Romancito & Autumn’s short film selected for 2016 Taos Shortz Film Festival

LaurelsOfficialSelection2016WHITEM. Elwell Romancito and Christine Autumn short film “Nigger Jim” has been selected to be part of the 2016 Taos Shortz Film Festival. The festival is scheduled for April 7-10 in Taos, New Mexico.

Poet, artist, musician and teacher Christine Autumn collaborated with M. Elwell Romancito last summer to make “Nigger Jim,” a short video/film which explores the recent and past incident of racial violence. It features a spoken-word performance by Autumn with music composed by Romancito in the background. The film was edited by Romancito and is made up of moving and still images mostly from the Prelinger Archive.

The subject matter is not for the faint-of-heart, says Romancito, who confesses watching the film has raised goose bumps on her arms or made her cry every time.

still-comp“At first, I didn’t think I was up to the project, but after I started researching, name upon name of the sacrificed came to mind, and as the project stretched into summer, so did the newly dead. I know some people will have a problem with the subject matter. They will say I should not make videos about the bad things in the world and stick to pretty pictures. Others will say, as a white woman, I have no business stepping into the discussion,” she said. “I feel it’s necessary to examine our culture and question things if this is the way we’re headed.”

Autumn said the poem was written back in the early 2000s. People were reacting to high-profile cases like Michael Richards racial outburst, among others. She says she was surprised that so many of the people she shared the poem with appeared to be either offended by it or incapable of addressing the subject matter. This, she says, is why she felt it was so important to revisit the poem and its sentiment in light of recent racial tensions.

The film, which is only a little over 2 minutes long, will be shown along with other short films as part of the Taos Shortz Film festival’s local showcase. The festival was featured on Moviemaker Magazine’s “Top 50 Worth the Entry Fee” list and has garnered international attention and has become an eagerly-anticipated community event.

For more information about Taos Shortz Film Festival, visit www.taosshortz.com