film Series's August "Summer Camp" program.
    • Aug 29, 2011
  • Salonathon

    Salonathon

    The Chicago Underground Film Festival curates a program of "fantastical, funny, friendly, freakish films" from this year's lineup Monday 8/8 at Beauty Bar.
    • Aug 4, 2011
  • 48-Hour Film Project

    Join a team, make a movie in a weekend, watch it at the Logan, and vie for a chance to screen at Cannes, in the 48-Hour Film Project this weekend.
    • Jul 25, 2011
  • More »

Agenda Teaser

Galleries & Museums
Love All Potatoes The Franklin
June 14
Performing Arts
Manic Mondays Frances Cocktail Lounge
November 20

Tabbed Event Search

The Bleader Archive

Popular Stories