June 26, 1988 |
Ty Randolph had the leading female role in Cannon Films' "Penitentiary III," but her name appears near the bottom of the credits--while the wife of director/co-producer Jamaa Fanaka, who has a brief bit, gets top female billing! Thus, maintains Randolph, Marie Burrell Fanaka has gotten credit for Randolph's work--and she has taken her complaint to the Screen Actors Guild. "Jamaa didn't want me," said Randolph, who was hired by star-co-producer Leon Isaac Kennedy.
April 12, 1991 |
Following are The Times' recommendations for today's schedule of the American Film Institute Los Angeles International Film Festival, with commentary by the film reviewing staff. Information: (213) 466-1767. Highly Recommended: "NOUVELLE VAGUE"(France-Switzerland; director Jean-Luc Godard; Nuart, 7 p.m.). Godard's latest, a romance of high finance at a Swiss estate where an unlikely intruder (Alain Delon) acts as catalyst for a group of jet-set corporate movers.
July 30, 1990
While the best directors are being forced (a multimillion-dollar fee is quite considerable duress) into the vast arena of high-tech filmmaking, Third World movie makers find it perennially difficult to fund any project at all ("Blacks in Hollywood: We Need to Help One Another . . ." by Jim Brown, and " 'RoboCop 2': Entertainment, Yes, but Also a Hero for Our Times" by Irvin Kershner, Counterpunch, July 16). What we have in common is that we are now both facing new arenas. High-tech is certainly recent ground for all filmmakers, and for us African-Americans, all areas of filmmaking are relatively new, whether high-tech, low-tech or no-tech.
May 13, 1988 |
Within the first few minutes of the raw and dynamic "Penitentiary III" (citywide), writer-director Jamaa Fanaka deftly maneuvers boxer Too Sweet Gordone (Leon Isaac Kennedy) back into prison. Having been slipped a mind-bending strength-enhancing drug during a match, Too Sweet gets three years for manslaughter after having slugged his opponent to death. It seems that the epicene villain Serenghetti (Anthony Geary) wants Too Sweet back in the slammer so he can become part of his stable of boxers.
September 6, 1987 |
Leon Isaac Kennedy just can't get out from behind those bars. The producer-star of the "Penitentiary" series, including "Penitentiary III," now playing in NYC (no dates yet for L.A.), acknowledged, "I've spent one-third of my professional life incarcerated." Which is why, originally, Kennedy didn't plan on doing a "IV." But then . . . after viewing "III" "for about the 25th time," Kennedy said that he and writer/director Jamaa Fanaka had a change of heart about how to end this installment.
December 2, 1999 |
A black film director's race-discrimination lawsuit against the major film studios and television networks will continue after an appellate court reversed a district court's decision to dismiss the case. Jamaa Fanaka sued the film and TV companies after they decided not to hire him as a director. A separate district court decision to dismiss a similar suit brought by Fanaka against the Directors Guild of America was upheld by the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.