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February 29, 2020

The Omega Man’s Utopian Dystopia

Our first event of 2020!

Join us during Black History and Women in Horror Month as festival programmer (Blood in the Snow Film Festival) and film critic Carolyn Mauricette discusses the implications of Afrofuturism, authority, and some real-life contradictions behind the scenes of the sci-fi/horror classic, THE OMEGA MAN (1971, dir. Boris Segal).


February 29, 2019 at 8:00pm *New Time: 8:30pm*
The Royal Cinema, 608 College St, Toronto
Tickets: now available here 

This event is in association with:


ABOUT:

In the 1971 film The Omega Man, we are introduced to a post-apocalyptic world where Neville (Charlton Heston) must figure out how to cure humanity of a virus that has changed people into albino-esque, night-dwelling, cult-like fanatics, ready for a new world order.  This second adaptation of prolific novelist, film and TV writer Richard Matheson’s 1954 book,” I Am Legend” inadvertently lends to Afrofuturism: a movement where Black people and Afrocentric themes are placed and addressed in the future in an inclusive way.  The Omega Man fits into an Afrofuturistic scheme because in this screen adaptation of Matheson’s book written by John William Corrington and Joyce Hooper Corrington, a Black woman named Lisa (Rosalind Cash) is also a survivor and Neville’s equal in their quest for a cure. 

Rosalind Cash was a stage and film actress whose refusal to play stereotypical roles made her an Afrofuturist by her actions and her strong portrayal of Lisa is a treat to see, especially since this film, while flawed, tries to capture a world where race isn’t necessarily the only dividing issue, but also ideologies and an attempt to homogenize humanity. She was one of the first black women aside from Nichelle Nichols in Star Trek, that many audiences encountered in a major science fiction vehicle at that time, and she is an icon for Afrofuturism and inclusion in a time when diversity was in its infancy soon after the turmoil of the first wave of the Civil Rights movement. 

Guest:

Carolyn Mauricette is a film programmer for the Blood in the Snow Film Festival and a contributing author to the first edition of the Women in Horror AnnualThe Encyclopedia of Japanese Horror Films (Rowman & Littlefield), and The Encyclopedia of Racism in American Films (Rowman & Littlefield).  She has also written pieces on diversity and women in sci-fi for www.graveyardshiftsisters.com, film reviews for www.cinemaaxis.com and Rue Morgue Magazine, online and in print, and articles in Grim Magazine. Her focus is on independent and Canadian horror, women in horror, and the representation of people of colour within the genre. She has a new site, www.viewfromthedark.ca, where she deep dives into race and representation of people of colour in genre film.

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