For the Record – Black History Month at VIFF

Jenny Cameron – February 6, 2018

Black history month takes place every February in Canada. (pixabay)

The Black History Month film series playing at Vancouver International Film Festival during the month of February is doing more than entertaining people for couple of hours.

Founder and co-curator of the Black History Month film series at VIFF, Barbara Chirinos, says she created the series to remind people, that despite negative images of black people in the media, black people do contribute to society every single day.

“Black people create history every single day – from January 1st to December 31st – it’s just that there accomplishments and contributions, that we are completely aware of, but society at a large are not aware. There are a lot of people who think black people do not make contibutions to society.” – Barbara Chirinos, founder of Black History Month film series at VIFF.

Major blockbuster films, such as Deadpool 2 and various Marvel movies, starring significant black characters have been filmed in Vancouver recently. Although a step in the right direction to promote cultural diversity in films, Chirinos says there needs to be more production written and produced by people of colour and women.

“There are so many stories that we are lacking we can learn from if we have more women, if we have more black people, if we have more Filipino people, more Indian people, more Indigenous stories…I think we would be a wealthier society, socially, if there were more representation.” – Barbara Chirinos, founder of Black History Month film series at VIFF.

She says she hopes to turn this film series into a festival because of the interest from the public and the growing black population in Vancouver.

If you are interested in checking out the films being played during this month, click here.

Listen to the full interview below.