Take a "Stand" with Tavis Smiley
I just received word that Tavis Smiley has produced and directed his first feature film: Stand, although I haven’t seen it yet. If you don’t know Tavis Smiley, he is the host of his own syndicated radio show and television show on PBS. Quite a few years back, Tavis was the anchor on BET’s News Program and it was obvious that he had talent, knowledge and the ability to conduct an interview and keep both the viewers and interviewee entertained. Although I’ve never seen Tavis get angry (he has a very kind and quiet demeanor), he has the courage to ask the tough questions.
I am very happy to hear about Tavis’ first film and the content, subject matter and brief previews I have seen so far seem promising. I wouldn’t expect any less from Mr. Smiley. Congratulations Tavis!
The tag-line for the film is: What do YOU stand for? I stand for equality. Everyone given the same chance to succeed and fail, no matter what colour they are, religion they follow or their sexual preference.
It was the summer of 2008 in Memphis, birthplace of Blues. America was commemorating the 40th Anniversary of the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., against the backdrop of then Senator Barack Obama emerging as the first African American to become the Democratic presidential nominee. As America approached the historic presidential election, the national dialogue and debate intensified about race relations, politics and the legacy of the civil rights movement.
Broadcaster Tavis Smiley dissects this national discourse with ten Black male friends over several days during a special road trip through Memphis and Nashville. While visiting places like the Lorraine Motel, where Dr. King died, and Stax records, credited with laying the roots of southern soul, Smiley and friends explore the diversity and complexity of the Black male experience in America past, present and future.
STAND reveals the journey of a unique group of scholars, musicians, comedians and social critics as they gather for a rare reflection of brotherhood while confronting their own roles and responsibilities as pioneers of social progress.
Tavis Smiley, Dick Gregory, Michael Eric Dyson, Cornel West, Cliff West, Eddie Glaude, BeBe Winans, Wren T. Brown, Daron Boyce, Robert Smith and Raymond Ross. Special appearances by Sam Moore, Isaac Hayes and David Porter.
As Malcolm X once said: “If you don’t stand for something, you will fall for anything.” So… What do YOU stand for? Check out some video below. And watch the movie!